Few of Arcadia’s current residents will recognize this photo of Arcadia’s City Hall
that appeared shortly after its dedication in March 1949. The cost of the building pleased the taxpayers because neither a cent of new taxes nor bonded indebtedness were required to finance it. The building cost $211,387. The sale of the old city property (four lots on the north west corner of First Avenue and Huntington Drive) along with admission tax funds collected from the racetrack made this possible. (In May 1947, the City Council purchased thirteen acres of land located between the Pacific Electric tracks and Huntington Drive for $39,324.
This purchase made land available for a new Civic Center.) The new location for Arcadia’s Civic Center irritated many residents. They argued that the area was “out in the boondocks” and that traffic congestion caused by racetrack operations would be insurmountable. Many residents were saddened that the stately and unique City Hall, built in 1918, had to be demolished.
By the way, do you see a similarity of design in First Avenue Middle School to this photo of City Hall?