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Route 66 News

Monrovia gas station designated as historic landmark

Monrovia gas station

The city council of Monrovia, California, this week designated a former gas station along an early alignment of Route 66 as a historic landmark.

The city’s Historic Preservation Commission reviewed the property at 805 S. Shamrock Ave. (map here) and recommended the designation.

The report about the property is here (PDF file), but here are some takeaways about it:

— It’s one of three remaining commercial properties along the South Shamrock corridor that was Route 66 from 1926 to 1933.

— The building originally was constructed in 1921 as a fruit stand and a residence and was converted to a gas station in 1926, and it remained that way until the 1940s. A canopy and gasoline island were demolished during the 1940s, but an addition was built by 1945. It operated for many years after the 1940s as a manufacturing site for climate-control systems.

— The building’s interior is unique. “It has a vaulted, arched roof structure with an interior exposed Lamella wood roof system,” the city document stated. “The Lamella roof system was invented in Germany by Frederich Zollinger in 1908. It is a vaulted roof structure consisting of a crisscrossing pattern of parallel arches that create a diamond pattern. This style was brought to the U.S. in the early 1920s, and the subject building is one of the earliest examples making the roof structure a contributing feature.”

— Many of the building’s features from the 1920s to the 1940s remain preserved.

— Norberto Nardi, who has owned the property since 2008, says he’s committed to maintaining its historical integrity.

— The property is across the street from one of two remaining vintage Flying A service stations in Los Angeles County. The other gas station can be clearly seen in this Google Street View link.

Shamrock Avenue also is home to The Market Grill Sandwich Shop, in another historic building.

(Hat tip to Monrovia Weekly; image of the Monrovia gas station from the historic landmark report by the City of Monrovia)

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