Foothill Shopping Center, Azusa, CA

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J-Man
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Foothill Shopping Center, Azusa, CA

Post by J-Man » 24 Oct 2007 23:34

I've always wondered about this shopping center (located on the corner of Citrus and Alosta), which looks to me like it hasn't been radically modified since it was built (which I always suspected to be in the 50s.) I was at Borders last night browsing through a book on Azusa, and there was a picture of the center's opening in 1956. The photo shows a small suburban Penney's store (now Ross) as well as an Anita dress shop, Woolworths, Sav-On (now CVS) and a big Mayfair sign (the picture was taken from the north side of the center so you can't actually see the store, which was on the east side of the "L" shaped center.) The Mayfair became Alpha Beta, then Ralphs, and is now a 99 Cents Only store.

Last time I was there, I noticed that you could still see the names of the former stores embedded in the walkway in front of each store (a true 50s touch.) But there were signs that the place was being remodeled, and I just read that a Fresh and Easy is going in-- I think between the 99 Cents store and CVS.

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runchadrun
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Post by runchadrun » 25 Oct 2007 12:14

A few notes from the Times archive:

The center was developed by Foothill Citrus Co. and the architect was Milton Anderson. In additon to the stores J-Man mentions there was a Gallen Kamp Shoes.

First Western Bank received approval to open a branch at the shopping center in 1956. The building was shared with Western Auto and cost $300,000 to build. In looking at the grainy picture and the satellite view, my guess is that it's currently the building with the Kragen that J-Man thinks is becoming a Fresh and Easy. (First Western was a forerunner of United California Bank, later First Interstate, now swallowed up by Wells Fargo.)

The center was annexed by the city of Azusa in 1961. According to the short note in the Times, it was 40 acres and the annexation was made possible by the city's purchase of the Azusa Agricultural Water Company, which owned the Foothill Citrus Co.

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Post by Jeff » 27 Oct 2007 19:33

What else was in this center?

I wonder because I see foundations in the back of the center. I don't remember when they were torn down.

Also, was this ever a mall? I am thinking so just based on Penney's and the fact that what could have been the mall was torn down partially in the 80's to build the Edwards Theater. It does look very mall-ish.

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Post by Jeff » 27 Oct 2007 19:37

Gasp! The center is getting a major remodel:

http://clause.apu.edu/september14/azusa/article1.html

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RandallFlagg
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Post by RandallFlagg » 28 Oct 2007 02:47

I don't remember the center ever being enclosed. Back in the late sixties J.C.Penneys was a small department store. We shopped there mainly for clothes and cub scout stuff. The stores in the area were in strip malls along busy streets. I remember the store in Fontana [se corner of Foothill Blvd. and Sierra Ave], Ontario [Euclid Ave. east side between D and G street], and the Azusa store on Foothill or is it Alosta? I always get that screwed up thanks to Glendora. I do remember the store in Ontario had a basement and white tile stairs in the middle of the store. You could park on Euclid and enter the front or they shared a large rear parking lot with McMann's Furniture and other small stores and enter through the back.

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Post by Jeff » 28 Oct 2007 21:15

I remember the small JCPenney locations in Monterey Park and Montebello, both closed (along with the Alhambra location) in 1985 when they opened the new Montebello Town Center location, with the Montebello and Monterey Park locations "moving" to the new mall.

The Monterey Park store had one main level and a basement with Kids clothing and home stuff down there. The Montebello was a small one level, that later became a Service Merchandise and then a Marshall's.

But I was wondering since the center looked like it could have had rear store enteraces if when they built the theatre, if they tore down stores there that faced the others, in a small open air mall areal. that's what look like could have happened.

luckysaver
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Re: Foothill Shopping Center, Azusa, CA

Post by luckysaver » 22 Jun 2008 13:21

Correct me if I'm wrong - I believe Azusa Pacific University owns the shopping center today.

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J-Man
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Re: Foothill Shopping Center, Azusa, CA

Post by J-Man » 29 Jun 2008 23:35

I drove by today and noticed that all of the in-line stores between CVS and the 99 Cents Only (formerly Alpha Beta) store had been torn down. I remember a few months ago that there were signs indicating a new Fresh & Easy was going in one or more of those buildings, but I guess I misunderstood and they're going to be a new build (assuming it's still going forward as planned.)

On a semi-related note, I was in the Fresh & Easy in Arcadia today and it was more crowded than I've ever seen it. I hope that's a good sign.

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Re: Foothill Shopping Center, Azusa, CA

Post by WhenenRome » 31 Aug 2008 10:01

luckysaver wrote:Correct me if I'm wrong - I believe Azusa Pacific University owns the shopping center today.
The smaller shopping center on the opposite side of Citrus Avenue is the one owned by Azusa Pacific University. The Foothill Center (soon to be renamed "Citrus Crossing") is owned by its developer.

To J-Man, it certainly appears that the Fresh & Easy store is moving forward as planned. The fascia being constructed definitely resembles an F&E signature design, with an angular peak on the left side of the storefront.

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Re: Foothill Shopping Center, Azusa, CA

Post by Jeff » 31 Aug 2008 23:47

I actually went to this center two weeks ago.

The Fresh and Easy is a new build. The stores between Ross and Sav-on were cut in half and are smaller, making parking between the shops and the theatre (which is getting a good remodel - it vaguely looks like an Edwards now).

The center is really looking good now.

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