May is Preservation Month!

Historic Friend Paper Building – now The Sofa Co.

So, May is Preservation Month, an effort spearheaded by the National Trust for Historic Preservation that began in 1971 as Preservation Week and was expanded to a month-long celebration in 2005. According to the City of Pasadena:

The 2010 Preservation Month theme is Old is the New Green. In Pasadena, preservation month has been celebrated since 2004 with an annual awards program that recognizes positive contributions to historic preservation in the city. Awards are given to property owners and designers/architects and contractors for exceptional historic resource restoration or rehabilitation projects. Awards have also been given to recognize individuals that have contributed to multiple projects and for positive infill projects in historic neighborhoods.

Awards will be presented on May 27, 2010 at 6:00pm at Dabney Hall, CalTech. Click here for directions and on flyer for additional information.

Among the projects that will receive a 2010 Historic Preservation Award for outstanding “rehabilitation,” as decided by the Historic Preservation Commission, we are pleased to congratulate two honorees from Old Pasadena:

55-61 East Colorado Boulevard – Dan Mellinkoff
From the National Register of Historic Places:

Constructed: 1889
Frost Building Altered: 1919, D.C. McCallum, builder
This two-story building was the original Pasadena store of Wetherby and Kayser, an old Los Angeles shoe business owned by Eva Fenyes, a prominent local citizen. The simple façade of white glazed brick is ornamented by a boxed cornice at the roof line and simple pilasters framing the street level entrance to the second story. Six single-pane windows are arranged asymmetrically on the second story. The alley façade has arched windows and entrance, and a distinctive metal sliding door. Architectural details include leaded glass transoms, pressed metal cornices, and a decorative metal gate. The building was damaged in a fire, but underwent a certified rehabilitation in 2004.

55-61 East Colorado
55-61 East Colorado Boulevard

The new tenant, Chicago-based Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea, will be the Los Angeles area’s third Intelligentsia, following the Silver Lake and Venice locations.  They are slated to open this Summer and will be a welcome addition to East Colorado.

100 West Green Street
Friend Paper Company Building
Constructed: 1964 by architects Whitney Smith + Wayne Williams
Now the home of The Sofa Company, PappaRich, Onesipkim, and the De Lacey at Green lofts and town houses, the remodeled mid-century building looks better than ever.

Friend Paper Company Building
Friend Paper Company Building

From The Sofa Company website:

The Historic “Friend Paper” Building
The Friend family, long associated with the paper industry and graphic arts in America, contracted the construction of the Friend Paper building in 1965. Designed by one of Pasadena’s native sons, leading architect Whitney R. Smith, its architectural style is a union of Classicism and Modernism, termed New Formalism. Native river rock within the pre-cast concrete is an example of this type of architecture’s use of traditional, rich materials.

Friend Paper - The Sofa Company

In 2007, the new condos opened directly behind the historic building, but the  Friend Paper building was still neglected and empty. TSC found the retro architecture inspiring and imagined transforming the old shell into a new presence at the foot of these modern condos. About 12 months later, TSC launched the new opening of 100 W. Green Street with an expanded building of 8,000 sq. ft. including a hot new loft that overlooks Old Pasadena.

Help the National Trust for Historic Preservation win $200,000 from the Members Project of American Express It’s super easy. Just click here and vote by Sunday, May 23!  You don’t even have to register if you have a Facebook account.

From their web page:

Take Part: We Need Your Vote. We’re down to the wire and looking to you to help us in a very important online voting campaign – American Express TakePart. Voting ends on May 23 – this Sunday – and we are in a dead heat with our main competitor. We’re at the point where every vote counts, and the $200,000 we are so close to winning is money that will go a long way in helping us save places that matter. Voting is particularly easy for Facebook users, because you’re able to login using Facebook Connect, so signing on is a one-click process. Visit now to vote, and then tell your Facebook friends by using the share button on the voting page. Thank you so much for your help!


2 Responses to “May is Preservation Month!”

  1. Cafe Pasadena Says:

    Thank you for the historical background.

  2. jswartz Says:

    There is so much interesting background on each building to be found in the application/documentation for our National Historic Register status. I hope to write more about it in the future.

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