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PS MODCOM HISTORY

1999

Palm Springs Modern Committee (PS ModCom) holds its first meeting at Courtney Newman’s furnishings store, ModernWay, where the group continutes to meet for many years. The new non-profit organization is initially founded to advocate for saving the 1955 Albert Frey-designed Fire Station #1 from demolition for a parking garage. Victorious. City Council designates property as Class One Historic Site. Peter Moruzzi becomes the organization’s first president.

2000

Palm Springs Modernism Show is inaugurated. PS ModCom designs/staffs first of many subsequent booths for show.

2000

Inauguration of annual Modern Home Tours.

2000

CEQA attorney in support of future advocacy efforts retained.

2001

First edition of Map of Modern Palm Springs produced. Becomes bestseller at Visitors Center.

2001

Website goes online.

2001

$50,000 secured from developer of Ralph’s Shopping Center at Sunrise and Ramon to pay for historic resources survey of Palm Springs.

2002

Became 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in order to raise funds for advocacy, education, and outreach purposes.

2002

Inaugurated annual Modern Preservation Awards.

2003

Annual February education exhibit inaugurated at Palm Springs Public Library.

2004

“Palm Springs Visions: A Community Forum” that addresses growth and preservation issues organized by PS ModCom.

2006

Desert Holiday, DVD documentary with narrated history of Coachella Valley utilizing vintage postcards, produced by founder Peter Moruzzi for sale by PS ModCom.

2007

Honored by California State Historic Resources Commission with special award

2007

Lifetime Achievement Award added to annual Preservation Awards Luncheon.

2007

Sponsorship of first of numerous stars to be placed on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars. Recipients include E. Stewart Williams, Julius Shulman, Donald Wexler, William Krisel, Hugh Kaptur and Richard Neutra.

2009

Educational multi-media kiosk on Palm Springs Modern presented to Palm Springs Visitors Center.

2010

Redesigned and greatly enhanced website goes online.

2012

Launched PS Modern Tour App, in partnership with Palm Springs Life Magazine.

2013

Received AIA Institute Honors for Collaborative Achievement Award at National Convention, Denver

2013

Became one of 100 Founders of the Architecture & Design Center, Edwards Harris Pavilion, a new outpost of the Palm Springs Art Museum.

2013

Initiated Annual Scholarship Program for PSUSD graduating students.

2014

Created first school program at St. Theresa School in Palm Springs, providing educational curriculum about modernism and preservation with an annual display of architectural models and art during Modernism Week.

2014

Palm Springs Airport ticketing area threatened by insensitive alterations that would have destroyed its open, breezy design. City Council rejects alterations.

2014

Spa Hotel and Bathhouse demolished during discussions with tribe about integrating the structure into a new hotel.

2015

William F. Cody-designed Tramway Shell Station. Preservation effort begins and is ongoing.

2016

Robinson’s Department Store by architects Pereira & Luckman is restored. PS ModCom was strong supporter of preservation and adaptive reuse.

2016

PS ModCom’s attorney saves Tahquitz Plaza from demolition at 11th hour. Property designated Class One Site by City Council. Developer changes heart and restores Tahquitz Plaza following preservation standards.

2017

We increase scholarships to $2,500 for four graduating high school seniors interested in architecture and/or design.

2018

PS ModCom works with the City in physically stabilizing the Town & Country Center and securing it from vandalism by owner Grit Development.

The spectacular Walker Guest House Replica is relocated and reconstructed in Palm Springs by PS ModCom on loan from the Sarasota Architectural Foundation (SAF) in Florida.

2019

PS ModCom celebrates its 20th anniversary.

Paul Rudolph symposium produced in conjunction with Walker Guest House Replica arrival in Palm Springs.

California Preservation Foundation conference recognizes PS ModCom for its multi-year education effort with 4th - 6th grade students at St. Theresa's Catholic School.

Focus continues to be on Modern architecture in general and Coachella Valley modern buildings in particular.

Founding board member Courtney Newman takes over from Chris Menrad as president.

© PS MODCOM 2023