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San Gabriel Valley Digest

Claremont : Cafe Additions Rejected

November 04, 1990

The City Council Tuesday rejected a proposal to add a roof, a wall and stained glass panels to a popular Yale Avenue site.

The council voted 3 to 2 to prohibit proposed additions to Walter's Restaurant because they would not conform to the city land-use code and the Claremont Design Plan. The changes were proposed by attorney Herbert Hafif, who owns the Claremont Professional Building, where the restaurant is located.

Walter's, a popular lunchtime spot for business people and merchants, was placed on the Claremont Register of Sites of Historical and Architectural Merit in 1980. The restaurant features several bungalows surrounded by a landscaped courtyard and distinctive windows, doors, roofs and stoops.

The council approved one portion of the proposal, to extend a roof over the patio along Yale. But council members agreed with Sharon Z. Wood, director of community development, that the proposed wall and stained glass panels would detract from the "outdoor cafe" ambience of Walter's and that a separate roof linking the bungalows would be incompatible with their design.

Mayor Nicholas Presecan and Councilman Algird Leiga voted against the resolution, arguing that council should not determine the architectural character of interiors that are not exposed to public view.

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