GLAD to see this thing coming all together – wished I lived a LITTLE closer to it!!
RANCHO CUCAMONGA–Work to restore the historic Cucamonga Service Station on Route 66 in Rancho Cucamonga is revving up after a kick off ceremony held on Wednesday.
The Route 66 Inland Empire California nonprofit group now owns the the propery after it was deeded to them by the Lamar sign company earlier this year.
The nonprofit was formed to save the structure and members intend to renovate and rebuild the gas station to what it looked like during its business heyday in the first part of the 20th century.
“It’s really exciting to see the community want to see this gas station, this service station, come back to its golden years,” said Anthony Gonzalez, president of the Route 66 IECA.
A main goal of the organization is to turn the site of the old Richfield service station into a landmark Rancho Cucamonga tourist destination and museum for Route 66 fans and travelers from all over the world.
Known as the Cucamonga Service Station, it opened in the 1910s and provided service up to the 1970s, he said.
Gonzalez said the group plans to bring back the old gravity-fed pumps from the 1930s, and possibly have old signs, oil cans, souvenirs, and literature related to Route 66 for visitors and the community.
The group’s members had been concerned about the fate of the old building in recent years. A larger adjoining garage in the rear had been demolished in the recent past.
Group members say the plan is raise money with the help of the public to restore the gas station and rebuild the demolished garage. Gonzalez said the hope is to have something open by 2015 in time for the 100 year anniversary of the station.
“We open the door to whoever would like to come in and assist us and bring this dream, this historic station, back to its golden years,” Gonzalez said.
Lamar has donated the land to the nonprofit, and the company should get a tax break from the deal, Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez said his group will also look to the state and federal government to assist in available grants.
By Neil Nisperos – Inland Valley Daily Bulletin