Backstory and Context
Around this time, Broadway was becoming a commercial center. When the Metropolitan Building was constructed it provided street-level retail storefronts for multiple businesses with the upper levels left as simple, open lofts to allow maximum flexibility for prospective tenants. Some of the early tenants included:
- The Owl Drug Co., a San Francisco-based drug store chain (1914–1934)
- L.A. Public Library (1913–1926)
- Foreman & Clark, a budget-oriented men's clothier (c. 1915–1928)
- Janns Investment Company, a prominent real estate development company (1916–1928)
- JJ Newbury Company, a Southern California-based variety store chain (1939 to mid-1990s)
- An assortment of dental and medical offices, jewelers, and a street-level cafe.
In the 1950 alterations were made, including the installation of terrazzo flooring, installation of corner entrance, and exterior canopy, as well as a structural glass spandrel panel. Further alterations were made in the 1990s when a food court space was added, along with the introduction of the opening between the first and second floors.
In 1985, the last remaining ownership interest in the building held by a Mueller family member was sold off and in 1996 was transferred to the current owner.