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ADHDA Presents Certificate to JC Penney for Facase Improvements

Tue, Oct 19, 2010

The Astoria Downtown Historic District Association (ADHDA) recently recognized JC Penney for improvements made to the front and rear of their building. Design is one of the four areas of focus for the Oregon Main Street Program, and improvements that respect the historic integrity of buildings are encouraged. ADHDA holds these improvements up as exemplary in that regard.

According to ADHDA Board Member Rose Marie Paavola, “JC Penney has been working on restoring their building so it will look nice for our upcoming Bicentennial. The painting and inside work make the building look almost new. Other building owners are restoring their buildings too; one starts and then it’s contagious!” Paavola adds, “But why wait for the Bicentennial? All building owners and store owners should be thinking about the upcoming holiday season.”

The JC Penney store in downtown Astoria is located in the eastern end of the downtown core between Commercial and Duane Streets, with access from both streets. Improvements to the back façade include window replacement, sill repair and installation of recessed blocks in the four window openings that were previously covered. Additional improvements include plaster repair and painting on both the front and the rear of the building.

These improvements required additional effort and patience on the retailers’ part since the building is within the Downtown National Register Historic District. The improvements on the Duane Street façade, for example, required a Certificate of Appropriateness from the Historic Landmarks Commission.
The building occupied by JC Penney was designed by John Wickes, a celebrated architect of many Astoria buildings and homes. It was originally constructed as a furniture and department store in 1923. JC Penney moved into the building in 1928 and has occupied it continuously. It is thought to be the longest continuous location of a store within the JC Penney Company.

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