Architecture and Design

Arizona Preservation Foundation Releases its Most Endangered Historic Places of 2012

Members of the Arizona Preservation Foundation have been busy this year -- they continue to fight for the livelihood of the David and Gladys Wright House, they lamented the demolition of the Madison Hotel in downtown Phoenix, and they've been focusing their efforts on identifying historic buildings throughout Arizona that in danger.

Arizona's 25 Most Endangered Historic Places is a combination of historic and archaeological sites put together by historians and preservation professionals and is meant to "raise public awareness of preservation issues and focus critical attention on selected sites to assist in their preservation."

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The 2012 list includes six new additions: Arizona State Park system, Broadway Boulevard (Tucson's Sunshine Mile), Courthouse Plaza Miners' Monument in Bisbee, David & Gladys Wright House in Phoenix, Gonzales Martinez House in Tempe, J. N. Denier Tenement House in Florence, and Mesa Citrus Growers Association Building.

"Each of the places we have named is an important historic site, but unfortunately is in grave danger of collapse, demolition, or destruction," writes Arizona Preservation Foundation Board President Jim McPherson. "As our Centennial year draws to a close - the perfect time to reflect on our state's past, present, and future - it is crucial that residents, private interests, and government officials act now to save these elements of our cultural heritage before it is too late."

McPherson notes that five buildings on the 2011 list were destroyed: the 1962 Valley National Bank "Gold Dome" branch was demolished in 2007 by Arizona State University, the 1913 Havasu Hotel in Seligman was demolished in 2008 by the BSNF Railway Company, the 1921-22 Mohave County Hospital was demolished in 2008 by the County, the 1939 Southern Pacific Railroad Depot in Casa Grande suffered significant damage from suspected arson in 2009, and the 1928 Eastman Cotton Gin was demolished by the Town of Buckeye in 2012.

Also notable -- six spots on the 2011 were removed from the list because great efforts were made to secure their livelihood, including Desert Laboratory on Tumamoc Hill in Tucson, Kerr Cultural Center in Scottsdale, Mesa Grande Platform Mound Ruins in Mesa, Old U.S. Highway 80 Bridge between Buckeye and Gila Bend, Second Pinal County Courthouse in Florence, and Valley National Bank (now Chase Bank) at 44th Street & Camelback Road in Phoenix.

This year's list includes:

  • Adamsville Ruins, Coolidge (Pinal County)
  • Arizona State Parks (statewide)
  • Basque Pelota Ball Court, Flagstaff (Coconino County)
  • Broadway Boulevard, Tucson (Pima County)
  • Buckhorn Baths, Mesa (Maricopa County)
  • Camp Naco, Huachuca City (Cochise County)
  • Courthouse Plaza Miners' Monument, Bisbee (Cochise County)
  • David & Gladys Wright House, Phoenix (Maricopa County)
  • Empire-Cienega Ranch (Pima County)
  • First Baptist Church, Phoenix (Maricopa County)
  • Fisher Memorial Home, Casa Grande (Pinal County)
  • Geronimo Station, Geronimo (Graham County)
  • Glendale Tract Community Center, Glendale (Maricopa County)
  • Gonzales Martinez House, Tempe (Maricopa County)
  • J. N. Denier Tenement House, Florence (Pinal County)
  • Maple Ash Neighborhood, Tempe (Maricopa County)
  • Marist College, Tucson (Pima County)
  • Meehan/Gaar House, Casa Grande (Pinal County)
  • Mesa Citrus Growers Association Building, Mesa (Maricopa County)
  • Mountain View Black Officers Club, Sierra Vista (Santa Cruz County)
  • Peter T. Robertson Residence, Yuma (Yuma County)
  • Sage Memorial Hospital School of Nursing, Ganado (Apache County)
  • San Ysidro Ranch Ruins, Yuma (Yuma County)
  • Sun Mercantile Building, Phoenix (Maricopa County)
  • White Gates House, Phoenix (Maricopa County)

Descriptions and photographs of the buildings and areas are available on the Preservation Foundation website and Facebook page, along with rationales of why they've been included by Historian Vince Murray of Prescott and architect Philip Reina of Glendale along with Preservation Foundation volunteers.

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Claire Lawton
Contact: Claire Lawton