Petition Closed

Help Save the historic DOWNTOWN MOTOR HOTEL

This petition had 331 supporters




was designed by Tucson's preeminent 20th Century architect, Josias Joesler, and built in 1941 on South Stone Avenue. This unassuming structure is unique in that it embodies early Mid-Century Modern architecture as it developed in the southwest. It also shows the strength of Joesler's aesthetic adaptability as he had to embrace new ideas that were coming to the forefront of contemporary architecture throughout the United States.

Out of town developer Bethel Inc. along with Compass Affordable Housing, are seeking to demolish this historic property and build a 4 story, 44 unit, low income housing complex. Using $10.5 million of our tax dollars through Low Income Housing Tax Credits, this stick and stucco structure will Adversely Effect the historic neighborhoods of Armory Park and Barrio Historico/Libre and change forever the fabric, sight lines, context and materials of these historic places. 

We want to emphasize that we are not against low income housing. This is about historic preservation and quality of life. As proposed, this building has no green space, no balconies, no windows in the living room areas and very limited parking.


Because of the DOWNTOWN MOTOR HOTEL's historic listing and the use of tax credits by the developer, a Section 106 process was triggered which brings this proposal under greater scrutiny by the federal Advisory Council on Historic Preservation.

The basic tenets of a Section 106 process are:


In a severely flawed 106 run by the City of Tucson, the city has refused to seriously look at ways to refurbish the existing structure, AVOID its demolition, and put it to reuse. The developer has done little to nothing to MINIMIZE or change the existing design and the city - instead of inducing the developer to creatively alter their design and bring it more in line with the historic fabric of the neighborhoods - has rushed to mitigation and are pressuring the consultants involved to accept an unsound and compromised agreement.


In its rush to support and inform the developer at every turn, the city has also done little to inform neighbors, many of whom speak no English or have no computer access, of the negative impact this will have on their property values and the historic nature of the places they have called home for decades. The city has systematically shut out many people directly next to and across the street from this invasive development and these citizens now have no voice in a process that will have negative effects on their lives forever.

We ask Sally Stang, who is head of the COT Section 106, to go back and run this Section 106 properly. We ask her to seriously look at ways to AVOID the destruction of this historic property and work with citizens and neighbors to develop our historic neighborhoods in a thoughtful and useful way. We ask for public meetings to add meaningful and inclusive comments that inform the design and mitigation to the satisfaction of residents.

We ask Steve Kozachik, city council member from Ward 6, to support his constituents and fight with us in opposition to this awful, invasive structure. 

We ask Mayor Jonathan Rothschild to take this matter under advisement and side with historic preservation and Tucson citizens, not with destructive developers who do nothing to enhance the quality of life in our beautiful, historic city. Restore this piece of history and make it low income housing - but do not demolish it!


As neighbors in Armory Park and Barrio Historico/Libre, we ask you to please sign this petition and then take a few minutes to email Sally Stang and voice your opposition to this monster building.

We can make a difference if enough people speak out!

Sign this petition then send your letters to:

As Concerned Citizens of Armory Park & Barrio Historico/Libre, we Thank You - y Muchas Gracias.

[The illustration is based on architectural drawings from the developer. Because the developer has refused to provide any drawings within the historical context of the neighborhood - we have asked for almost a year - we cannot vouch for the accuracy of this rendering...but it is close!] 

Today: Gary is counting on you

Gary Patch needs your help with “Sally Stang, Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, Steve Kozachik: Help Save the historic DOWNTOWN MOTOR HOTEL”. Join Gary and 330 supporters today.