According to Brigham Yen’s blog, the Pasadena city council voted 6-1 earlier this month to permit the IDS Playhouse Plaza to go ahead. Apparently, the project had met with some resistance from the neighbors, but many think the 5-story mixed-use development will revitalize the area. Personally, I think the development looks a bit big, not so much for Colorado Blvd. but the side facing El Molino. The Pasadena Playhouse District is characterized by a lot of cute commercial buildings. The area is sleepy but far from run down, and from the architectural rendering, it seems like the Playhouse Plaza will dwarf the famed Pasadena Playhouse that’s right across the small side street from it.
I was in the area and I couldn’t resist taking a picture of the furniture store that’s on the site now and doing a then-and-now style comparison. I’m not sure what to call it, though.
In a similar vein, here’s a then and now comparison of Macy’s on Lake. The building was originally built as Bullock’s Pasadena, designed by architects Walter Wurdeman and Welton Becket. The architectural rendering on the left is dated December 21, 1944 (coincidentally 66 years ago today). I couldn’t get the same angle of the Del Mar entrance, as a new retail building housing a Trader Joe’s was constructed right up against it a few years ago. Thankfully, Macy’s hadn’t ruined the interior of the old Bullock’s, and in fact restored it within this last year. It’s a beautiful place to shop. There aren’t too many old department stores left.