Images: Tropico Station
Glendale’s Historic Preservation Commission has unanimously approved Disney’s plan for the restoration of Grand Central Air Terminal. The plan includes structural upgrades and rehabilitation of interior spaces to include a visitor center, office and event space.
According to LA Curbed and Tropico Station, the Historic Preservation Commission approved the project with two conditions, one that Disney adds a “beacon element to the control tower, use glass in one area for historical accuracy, and two to consider allowing greater public access than required by a 2000 development agreement and place an airplane of the appropriate period on the site.”
The Grand Central Air Terminal is known as being a “centerpiece of Glendale’s role in aviation history” and the renovation will bring much deserved restoration to the building. Disney’s restoration plan specifically includes “extensive structural stabilization and seismic upgrades, restoration of the exterior and rehabilitation of significant interior spaces so the building can be adaptively reused as a visitor center, office and event space for the surrounding Disney Grand Central Creative Complex.”
Grand Central’s historical significance includes being the departure site for the U.S.’s first regularly schedule coast-to-cast flight piloted by Charles Lindberg and was a departure point for other famous pilots such as Amelia Eahart, Wiley Post, Jack Northrop and Howard Hughes, according to Tropico Station. During WWII, the airport was used as a military based and a place to train pilots to fly the P-38 Lightning fighter. The airport closed in the 1950s and has since been used as offices and warehouses. Disney purchased the building in 1997.
The agreement between Disney and the city states that all work will be complete by the end of 2015.