|Neighborhood of Anaheim|
Downtown Anaheim, also known as Anaheim's Colonial District , is the administrative and historic center of Anaheim, California. Unlike most big city downtowns, Downtown Anaheim is not the economic heart and focal point of this city. The economic heart and focal point of Anaheim and Orange County is the adjacent district just south of Downtown Anaheim--the Anaheim Resort District, which includes the Disneyland Resort and the Anaheim Convention Center. Another prominent district located south east of Downtown Anaheim, and adjacent to the Anaheim Resort, is the Platinum Triangle District.
Buildings and attractions
The Downtown Anaheim Skyline consists of the Bank of America Building and the Wells Fargo Building, which are both over 10 stories high. Other high-rise buildings in Downtown Anaheim include City Hall, West City Hall, the AT & T Building, the Anaheim Memorial Manor, and the Kraemer Building. Anaheim Police Headquarters, Anaheim's Main Central Library, and the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce are also located in Downtown Anaheim. The "Center Street Promenade" consists of shops, restaurants, and Downtown Anaheim's Farmers Market. Other attractions in the Center Street Promenade include Anaheim's "Art in Public Places" Artwalk, and Anaheim's History Walk which was unveiled on June 20, 2007. Also near the Center Street Promenade are The Muzeo, a major museum which opened in the Fall of 2007, and Anaheim Ice (formerly called "Disney Ice"), which is an ice skating rink opened to the public, and it also serves as the practice arena for the NHL team, the Anaheim Ducks. Also located in Anaheim's Colonial District is the oldest museum in Orange County—the Mother Colony House. The city park in Downtown Anaheim is Pearson Park, which was named after Charles Pearson, who served as Mayor of Anaheim when Disneyland opened its doors to the public in 1955. The Pearson Park Amphitheatre, an outdoor theater, is one of the big attractions in Pearson Park.
During the days when Anaheim was a rural community surrounded by orange groves, the geographic center of town was at the intersection of Center Street and Los Angeles Street (now Lincoln Ave and Anaheim Blvd.) and the central business district was built around the center of town. Prior to the Grand Opening of Walt Disney's Theme Park, the old business district consisted of establishments such as the SQR Department Store, Chung King Restaurant, and the Pickwick Hotel. The Grand Opening of Disneyland brought the need for expansion of the Heart of Anaheim. Prior to Walt Disney's death in 1966, The City of Anaheim had plans to construct a forty-story office tower on the other side of Ball Road from Disneyland. Walt Disney knew right off that the skyscraper would be seen from inside Disneyland, thus altering the theme park's "Magic Kingdom Atmosphere." Disney met with the Anaheim city officials and an "Anti Skyline Ordinance" was passed, which stated that no high rise in Anaheim could be built which could be seen from inside Walt Disney's Magical Kingdom. This forced the city to expand its heart outward, instead of upward like most major cities do. Today, the heart of Anaheim consists of three districts: 1) Downtown Anaheim, 2) the Anaheim Resort, and 3) the Platinum Triangle. As the Heart of Anaheim expanded outward more and more during the mid-late 1960s and 1970s, the old downtown district began to deteriorate. By the mid 1970s, Downtown Anaheim had succumbed entirely to urban blight. The city began the process of demolishing the old downtown district and replacing it with a new Downtown District with a miniature skyline development. This process took a little more than fifteen years. The only structures from the old business district which still stand today are the old Carnegie Library Building which is now a museum, and the Kraemer Building (the old Bank of America Building) which was the tallest building in Anaheim prior to Disneyland's opening in 1955. The tallest building in Downtown Anaheim today is West City Hall, which is fourteen stories high. Currently, the tallest building in the entire city is the Anaheim Marriott Hotel which is nineteen stories high and located in the Anaheim Resort District.
New Skyscrapers are planned for the city's A-Town Project which is currently under construction in the Platinum Triangle District. A-Town is supposed to be Orange County's Main "Downtown District" once it is completed. Downtown Anaheim's newest and most recent developments include, The Muzeo, the Promenade @ Anaheim, Carnegie Plaza, and the Harbor Lofts.