ASK THE CANDIDATES
Q3 of 6:
In 2016, at least 26 Craftsman houses were demolished, approved for demolition, or proposed for demolition, the vast majority in South Glendale. This number is up from 10 demolitions in 2015, and only a few annually in the seven previous years. Do you think development is impinging too much on our historic fabric? If so, what do you propose to do about it?
(Candidate name with asterisk indicates TGHS member.)
New is nice, but old is gold. Once a piece of history is destroyed, it is gone forever and can never be replaced. We must ensure that historical properties do not fall into disrepair, and encourage fans of Craftsman homes to purchase and preserve them. It should be made clear in the home buyer’s contract that the home they are purchasing has historical value and cannot be significantly altered. Specifically in regards to Craftsman houses, the city must update its 2006-2007 Craftsman Survey, to encourage the identification of historic Craftsman houses. Craftsman houses are a unique example of Glendale’s historic architectural style. The city must recognize the importance of historical homes, and treat them according to their historical significance.
As I mention in the response to Question 2, yes, development is a concern as it puts pressure on developers and speculators to tear down and build more square footage on a property. We need a balanced growth policy that is mindful of the unique nature and quality of Glendale’s neighborhoods, populated by many beautiful historic buildings; this is something other areas in the region do not have, and is something we should protect in order to preserve Glendale’s neighborhoods.
Yes. See response to Question 2. Enact the regulation I proposed above and enhance the authority of a reconstituted Design Review Board with respect to approving or disapproving proposed demolition of existing structures that have contributed to the architectural history and character of this community.
Development certainly is impinging on the historic character of Glendale. I favor a comprehensive historic resource study and the competition of the Community Plans that would include addressing the preservation of our historic character, as detailed in the response to Question 2. The South Glendale Community Plan is promoting transit-oriented development and has great potential to increase the number of proposed widow and orphan projects. I have represented the GHCC at all the SGCP meetings advocating for the protection of all neighborhoods in South Glendale not only the single-family neighborhoods. Many of the neighborhoods do not have organized representation, and I would promote more effective outreach to all stakeholders, renters and homeowners alike.
Yes, development is impinging too much on our historic fabric when 26 Craftsman homes were demolished, approved for demolition or proposed for demolition in Glendale in 2016. I would not allow contributor homes to a possible historic district to be demolished.
A certain level of development must occur in a city. The problem with development is when it takes away a historic resource. Not every Craftsman home is a historic resource no matter how quaint it may seem. Those historic resources should be clearly identified by the city before the property is sold to a developer who is intent on demolition and redevelopment. The citywide survey of historic resources must be completed and made public for all wishing to buy or develop in the city to be aware.
There will always be pressure from development upon that which is already there. The task is to preserve that which is truly historic without stymying progress. This requires a slow and methodical approach.
Development is absolutely a threat to historic conservation. The value of our land has risen sharply since the housing bubble burst, and homeowners of Glendale reside here on average ten years longer than homeowners elsewhere. So scarcity of stock drives up prices for ownership while we lack any matter of rent control for those who cannot afford it. I would like to partner with our State Representatives in an effort to overturn the statute of the Costa-Hawkins bill that prohibits rent control on buildings built after 1995 – older units that would qualify for stabilization are torn down to make room for new buildings that do not, further incentivizing new development. If we can rent stabilize newer buildings then those units will be further absorbed by the community, lowering demand on housing and slowing development.
As I noted in my previous answer, I do think that development is impinging too much on our historic fabric. I propose that first we drastically slow down the pace of development, in order to conduct proper studies of traffic conditions as they exist today. Once we have a grasp of current conditions, we can make more realistic decisions about further development. Second, we need smarter development and more efforts to deflect projects to sites where they don’t displace as many of our precious historic structures. I would also like to see more of our vanishing Craftsmans designated as historic. These houses are irreplaceable; we will not see their like again so we better preserve them while we still have that opportunity.