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Judge Upholds ‘Historic Landmark’ Decision

The First Church of Christ, Scientist will remain the city’s third-ever historic landmark.

The owners of the building that once housed the filed an appeal of the Lakewood’s Planning Commission’s decision that made the 100-year-old building a historic landmark.

California Phone — which owns the property — wasn’t too happy with the ruling and filed the appeal in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court in July.

Judge Shirley Strickland Saffold recently upheld the planning commission’s decision.

“After reviewing the record and the evidence submitted, the appellant’s appeal is not well taken,” according to Saffold’s ruling. “The court hereby finds that the appellant was afforded proper opportunity to raise its arguments at the eligibility and designation hearings.”

The city’s planning commission, as well as LakewoodAlive, the city’s economic development organization, were named as defendants in the case.

The historic designation — one of only three structures in the city with the “landmark” status — means that making changes to the nearly 100-year-old building would be next to impossible.

Changes to the building’s exterior would also not be permitted.

The planning commission is facing another instance of the owners of a building opposing their property as a historic landmark under the city’s ordinance. 

The neighbors of the property at 13474 Edgewater Drive recently submitted the paperwork to make the mansion a historic landmark.

The owners have expressed opposition to the plan.

Chris Olsen January 01, 2013 at 05:05 PM
So the million dollar question is: what next? Who will buy this building and be able to use it effectively? There are signs of deterioration all around it. It will take millions to restore and then what will it be used for? I wonder how much the interior of the place has been destroyed by previous tenants.
Gwenn Seaman January 01, 2013 at 08:34 PM
Although I love older structures that give our community character and preserves our history, I fear it will be like the structure on Edgewater and W 117th. Beautiful, deteriorating and unused....What is the point of that?
r sicha January 01, 2013 at 09:40 PM
The properties designated thus far by the Planning Commission are the Oldest Stone House, the St. James Church Complex (church, rectory, school/hall), and the former First Church of Christ Scientist.
The original Bill January 01, 2013 at 11:19 PM
This is truly a shame. While I applaud the Planning Commission for their efforts to preserve an actual landmark like the Old Stone House, much like St James Church this is a waste of that designation. That property will never be bought and used as a Church yet it would be a perfect spot for that boutique hotel the City of Lakewood is considering now.
Colin McEwen January 02, 2013 at 04:56 AM
Sorry, Lee. Just accidentally left it out. Some of the other comments indicate the correct info. The two others are St. James Catholic Church and the Oldest Stone House on Lake Ave.

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