Changes coming for the Santora Building?

NEWSONG, a self-described "young vibrant community/church of artists, creative, innovators, entrepreneurs, and community development leaders," has announced that they are in the process of buying the historic Santora Building (1928) in Santa Ana from developer Mike Harrah. This sale, like the sale of Original Mike's and the Santa Ana Masonic Temple is almost certainly an effort to raise funds for Harrah's dream of building a 37-story tower in the middle of historic Downtown Santa Ana. (For most guys, buying a big truck would be enough.)

The Santora is currently part of the "Artists Village" and visiting the beautifully preserved building is like a timewarp back to the 1920s. Shaun King, NEWSONG's Director of Communications, says NEWSONG wants the Santora to be "a regional and even an international hub for the creative community. Our dream is a harmonious community partnership at every level and we want to preserve the historical integrity of this beautiful building."

I'm glad to hear they don't want to screw it up. But do they just mean the exterior, or will they also keep the pristine interior intact? And what is this NEWSONG anyway?

According to an article in OC Weekly, the church targets people it calls “misfits” who they recruit to "change the world."

According to their own press release, NEWSONG's founder, Dave Gibbons, "actively advises artists and executives in New York City, Los Angeles, Seoul, Thailand and Brazil."

In a Facebook post, Gibbons called the Santora “an effective and efficient training space for equipping the next wave of misfit leaders especially artists, business people, and community development specialists. ...[Our leaders] will consider the development of a 300+ seat meeting facility that could accommodate weekend services as well as training during the week.”

I'm not sure how you accomplish that and still preserve the historic interior. Let's keep our fingers crossed.