Tuesday, March 25, 2008

St. Luke's -- Proposed Development

This picture was taken from behind St. Luke's looking north to the mountains. The hospital fronts Washington Street. Across Washington to the north is the Eaton Wash Reservoir.

At a neighborhood meeting on March 19, developer DS Ventures presented its proposal to build senior housing and medical offices on the St. Luke's site. Pasadena Now's report of the encounter is here.

In later posts, I may talk more about the developer's proposal, its treatment of the landmark St. Luke's buildings (interior and exterior), consistency with the Pasadena General Plan, impacts on traffic and views, and emergency and urgent care issues.

But, let's take a moment to look at this property, its landmark status and its traditional use in service to surrounding communities.

Certainly the St. Luke's buildings are architecturally significant. St. Luke's was one of the first buildings in East Pasadena to be declared a city landmark. In context of the East Pasadena community, which was largely built over the last fifty years, St. Luke's art deco facade stands out as perhaps the most impressive historic structure in this area.

But, the property is also significant because of its long-time use to serve the East Pasadena and Altadena communities. When the Sisters of St. Joseph opened St. Luke's in 1933, it was one of the San Gabriel Valley's first hospitals. As homes were built and the area grew, St. Luke's was there to serve the community's medical needs. The hospital use continued for nearly 70 years until it was closed down in 2002.

Among the many things I like about St. Luke's is the northward face of the hospital buildings. The front of the hospital faces north looking toward the Eaton Wash, Eaton Canyon and the San Gabriel Mountains.

1 comment:

Barbara said...

My father, Robert J. McCullock was chief of staff at St. Luke's for 2 years in a row in the late 60's. There were plaques on the wall at the entry of the hospital listing the names of the different contributors to the hospital.
I'd love to know if they still exist.
I remember going to the hospital some evenings with my dad. When we reached the switchboard, he would lift me up so I could turn on the light showing his name on the staff board.."Dr. McCullock is in the hospital".. My dad would do his rounds and I was deposited in a waiting room until he finished.
Good memories.