Downtown Santa Ana Historic Districts
||It has been suggested that Downtown National Register District be merged into this article. (Discuss) Proposed since August 2010.|
Downtown Santa Ana Historic Districts (North, Government/Institutional and South, Retail)
Old Orange County Courthouse
|Location:||Roughly bounded by Civic Center Dr., First, Ross, and Spurgeon Sts., Santa Ana, California|
|Area:||24.5 acres (9.9 ha)|
|Architectural style:||Late 19th and 20th Century Revivals, Moderne, Mission/Spanish Revival|
|Governing body:||Local, U.S. Postal Service|
|Added to NRHP:||December 19, 1984|
The Downtown Santa Ana Historic Districts is a combination of local historic districts that was listed as one in the National Register of Historic Places in 1984. It is a 24.5-acre (9.9 ha) area. Also known as Historic Downtown District in Santa Ana is roughly bounded by Ross to French streets and First to Civic Center streets.
- Santa Ana City Hall (Civic Center Plaza)
- Santa Ana Civic Center Plaza (Ross, Civic Center, Santa Ana Blvd, Flower)
- Santa Ana Public Library (Civic Center Dr. & Ross)
- Old Orange County Courthouse (Civic Center, Broadway, Sycamore, Santa Ana Blvd.)
- Orange County Courthouse (Civic Center Plaza)
- Orange County Public Law Library (Civic Center Plaza)
- Ronald Reagan Federal Building and United States Courthouse (4th & Broadway)
- Fourth District Court of Appeals (Civic Center Plaza on the corner of Santa Ana Blvd & Ross)
- Office of the District Attorney (Near the corner of Ross & Civic Center)
- Mexican Consulate (Near Civic Center & Broadway intersection)
- Santa Ana Transit Terminal - OCTA (Santa Ana Blvd & Ross)
At one point in time, Downtown Santa Ana was the place to be in Orange County. The County's first theater, Walker's Theater, was built in 1909 on Main & Second streets adjacent to the old City Hall. Today, the Main Street Studio Lofts now stand where the county's first movie house used to.
The Historic District in Downtown Santa Ana is characterized by a number of buildings in the Art Deco style as well as three old movie houses (The West End, Fox West Coast, and the Yost). Orange County's first Courthouse is also located here on Civic Center and Broadway streets. It is now a museum. The Dr. Willella Howe-Waffle House and Medical Museum is also located in this district and it is now home to the Santa Ana Historical Preservation Society.
The Historical Downtown can be thought of as being characterized by a northern Institutional section and a southern retail section. The retail section has two distinct business districts namely the Artist's Village and the Fiesta Marketplace.
In recent years, efforts have been made to revitalize and beautify the Downtown's southern retail section by attracting new businesses and a higher economic class. It for many years has been a place for low income consumption (specifically Fourth street and some surrounding streets) and it unfortunately gained a stigma for some time but now things and attitudes towards it are changing.