PASADENA (CBSLA) — The reopened Pasadena Central Library was abruptly closed again Monday due to seismic safety issues.
The library, which is at 285 E. Walnut St., recently resumed in-person services on a part-time basis as Los Angeles County moved into the state’s orange tier of reopening. But a structural assessment of the Central Library showed most of the building is made up of unreinforced masonry that support concrete floors and walls, according to Pasadena city officials.READ MORE: Actor Ricky Schroder Argues With Costco Employee About Mask Confusion
“This is devastating news for us all. Central Library is more than just a building; it’s where generations of families have grown up, and an iconic building that completes our Civic Center as one of Pasadena’s treasures,” City Manager Steve Mermell said in a statement.
Building made up of unreinforced masonry are considered a hazard to life due to their potential to collapse during an earthquake. Pasadena passed an ordinance in 1993 mandating that such buildings should be retrofitted, vacated, or demolished, but there are no records to indicate why Central Library was not identified as an unreinforced masonry building, city officials said.READ MORE: Pursuit And Standoff Ends In Riverside With One Suspect Under Arrest
“First we need to identify what the true deficiencies are in the building and then determine what’s the best way to address them,” Mermell said. “And then of course, there’s the small issue of how to finance the repairs.”
Central Library was designed by Myron Hunt and opened in 1927, and was the city’s first building completed in the historic Civic Center Plan. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has starred in a number of films over the years, including “Arachnophobia,” “Matilda,” “Legally Blonde,” and “Red Dragon.”MORE NEWS: Mandatory Evacuations And Warnings Remain For Palisades Fire; Investigators Continue Search For Suspected Arsonist
City officials say the library’s services and programs will be redirected to other locations. Hastings and La Pintoresca Branch recently reopened with limited hours, and Lamanda Park, Santa Catalina, Linda Vista, and San Rafael branch libraries will open next week. Hill Avenue branch will offer curbside pick-up for materials usually available at Central Library.