Tuesday, June 28, 2005

THE COMMUNITY SPEAKS



Not so surprisingly, other than one certain local business owner -- who happens to be spearheading to move to tear down the gas station and slice down the park -- community response has been overwhelmingly in favor of saving the structure.

From the pages of the Glendale News-Press:

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Article hit contradictory notes on fair

Regarding "Fair drop-in by homeowners group fuels fury," Tuesday:

I was able only to briefly attend the neighborhood fair in Adams Square on Saturday, missing the apparent fireworks, but was struck by some intriguing contradictions in your article.

How can a city-funded "neighborhood" fair be "crashed" by people who actually live in the neighborhood? A neighborhood fair that sees the neighbors as drop-ins isn't very neighborly. Perhaps the city should more carefully screen to whom it dolls out money for such things -- our money, by the way.

It also seems that not all of the merchants have a problem with the gas station -- which, as a newcomer to Glendale, I think is very cool -- as a merchant reportedly donated the booth space for the homeowner's use. I wonder if this is a merchant(s) association or really just a merchant association.

I also wonder if those who oppose what is, to my understanding, an already approved use of this space might have a self-serving interest in an alternate use -- which would also not be very neighborly.

I have been a small-business owner going on 17 years now and can't imagine how any savvy business person with the sense God gave dirt wouldn't see the tremendous opportunity in Adams Square with the gas station as a unique focal point. Where I come from, even dirt knows the definition and importance of a neighborhood.

MICHAEL TEAHAN
Glendale

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Revamped gas station would fuel area aesthetic

I continue to be surprised by the Adams Square Merchants Assn.'s call to tear down the classic 1930s gas station at the corner of Adams Street and Palmer Avenue.

The gas station and the Adams Square building are the two structures that give the neighborhood its art-deco and early century appeal -- an appeal that is central to drawing residents and nonresidents to shop in the neighborhood.

Without both structures, Adams Square becomes simply another random selection of stores with no identity.

And it destroys some of the character that convinced Los Angeles magazine to highlight the neighborhood in its January 2005 issue.

Rather than striving to be ordinary, the merchants association should be celebrating the fact that Adams Square boasts a unique structure that is, remarkably, still standing.

And instead of trying to tear something down, the organization should perhaps channel that energy and instead focus on filling the area's long-vacant storefronts -- including the historic birthplace of the Baskin-Robbins ice cream chain, which has sat empty for far too long.

MICHAEL SCHNEIDER
Glendale

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Gas station in Adams Square is an enterprising opportunity

Regarding the Adams Square gas station, start thinking out of the box. Keep the original structure. Paint in iridescent red and white. Expand the footprint with wide circular windows. Hire car hops. Make it a Bob's. Now here's the really good part. Sell shares to the Adam's Square people first. Then offer purchase rights to city residents. If there any shares left, offer them to neighboring communities. I love this idea.

TIM JAGOE
La Crescenta

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I absolutely agree that the gas station in the Adams Square area should be preserved.

There are precious few of these Streamline Moderne stations left in the U.S., let alone in Los Angeles, so this one should definitely be saved.

It's overhanging canopies can easily be blended into a park setting providing shaded areas while taking up minimal square footage in the park itself.

CHRIS WELCH
Glendale

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I support the preservation of the Adams Hill historical gas station. I am a resident and homeowner of Adams Hill.

REBECCA REES
Glendale

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I do think the gas station should be preserved. I've owned my home in Adams Hill for 13 years and have always thought what a nice little recreation center or cafe that could become.

When a group of my neighbors were trying to buy the property a few years ago I was considering being one of the investors.

Things like that are what give neighborhoods character and identity, we shouldn't be so cavalier about knocking them down for more generic structures.

I was in Plymouth, Mass., last week and read about how some of the original neighborhoods from the 1600s and 1700s were razed and replaced by housing projects in 1964.

Looking back, it seems like a huge and obvious mistake to demolish part of our history like that, but at the time, the people didn't see it.

It's a warning to us -- we should be careful about doing things that will cause us to feel loss in the future.

PAUL BEROLZHEIMER
Glendale

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I am very much in favor of including the restored vintage gas station in the proposed Adams Square park, as proposed by the architecture firm, Rios Clementi Hale.

JANE BROWN
Glendale

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