Push to declare Hotel Fresno a historic place

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The Hotel Fresno has sat empty since 1983 but getting on the National Register of Historic Places could get a revitalization project going. (KFSN)

The Hotel Fresno is broken down and boarded up, but it holds so many memories for some people.

Built in 1913, the city's oldest hotel was also the biggest between Los Angeles and San Francisco.

It was the place to be seen.

"It's sort of this ghost of the golden age of downtown Fresno and the fact that it's still existing is Americana itself," said Laura Van Onna, a historic preservation specialist.

She is trying to get the Hotel Fresno to join the downtown water tower and the Meux Home on the National Register of Historic Places.

Historical significance is a key factor.

It was once regarded as the most lavish hotel of its kind, even though it only cost a buck to stay back in the day.

The building features the work of architect Edward J. Foulkes. "He is known for his sophisticated knowledge of neo-classical traditions in building," said Van Onna.

The Hotel Fresno is now owned by APEC International of Los Angeles. Getting it on the national register could help bring new life to this building.

Van Onna explains, "A certified historic property that's pursuing a certified rehabilitation project is eligible for a 20% rehabilitation tax credit."

APEC wants to refurbish the building to create more housing downtown.

The hearing on whether the Hotel Fresno can be added to the register is set for May 17th. It appears to meet the criteria.
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