City of San Diego
Heritage Architecture & Planning
Echo Pacific Construction
Historic Preservation Consultant
John Griswold/Spectra Company
Built in 1910, Horton Plaza is one of San Diego’s oldest civic landmarks. The half block city park is named for downtown founder Alonzo Horton, who originally intended the plaza to be enjoyed by his guests at the nearby Horton House Hotel. Horton sold the park to the city for $10,000 in 1895. The construction of the U.S. Grant Hotel, which opened in 1910, prompted 180 citizens of San Diego to petition for the redesign of the plaza. Banker, Louis J. Wilde, part-owner of the U.S. Grant and future mayor of San Diego, donated $10,000 for the project. The new design by Irving Gill replaced the original plaza bandstand with a symmetrical layout of grassy quadrants around a decorative fountain. Modeled after the 4th century B.C. Choragic Monument of Lysicrates in Athens, the entablature of the fountain is inscribed with the words: “Broadway Fountain for the People.”
Horton Plaza was designated a historical landmark by the City of San Diego on March 19, 1971. In 1984, a movement was made to redesign the plaza and relocate the fountain, but following protests by preservationists, the city relented and spent $775,000 on restoring the plaza and fountain. In 2008, the fountain was turned off and closed to the public due to deterioration.
In 2014, Spectra Company joined a $17 million project to restore both the historic plaza and fountain as well as create a new urban park on Broadway between Third and Fourth Avenues.
Artifact Restoration & Cataloging • Decorative Metal • Sculptures • Selective Demolition/Abatement • Self-Perform • Stone