Sunday, January 27, 2008

Knott's and Villa Park Elementary School

Today's photos of Knott's Berry Farm in the 1960s came to me from my old friend Mike Tucker who created the Anaheim Colony website long ago. The first (top) photo shows Bud Hurlbut's "Antique Auto Ride," which was later re-named "Tijuana Taxi." (For more about this attraction, you'll want to read the comments in a recent related post on Gorilla's Don't Blog.) The second image shows the Burro Ride attraction when the trail still ran past Calico Square. Eventually, the burro rides were moved across Beach Blvd, to the Jungle Island area, until being discontinued entirely.
A public hearing for the EIR (environmental impact report) for the old Villa Park Elementary School will be held Wednesday, Feb. 13, 7pm, at the school itself: 10551 Center Dr. The two original 1920s Spanish Revival buildings on the campus do not currently meet earthquake codes, and the district wants to tear them down rather than retrofitting them. The school is one of only two sites in Villa Park listed on the national Register of Historic Places, the other being the Smith & Clark Brothers Ranch (1880s) off Santiago Blvd.
However, locals have banded together to offer an alternative plan: Retrofit, update the interiors, and reuse the space as a library, a performing arts classroom, a computer lab, and other learning facilities. Preliminary plans have already been prepared by an architect, but the Orange Unified School District must be dissuaded from tearing everything down. The following website has some additional information and photos, but is quite out of date: Link


Chris Merritt said...

Agggggh! Not the great Auto Ride debate again...

Anonymous said...

The auto ride is currently at Castle Park in Riverside, CA.