Members and officers of the Glendale Historical Society have raised an excellent question: “Does Glendale's future really depend on destroying its past?” (“Why is the city destroying links to its past?” Mailbag, May 31.) My answer is no.
It is distressing that five historic properties listed in Glendale's current Downtown Specific Plan as potentially deserving of entry in either the California Register of Historic Places or in the Glendale Register of Historic Resources are slated for possible demolition.
Their letter points out that “nearby cities” have achieved both growth and economic development by preserving and reusing irreplaceable historic resources. We don't have to look far for a city that has the vibrant “18-hour” city life that our city council claims to want in downtown Glendale.
There are factors not easily replicated that have given our older, smaller neighbor to the east a deeper arts, culture and entertainment scene, but creative, adaptive reuse of historic structures is one part of their strategy. It is a course we can emulate in Glendale — we need only the will.