Glendale zoners have denied an appeal by a builder seeking to move a landmark Victorian house across town into a residential neighborhood and convert it to an office.
By a 3-1 vote, the Glendale Board of Zoning Adjustment last Thursday refused developer Sal Gangi's request to move the E. D. Goode house from 119 N. Cedar St. to land he owns on Monterey Road near the Ventura Freeway. The house was built in 1889 by Edgar D. Goode, one of Glendale's founding fathers.
Board members said they felt that a commercial use was inappropriate in the residential neighborhood.
"It just doesn't seem like it fits on that corner," board Chairman Frank Roberts said.
Gangi said he entered into an agreement to buy the property from the Rodriguez family of El Cajon contingent on getting city approval to move and restore the house. A Gangi spokesman said the builder will probably appeal the zoning board's decision to City Council.
Meanwhile, another prospective buyer has offered to restore the house at its original site. Joe Ayvazi, owner of Broadway Realtors & Investment Co. in Glendale, said he has reached a verbal agreement with the Rodriguez family to purchase the house if the Gangi agreement falls through.
"If Mr. Gangi's proposal is denied by the city, we will open escrow," said Ayvazi, a 27-year Glendale resident. "I'm hoping to make it a landmark in the city of Glendale."
The Rodriguez family could not be reached for comment.
Two years ago, Ayvazi considered restoring the Goode House and converting it into a bed-and-breakfast inn but decided the plan was not financially feasible.
This week, Ayvazi said he wants to renovate the home for use as offices. He said he also plans to buy the lots on either side of the Goode House and build more offices there that would complement the architecture of the Goode House.
Zone Change Necessary
To do so, Ayvazi would need a zone change because the property is zoned for multiple residential use. Gangi, in his discussions with city officials, has proposed building apartments on the Cedar Street site.
The Victorian house is one of the two remaining Queen Anne/Eastlake style homes in Glendale. The other is the Doctor's House, which was renovated and moved to Brand Park, where it serves as a museum.
The Goode House features stained-glass windows, French doors and fish-scale sidings, but years of neglect have caused structural damage.
City officials have long looked for a way to restore the house. Two years ago, its prospective destruction prompted Glendale to pass an emergency law to preserve sites of historic importance. At the time, the Rodriguez family was considering selling the property to developers who intended to tear it down and build apartments.
Opposition to Plan
Gangi's proposal to preserve the house would convert it to an office in a residential neighborhood. It has met with staunch opposition by Monterey Street residents as well as the Glendale Historical Society.
At last week's meeting, five such residents told the zoning board that allowing a commercial use in their quiet neighborhood would aggravate traffic, noise and parking problems.
Members of the historic society said also that the house, if moved, would lose some of its historical and architectural significance. The society has applied to have the house declared a National Historic Monument.
Gangi has until March 6 to file his appeal.