In the early 1960s, Lytton Plaza was developed by Bart Lytton across the street from his Lytton Savings and Loan office. It was intended to be a venue for outdoor events such as art and crafts shows. In the late 1960s, Lytton S&L was taken over by Great Western Savings and Loan. Great Western had no interest in the plaza and sold it to a private individual. Loud and unruly happenings occurred at the plaza in the early 1970s. As the plaza was not city property, it was difficult to enforce park rules. In 1975, through eminent domain, Palo Alto acquired the property for $154,000. Park dedication was in 1982.
For a number of years, discussions were held concerning the need to revitalize the plaza. Revitalization finally happened, thanks to a public/private partnership. Ribbon cutting ceremony was in December of 2009.