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Historic resources under threat of demolition because the historic resources survey begun thirty-three years ago was never finished, leaving many resources unidentified, unprotected and at risk.  

415 Fairfax

Demolished April 28, 2023.  Built in 1933, the venerable 90 year old home was a contributor to the National Register eligible Baywood Historic District due to its high level of architectural integrity.  Disregarding its contribution to a potential historic district, City Planning allowed demolition on the grounds that the home was not 'individually' significant.


564 Edinburgh

Demolished in 2023.  Like 415 Fairfax, the architectural integrity of this home qualified it as a 'contributor' to a National Register eligible historic district.  CEQA requires it to be evaluated in the context of its contribution to a historic resource.  Despite CEQA requirements, the City limited its review to 'individual' significance.


Japanese American Cultural Center

Circa 1865, the Japanese-American Cultural Center is one of the oldest continually occupied structures in San Mateo.  Individually eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places, the simple Gothic Revival building is free of alterations and retains its original form, detailing and integrity. It continues to be used to serve the Japanese-American community.  It is proposed for demolition and replacement by a mixed-use office building known as Block 20.



This space reserved for the next historic building proposed for demolition.


Downtown Historic District

The new General Plan 2040 will  impact the Downtown Historic District.  By adopting SMHA's Recommended Alternative Historic Resources Element as part of the General Plan, the City can protect historic resources and encourage appropriate new infill development while avoiding adverse impacts to the Downtown Historic District.



City-wide Resources

Unless current General Plan policies that support historic resource protection are retained and strengthened in the new General Plan 2040, historic resources in every neighborhood will be at risk.  That is why San Mateo Heritage Alliance has submitted a Recommended Alternative Historic Resources Element to the City.



"So much of our future lies in preserving our past."   

  - Peter Westbrook, Olympic Fencing Champion and Author

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