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The Endangered 8: 

San José's Most Threatened Architectural and Cultural Landmarks of 2022

Downtown Commercial Historic District


Downtown San José


Built 1870s-1940s





San José’s eclectic early downtown character remains on full display within the National Register-listed Downtown Commercial Historic District, a three-block collection of architectural styles spanning two centuries. But this legacy is increasingly threatened: at least nine historic buildings in or immediately adjacent to the district are currently proposed for demolition or severe, out-of-scale alteration, including the fire-damaged Lawrence Hotel (1893, 71-89 E. San Fernando Street), the Knights of Pythias Hall (1893, 86-90 S. 2nd Street), and the State Meat Market (1915, 142-50 E. Santa Clara Street). While infill development is necessary and welcome, it need not and must not erase or overwhelm downtown’s unique and multi-layered sense of place.

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