Save the Historic Central Valley Cheese Buildings From Being Demolished

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UPDATE: On 3/22/18 City Council denied Producers Dairy permit to demo these historic buildings. BUT, THIS ISN'T OVER.

We will keep this petition running to encourage Mayor Lee Brand and the City of Fresno to hold Producers Dairy to the covenant that they signed 26 years ago when they purchased these buildings, where they agreed to the City of Fresno and the Tower District neighborhood residents to maintain these historic buildings, which at the time had only been vacant for FOUR years. The buildings current state and their deterioration over the past 26 years, is because of Producers Dairy lack of maintenance and lack of compliance to the covenant that they signed and agreed to. Please sign this petition if you would like the City of Fresno to hold Producers Dairy accountable to the legally binding covenant that they signed. 

The Central Valley Cheese Buildings, located on Belmont & Roosevelt in the historic Tower District neighborhood, will be DEMOLISHED and turned into a PARKING LOT.

IN DANGER: The City of Fresno’s Historic Preservation Committee found the buildings eligible for designation on the Local Historic Register, but the Fresno City Council voted not to designate them (a 4-3 vote).

Producers Dairy (who owns the property) is asking the City of Fresno for permission to demolish these historic buildings, to create a parking area for their trucks, since a portion of their parking will be taken away due to the High Speed Rail.

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                      DANGER TO TOWER DISTRICT NEIGHBORHOOD 

"This industrial project will host a 24 hour operation of truck and trailer ingress and egress. Producer's does not deny that the operation will also include trailer maintenance, tire changes, cleaning, and the associated operation of powered maintenance equipment and tools in the midst of this residential neighborhood. The proposed project would also allow regular, heavy, and, normally prohibited, truck-trailer traffic on residential streets (Roosevelt and Ferger Avenues) to enter and exit the parking lot. The southern half of the perimeter of the subject property is surrounded by at least 8 residential properties."

"Why is an already marginalized and disadvantaged community made to suffer the worst impacts of industrial, economic activity? The proposed project will increase the number of parked truck trailers on the site from the current 30 to a new maximum of 67 trailers, a whopping 123% increase of parked refrigerated truck trailers." "The project will "result" in an additional 20 round-trip truck-trailer trips per day, for a total of at least 70 round-trips daily, seven days a week (for a total of 140 trips per day) and "approximately 182 truck movement events.""

"Again, 24 hours, day and night."

-Bruce A. Owdom, Attorney at Law

-Paul E. Pierce

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Recommendation by the Historic Preservation Committee to the City of Fresno: "Staff recommends that the Commission find that the Mission Revival style masonry brick buildings constructed in 1929-1932 and located at 405-450 E. Belmont Avenue are eligible for listing on the Local Register of Historic Resources under Criterion iii. Staff further recommends that the properties be forwarded to the Fresno City Council for designation pursuant to FMC 12-1609."

*Click here for the recommendation made by the Historic Preservation Committee to list these buildings as historic properties, based on their meeting the criteriaDesignation as Historic Properties

The City of Fresno’s Historic Preservation Committee clearly found these buildings worth designating as historically significant to Fresno. This petition is to show Producers Dairy and the City of Fresno that we want Fresno’s history saved! If you believe we have lost enough historic buildings in Fresno, show your support to not add another to that list by signing this petition.

HISTORY: The building wrapping the Belmont/Roosevelt corner was initially constructed in 1929 as a one story Milk Bottling Plant for the Parkside Dairy. The one-story complex to the south facing onto Roosevelt was initially constructed in 1932 as an ice cream plant. By 1932 both buildings were owned by Golden State Company Limited and by 1963 the complex was identified as Golden State Division of Foremost Dairies, Inc.

ARCHITECTURE: The buildings are a late expression of the Mission Revival style architecture. Mission Revival developed first in California in the late 1890’s as an attempt by architects and contractors to create an American style, based on an indigenous building tradition. Character defining features include the curvilinear gables (roof parapet or dormer) red tile roof, visor roofs, coping at the cornice line, wide overhanging waves and bell towers on larger commercial buildings or homes. Both the Santa Fe and Southern Pacific adopted the style for stations and resorts throughout the West. Mission Revival architecture faded from view following World War I as the Spanish eclectic style developed and spread. *There are relatively few commercial examples of Mission style in Fresno.

The argument has been made that these buildings have sat in disrepair for too long and would need to be retrofitted in order to re purpose/renovate the structures. A prime example of a brick building (in Fresno) that was in similar condition, is the historic 1913 Parker Nash building, located at 1460 Broadway. Cliff Tutelian retrofitted the structure that had sat vacant for decades and was only used for a parking garage, and today it is home to Kepler Neighborhood Charter School. Click here: Parker Nash Building



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