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Jobs gets OK to tear down historic house

Apple CEO gets OK from local government to bulldoze mansion some say is architecturally significant.

Apple Computer and Pixar CEO Steve Jobs received the green light from local government officials Tuesday to demolish a historic building on his property in Woodside, Calif.

Jobs, who owns an expansive Mission Revival home designed by the late, internationally known architect George Washington Smith, was battling with preservationists, who sought to keep the home intact. The building had fallen into severe disrepair over the years.

The Woodside Town Council held a public hearing Tuesday night to consider the preservationists' appeal of an earlier decision by the town's planning commission in June. In that decision, the commission, noting that there were no historic preservation ordinances on its books, approved the demolition, providing certain contingences were met.

Woodside's council voted 4-to-3 to uphold the planning commission's earlier decision. But Jobs still has several hoops to jump through before he can clear his property of the house, which is in need of costly repairs.

Jobs cannot demolish the house until he receives a permit to do so, which will take until June 16. In the meantime, he's required to share the cost of advertising and promoting the donation of the estate to any organization willing to cart it away, said a town council representative. Jobs will be required to place such ads in historic-preservation magazines and publications.

Other homes designed by Smith have been offered for sale for millions of dollars, but according to various media reports, Jobs has called the building in question--the Jackling Estate--an "abomination."