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LA Conservancy Picks Preservation Winners

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[Image of Award Winner: Biscuit Company Lofts By Flickr User maubrowncow]

The LA Conservancy has announced its winners for its 2009 Preservation Awards, and the winners include some of our favorite restoration projects, including Cole's, the Malibu Pier, the Hollywood Palladium, and the application for Historic-Cultural Monument status for Griffith Park. Yes, even a well-worded application can win you an award. Winners will be feted at an awards luncheon May 14th at the Biltmore Hotel downtown.

(LOS ANGELES, March 25, 2009) – The Los Angeles Conservancy has announced the recipients of its 28th annual Preservation Awards, which recognize outstanding achievement in the field of historic preservation. As always, this year’s winning projects reflect a wide range of efforts to preserve L.A. County’s architectural heritage. “We received more applications this year than any other, making the competition particularly tough,” said Linda Dishman, the Conservancy’s executive director. “We congratulate the winners for their excellent work and commitment to preserving the rich cultural heritage of L.A. County.”

The winners are:

· President's Award: Robert W. Winter, Ph.D. -- This renowned architectural historian, author, and educator has spent decades fostering awareness and appreciation of Los Angeles' built environment. As co-author of the definitive guide to historic Los Angeles architecture, he helped change the public's perception of the city and create a culture of preservation.

· Biscuit Company Lofts, Downtown Los Angeles -- This adaptive reuse of a 1925 industrial building renewed a neglected historic resource while anchoring a vibrant new community in the Arts District of downtown Los Angeles.

· Cole's, Originators of the French Dip, Downtown Los Angeles -- The careful restoration of this iconic, century-old downtown L.A. eatery provided much-needed upgrades while fiercely protecting its historic integrity in a model of restraint.

· First Church of Christ, Scientist, Pasadena -- An ambitious project with a stunningly low budget installed a new, essentially invisible, structural system in a monumental landmark--without hindering a single church service.

· Griffith Park City of Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument Application, Los Angeles –; A 400-page nomination paved the way for the landmark designation of the largest interurban wilderness park in the U.S., widely promoting the value of historic cultural landscapes.

· Hollywood Palladium, Hollywood -- An entertainment icon, vulnerable to demolition for years, finally made its comeback as the crown jewel of a new development in Hollywood--a shining example for other projects in the district.

· La Laguna de San Gabriel Historic Structures Report and Preservation Plan, San Gabriel -- A unique project laid the essential groundwork for the preservation of a unique resource: a 1960s playground, recently threatened with demolition and emblematic of a building type too often lost.

· Malibu Pier, Malibu -- The State of California showed solid stewardship of this beloved public resource by reversing decades of decay while staying true to its historic character.

· Mark Taper Forum, Downtown Los Angeles -- This project expanded and upgraded a key cultural destination while retaining its historic integrity--and demonstrated the value of resources from the 1960s, which are now coming of age.

· Pisgah Village, Highland Park -- By turning neglected structures into a cohesive village with low-income senior housing, this project showed how preservation and new construction can work together toward social ends.

Biscuit Lofts

1850 Industrial St., Los Angeles, CA