Santa Anita Park Chandelier Room
In 2013 the Santa Anita Park moved forward with a remodel of its historic Chandelier Room. The remodel, which community members and the Conservancy voiced concern about has resulted in a partial loss of some of the room’s character-defining features. However, despite its alterations, the Chandelier room still possesses its overall look and feel keeping in line with its history and function.
The Conservancy has worked to preserve the historic Santa Anita Park since 1999. That was when owner Frank Stronach erected large elevator towers that dramatically altered the racetrack’s façade, as well as a new restaurant in the historic grandstand, without submitting the project for appropriate public review.
In April 2007, the Arcadia City Council approved a plan to develop a 830,000-square-foot commercial, retail, and office project on the south parking lot of the racetrack proposed by developer Rick Caruso. The Conservancy is particularly concerned about the potential demolition of the property’s 1938 Saddling Barn and South Ticket Gate.
The Conservancy responded to a Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) on the proposed retail/entertainment project and asked developer Caruso to examine alternatives to this plan, as well as ways to reverse the inappropriate 1999 elevator tower additions.
Given the long-standing threat to Santa Anita Park and the Chandelier Room’s significance, the Conservancy was concerned about any significant alterations to this historic space. The Conservancy understood that design review was required by the City of Arcadia before project approval and permitting.
The Conservancy submitted a letter to Arcadia planning staff in April 2013 detailing the Chandelier Room's historical significance and strongly encouraged the project meets the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards and full compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).