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ANAHEIM The Spanish bungalow on Dickel Street evokes a time when Anaheim families gathered on their front porches to
pass the time.
For Jeff Smith, it was one of the unique features that attracted him to his 1925 Spanish Eclectic home in Anaheim.  Smith lives
in the Historic Palm District, the third historic district in the city.”People lived differently then … they tended to live outdoors more. My favorite place to be is the front porch, because of that,
I now know more of my neighbors,” Smith said.
Homeowner Jeff Smith stands in front of his
home in Anaheim’s new Palm District.
In 2005, Smith and his neighbors decided that their neighborhood deserved to be a historic district.  They surveyed the homes and presented their findings to the Central District Neighborhood Council, the Historic Preservation Committee, and eventually to City Council which approved the
designation last year.
The district, bound by North Street, Harbor Boulevard, La Palma Avenue and the railroad tracks, is characterized by Spanish Revival and English- and French-style homes.There was a huge building boom after World War I, said Cynthia Ward, president of the Anaheim Historical Society:  “The homes reflect the time,
soldiers had been in Europe and brought romantic notions with them.  It was a wonderful time for architecture.

The Palm District, which is walking distance from Pearson Park, has 516 structures, including 181 “contributors” or historic homes. It was named after Palm Street, Harbor Boulevard’s former name, which is lined with palm trees.

Homes in the area cost an average of $600,000, said Meghan Shigo, an Orange County Realtor who specializes in historic homes.

Although there is no automatic increase in value when an area becomes a historic district, the designation typically does add value to a home and draws attention to the area, especially afterward, Shigo said.

She helped residents with the process by providing chains of titles to trace the homes’ histories.

Mayor Curt Pringle will present the “Class of 2006” historic homes, including those in the Palm District, with a bronze plaque distinguishing them as a historic home, at a council meeting this summer.