Downtown Fullerton: The Brick Myth, The Reality of Brick Veneer, and The Legacy of Schlock

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We published a couple of posts a few days ago on the new parking structure planned on Santa Fe Avenue, and how it is proposed to be faced with brick veneer.

You may remember that I got to thinking about why the city staff would tell the RDRC that the $40,000,000 parking structure must have brick veneer; and that I asked one of the RDRC Board members that very same question, and the answer I got was that staff told the Committee that the City has to use brick veneer because it was a “State” requirement to meet the CEQA guidelines. (I also noted that the use of fake brick is in complete contrast to the sustainable design the General Plan Advisory Committee has spend the last 3 years discussing and recommending to the City Council).

CEQA? Yes CEQA he said, because there’s a provision in the CEQA guidelines that requires to mitigate any visual impacts. In other words, since the new parking structure was being built with structural concrete, and that the surrounding downtown has many brick-looking buildings that using the brick veneer would cause no visual impact on the environment. I say “brick-looking” because so many of the buildings in downtown Fullerton are faced with fake brick veneers, facades that are not historic, and some of which, in fact, were stuck-on older buildings during the course of Redevelopment in the last 30 years. And many of these were subsidized by the taxpayers of Fullerton.  Read more.


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