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Fern Glen house near La Jolla High School is designated historic

San Diego Historical Resources Board members designated the Webb Van Horn Rose/Charles Salyers House in La Jolla as historic.
San Diego Historical Resources Board members designated the Webb Van Horn Rose/Charles Salyers House at 736 Fern Glen in La Jolla as historic.
(Courtesy)

A hidden house across from La Jolla High School’s tennis courts was designated historic by the San Diego Historical Resources Board on April 22. The house was listed on the board meeting’s consent agenda and was approved without discussion.

Board members designated the Webb Van Horn Rose/Charles Salyers House at 736 Fern Glen as a historical resource under HRB Criteria C and D.

Criterion C indicates that a property “embodies distinctive characteristics of a style, type, period or method of construction or is a valuable example of the use of natural materials or craftsmanship.”

Criterion D indicates that a property is “representative of a notable work of a master builder, designer, architect, engineer, landscape architect, interior designer, artist or craftsman.”

The Fern Glen property was built in 1932 in the Tudor Revival style and has been minimally modified since, according to a report given to the HRB.

According to the report, the house “embodies the distinctive characteristics through the retention of character-defining features of Tudor Revival and retains a good level of architectural integrity from its period of significance.”

The house also is one of the earliest known designs of master architect Charles Salyers and is the only known example of his work in the Tudor Revival style, according to the staff report. The house “retains excellent integrity and continues to reflect elements of Salyers’ original design, intent and aesthetic,” the report stated.

Salyers, whose earliest works were mostly in Spanish Eclectic, began working in the Streamline Moderne style in the 1930s, including in his residential designs.

“Recognized in large part for his innovative approach to design, he helped shape the unique residential character of midcentury San Diego,” according to the report.

Seven of Salyers’ San Diego works were previously designated as historical resources by the HRB.

According to the city, benefits of historic designation include the availability of the Mills Act program for reduced property tax for owners to maintain, restore and rehabilitate historic properties; use of the more flexible Historical Building Code; flexibility in other regulatory requirements; use of the historical conditional use permit, which allows flexibility of use; and other programs that vary depending on the site conditions and the owner’s objectives.

Homeowner Alex Quick thanked HRB staff for the designation. “We look forward to taking care of this historic resource,” Quick said.

The San Diego Historical Resources Board next meets at 1 p.m. Thursday, May 27, online. It is not known whether a La Jolla property will be reviewed. To learn more, visit sandiego.gov/development-services and click on “Public hearings, meetings and notices.” ◆