University Town Center

University Town Center (HM16GE)

Location: Santa Cruz, CA 95060 Santa Cruz County
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Country: United States of America
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N 36° 58.312', W 122° 1.541'

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A Site History

— 1856 - 1999 —

1856 Architects Row
Farms and orchards surrounded the site's original buildings. These were the 1856 home and office of architect Thomas Beck and 1861 home and office of architects John Morrow and John Williams north of Beck's. Churches Morrow and Williams built were the 1863 Methodist, 1864 Episcopal, 1867 Baptist and 1867 Presbyterian. Beck designed the 1857 Catholic Church and 1866 county Court House, helped get the town's first newspaper (the Sentinel and Journal) and first public library. He moved to Watsonville in 1866, invented the "Beck Fruit Dryer," and served as California Secretary of State under Governor Pacheco.
1880 Wilkens House Inn
The tourist boom at the 1880 completion of the county railroad, prompted Peter Wilkins to expand the Beck home into a hotel known for its flowers. Across the street, his farm and apple orchard extended to the river, providing the hotel's dairy, eggs, meat, and produce.
1893 Grand Central Hotel
In 1893 the hotel was aligned with the street and remodeled as the Grand Central Hotel. The name became synonymous with this part of town, and was used by surrounding businesses. It was replaced with a five story Grand Central Station and offices for the uncompleted Ocean Shore Railroad, but the 1906 earthquake led to the line's demise.
1908 Hotel Metrapole
Morrow moved his cottage to Laurel St. in 1893, and the Hotel Metrapole was built in 1908, north of the Grand Central building. It's shops included the City of Paris store beginning in 1909, the National Dollar Store in 1934, followed by Plaza Books from 1973-1989.
1941 Department Store
The Grand Central was demolished in 1941 when Cathcart Street was extended west to Pacific Avenue. In 1946, an art deco department store by Pasatiempo architect William Wurster housed J.C. Penny's and later the Chas. Ford Store. It was destroyed in the 1989 earthquake, when a wall of the Metrapole building fell through the roof, causing the death of 75-year-old Kay Trieman.
1999 University Town Center
University Town Center revives the tradition of Pacific Avenue's "College Corners" (1869-1942), a cluster of businesses and teachers colleges, seminaries, and student hotels between Walnut and Lincoln streets. The new building design incorporates heritage elements of downtown architecture, with its Alpine influence, Cooper House style yellow brick, grand tower, hip roof, art deco panels, and upstairs meeting rooms.
Design & Text for plaques:
Ross Eric Gibson
HM NumberHM16GE
Year Placed1999
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, September 26th, 2014 at 4:20am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)10S E 586723 N 4092194
Decimal Degrees36.97186667, -122.02568333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 36° 58.312', W 122° 1.541'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds36° 58' 18.72" N, 122° 1' 32.46" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)408, 831, 650
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 1101 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz CA 95060, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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