In a dick-withering display of evil, the Back Bay Architectural Commission made a bid at derailing a flagship Apple Store on Boylston Street last week.

A month ago, members of the Menino administration rushed to the Globe with great news: Apple Computer had plans to demolish a derelict Copy Cop store on Boylston and construct a multi-story “jewel” of an Apple Store in its place. One member of the mayor’s staff bragged that the future architectural landmark “will literally glisten in the Back Bay.”

The news brought joy to Dig HQ. That soulless stretch of Boylston, across the street from the Pru, badly needs the injection of vibrant, creative architecture that an Apple Store would bring. But we were also cautious: That side of Boylston Street falls within the purview of the BBAC, a mayorally appointed, vampiric board that reviews/obstructs construction on Newbury Street and the northern half of Boylston in the interest of maintaining the neighborhood’s architectural cohesion. In recent years, the BBAC has moved to evict newspaper boxes and a whimsical whale sculpture from the district, so we weren’t bullish on Apple’s chances.

On Wednesday, Apple went before the BBAC to receive preliminary architectural guidance as to what type of building the BBAC likely would or would not let them construct. Apple argued that the Copy Cop building they’re eyeing is hardly historic—before housing Xerox machines, the two-story 1906 structure sold tires and auto parts. Nor is it architecturally significant, or even in good structural shape (somebody removed most of its load-bearing walls a while ago). And so, they argued, it can be torn down.

In place of this, an Apple VP proposed constructing a three-story modern glass structure that would boast a theatre, free WiFi and internet surfing stations, and a green roof. The building’s transparency, Apple argued, would make the building an extension of the streetscape. Not just a computer store, it would serve as an indoor plaza, as a gathering place for Bostonians.

The BBAC disagreed.

“What you say sounds good, but this street has an identity, and I don’t see an interaction with that identity,” said commissioner John Christiansen, in reaction to Apple’s preliminary design proposal.

“Tearing down a building needs overwhelming justification,” added Ali Rizvi, the BBAC’s vice chair. “The fabric of this [neighborhood] is very old, and I don’t see a compelling reason why [Apple] should abandon that building.”

Piling on, commissioner Harry Moraitis said, “There’s no relation in this design to the existing block.” (The existing block, it should be noted, currently boasts a Walgreens.) “If every applicant came to us with such a distinctive design, we wouldn’t need to be here. This design is so extreme.”

And commissioner Dell Mitchell objected to the way that the store would light up Boylston at night. “It would be quite an anomaly. There would be a lot of light emanating from the building, and that’s unnatural in this type of neighborhood.”

Putting aside the mental gymnastics it takes to believe that one glass building would destroy the neighborhoody feeling of a three-lane boulevard that hosts a mall, a convention center and the city’s second-tallest tower, Apple’s run-in with the BBAC raises a more immediate question: Is a cabal of frigid elitists stifling Boston’s growth while they defend some bullshit Brahmin conception of what an ex-landfill should look like?

In last week’s Globe, Apple’s lawyer, Stephen Miller, raised the possibility that if Apple isn’t allowed to demolish the Copy Cop building, it may not be interested in developing the site. (Calls to Miller and to Apple were unreturned.) Is the BBAC really willing to drive Apple (and jobs) out of town to preserve a crumbling, water-damaged, ass-ugly storefront? Especially if none of their objections would be issues if Apple were building on the other side of Boylston Street?

“We want Apple to come to the Back Bay,” insists City Councilor Mike Ross. He adds that while he doesn’t consider the Copy Cop building to be historic, he does worry about setting precedent. “Apple may have to go through a few more hurdles than they’re used to, but we want to get them here. But there is a reason why the Back Bay is a beautiful neighborhood—it’s because of these regulations and the people who enforce them.”