Monday, August 24, 2009

City requirements hold up offer to restore and move old church in San Pedro

From the LA Times-

Donald Scott spent much of his youth attending services at old St. Peter's Episcopal Church, which now sits in the Harbor View Memorial Cemetery in San Pedro.

So it saddens him that the tiny, white wood-shingled building constructed 125 years ago and deemed a historical landmark would end up in the condition it is now. The church, which has been locked for more than 20 years, long ago fell into disrepair and has become a target for vandals.

"I hate to go into this church," said Scott, 78, whose two older sisters are buried on the cemetery grounds. "I spent the first 30 years of my life here. It's painful to go inside."

Scott and others are hoping the building can be saved.

Green Hills Memorial Park in nearby Rancho Palos Verdes offered to rescue the deteriorating church more than a year ago, volunteering to spend $300,000 to move the building onto its property on Western Avenue. It would be restored and reopened as a chapel for funerals, weddings and other services.

But the Los Angeles Office of Historic Resources has informed Green Hills that it must work with a city-appointed architect to refurbish the old church, and also submit to annual inspections to ensure the building is properly maintained.

The city's demands have upset Green Hills officials, who have stalled the project amid concerns about increasing costs. They point out that the church has been the property of the city of Los Angeles for decades and that it has failed to keep up the building.

More here-,0,7335378.story

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