Commission Expected to Vote on Relocating Two Historic Buildings

Published : Monday, March 6, 2017 | 5:52 AM

The City of Pasadena’s Historic Preservation Commission is expected on Tuesday, March 7 to finalize its recommendations to the Design Commission about a project to relocate two historic buildings in the campus of Las Encinas Hospital in Pasadena, and to construct an independent-living building and an assisted living/memory care building on the site.

The project also involves construction of subterranean parking facilities for 92 cars and surface parking for 15 cars within the hospital campus.

Las Encinas Hospital is part of the Southern California Sanitarium Historic District which is associated with a major medical facility that contributed to the historical development of Pasadena. The site represents an important period (1904-1929) in the history of the City, which was one of phenomenal economic and demographic growth.

At its regular public meeting Tuesday, the Commission will hear a report from David Reyes, Director of the City’s Planning and Community Development department, about the recommendations that include requiring the project proponent to submit additional documentation about the plan to relocate and rehabilitate the Las Palmas and The Lodge buildings at the hospital.

The Department is seeking documentation about the condition of the exterior cedar shingles at The Lodge to find out if some of them are still salvageable; it is also asking the Design Commission, through the Historical Preservation Commission, to require the proponent to submit dimensioned drawings of the existing buildings and a window and door inventory and product specifications of any new windows or doors to be installed.

Reyes said the requirements are being sought to make sure the historic character of each of the two buildings is preserved after relocation and rehabilitation.

The City Council started deliberating on a Las Encinas Hospital Master Development Plan in 2009 and has since referred the project to the Design Commission and the Historic Preservation Commission as mandated under the Pasadena Municipal Code.

Aside from the relocation and rehabilitation of Las Palmas and The Lodge buildings, a new 164,486-square-foot one-to-three story independent living building, and 31,915-square-foot two-story assisted living building will be constructed on the property.

The assisted-living building is close to La Vista, a Mediterranean-style contributing structure to be retained inside the Las Encinas campus.

During its period of significance, between 1904 and 1929, the sanitarium was a premiere facility for the treatment of mental disorders. The facility emphasized a healthy physical and social environment for its patients. It played a significant role in the field of health care in the community as well as in the greater Los Angeles region.

The Historic Preservation Commission meeting on Tuesday starts at 6 p.m. at the Hearing Room of the George Ellery Hale at 175 N. Garfield Avenue in Pasadena.

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