December 27: This Date in Los Angeles Transportation History

Muholland opening

Detail of photograph from opening day events for Mulholland High-Way, December 27, 1924 (Courtesy of Huntington Library, click for more information)

1924:  “Mulholland High-Way” is dedicated with much fanfare, including an “air circus, rodeo, parade and dance” along with a program at the Hollywod Bowl.  The road is renamed “Mulholland Drive” in 1939.

1926 Mulholland map

1926 Automobile Club map showing the new “Mulholland High-Way” (Courtesy of CSUN Digital Library, click for more information)

1950:  The first unit of the Hollywood Freeway, a 2.5-mile stretch between Grand Avenue and Silver Lake Boulevard, opens to traffic following dedication ceremonies.

This section of freeway includes the 4-level grade separation structure at the junction point of the Hollywood Freeway and Arroyo Seco Parkway, although only the highest level of the 4-level is in use.

The first unit of completed construction on the freeway was between Highland Avenue and Barham Boulevard in the Cahuenga Pas, opened to traffic in 1940.  Further construction on the project was delayed until additional state highway funds could be procured under the Collier-Burns Highway Act of 1947.

The second unit to be completed;was completed in November, 1948 (outbound) and January, 1949 (inbound), from Barham Boulevard to Vineland Avenue in the San Fernando Valley.

The dedication ceremony was held under the auspices of the Los Angeles Chamber of commerce and was attended by officials of the state of California, the California Highway Commission, members of the staff of the Division of Highways, officials of the City of Los Angeles, the County of Los Angeles and many civic organizations.

The complete story of the opening of this section of the Hollywood Freeway between Grand and Silver Lake can be found in the January-February, 1951 issue of California Highways.