Second piece of history saved

Burbank City Council has saved a second piece of residential history.

Council members last week approved the historic designation of a two-story, wood-framed farm house at 834 E. Magnolia Blvd. — only the second house in Burbank to make it on the historic list since the city’s preservation laws were passed in 1994.

The home’s owners, Kent and Marlene Burton, have made some modifications to the house, built in 1910, such as adding a wood deck in the backyard and replacing the front windows. But the changes have not significantly altered the structure and are reversible if property owners decide to return the house to its original state in the future, according to a city report.

“I just think it’s really important that we try to retain some of what Burbank is all about,” Marlene Burton said. “If we didn’t do that, eventually all these old houses would go down.”


The 2,088-square-foot farm house has six bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms.

Marlene Burton said one of the bedrooms is used as a den and another serves as an office.

When they moved into the house, the additional bedrooms were needed.

“We had three children, so we needed the extra space,” Marlene Burton said.


Any future exterior modifications must now be approved by the Burbank Heritage Commission.

The house met two criteria contained in the city’s historic preservation ordinance — both tied to its design. The house, with its gabled front roof, features a mix of late Queen Anne and early Craftsman designs. Assistant Community Development Director Michael Forbes said few houses with those architectural styles are left in the city.

It was one of the first houses built along Magnolia Boulevard. A photo taken in 1914 shows that stretch of road at the time, Forbes said. The area was primarily fields and farmland, except one house — its peaked roof can be seen above the trees.

Forbes said several residents have expressed interest in having their properties considered for historic designation, but only one application has been filed.

Heritage commissioners are contacting some local businesses to see if their owners would like to pursue historic preservation. Two businesses of interest are Foster’s Freeze on Glenoaks Boulevard and the Burbank Bar and Grill on San Fernando Road, said commission Chairman Don Baldaseroni.

Owners of historically designated structures can apply for property tax exemptions under the Mills Act, which the Burbank City Council approved in 2010.