The developer of a new 40-story building in downtown San Diego is going back to the drawing boards after criticism that the building resembled a phallus.
"They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and two beholders – one of them a government agency's architect – have very different views of a 40-story residential tower proposed at a gateway to downtown San Diego.
Sandor Shapery says his design is like a flower. A consultant to the Centre City Development Corp. says it looks like a giant phallus.
The Shapery proposal, a 160-unit hotel and condominium tower, was supposed to go before the downtown redevelopment agency for initial feedback this month. But the developer asked for a postponement, saying he will "revisit" and perhaps "tone down" the design because he doesn't want to offend anyone.
Shapery, however, said he disagrees with the criticism. He said he wanted to create an "organic form," which is how flower petals came to mind.
"If it looks like a phallic symbol, someone has a strange perception," said Shapery, a San Diego-based developer. "You can find sex anywhere if you want to. . . . There's just some sick people out there." "