History

use for ‘From the Archives’ badge

San Fernando Valley’s big anniversary: Passenger rail service from LA to Van Nuys began 100 years ago

Transit users in the San Fernando Valley probably didn’t notice anything different last Friday when the second century of public transportation in the area got underway. December 16, 1911, was the first day of rail service from Los Angeles to Van Nuys, a development which quickly transformed the Valley from outlying area to commutable [continue reading]

Step aside, pedestrians: Downtown sidewalk removal was pitched in 1940s Los Angeles

The notion of “complete streets” has spread nationwide over the last several years, with policies enacted to accomodate all users: motorists, bicyclists, transit vehicles and their riders and pedestrians. Safe street design for those using roads and sidewalks sounds rather “pedestrian” today, but it wasn’t always that way — including in Los Angeles. In [continue reading]

From the archives: Peaceful cohabitation

Cars and streetcars peacefully sharing limited street space in downtown L.A. in December, 1930. Of course, road rage as an accepted behavior had not yet reached maturity. (Like the people who succumb?) Photo taken looking north at Broadway and Third Street. Remove the vehicles and the street looks surprisingly similar [continue reading]

From the archives: Pass perfect

Thousands of visual reminders of history are stored on the Metro Library Flickr site. Tucked among the historic photos is a shot of a few weekly passes from the 1930s, showing that many Los Angeles Railway tickets were small works of art. Some simply reminded riders not to forget Mother’s Day. [continue reading]

From the archives: rapid reality

Plucked from the fabulous Metro Library coffers, this cover page from “Rapid Transit – A Reality” shows a proposed ultramodern train on its way to Century City, as well as an ambitious list of other hot spots — all scheduled for completion by July, 1968. The document was part of a 1963 presentation.  Accompanying [continue reading]