1904: Sunset Boulevard opens to traffic, including Pacific Electric Railway streetcars.
At the time, the Los Angeles Herald reported: “Los Angeles and Hollywood united yesterday in celebration of the opening of Sunset boulevard and its adjacent systems. The splendid highway was inspected by nearly 2,000 Los Angeles people, who proceeded to Hollywood in vehicles of every sort, ranging in design from a high-geared automobile to a goat cart…Mayor M.P. Snyder of Los Angeles . . . [said:] “Hollywood . . . is now a place to delight the eyes of visitors and a place where the sunshine is brighter, the flowers fairer and the fruit better than in almost any other part in the state.”
1958: The Disneyland Television program titled “Magic Highway USA” airs, examining the past, present and future of transportation.
This rarely-seen film demonstrated “futuristic” transportation concepts to Americans just being introduced to the Interstate Road System.
Indeed, the segment treating the future of American transportation intones that “Speed, safety and comfort will be the keynotes of tomorrow’s highway system.”
Among the features that future travellers were told to expect included multi-colored travel lanes, radiant heat to clear rain and snow, radar screen windshields for fog, giant road builders, atomic reactors for mountain tunneling and highway escalators.
Personal rapid transit to deliver different members of the family to their desired destinations: “On entering the city the family separates; father to his office, mother and son to the shopping center,” as the automated vehicle splits in two on the screen.
The film was written and produced by Ward Kimball, who was largely responsible for the program’s early Tomorrowland-themed episodes.
It was also a precursor for many of the ideas illustrated in a presentation that Walt Disney made in 1966 outlining plans for Disney World, and his vision for EPCOT in particular.
1974: Mrs. Kay Conley is the three millionth rider on the Southern California Rapid Transit District system since the inauguration of the $0.25 flat fare on April 1.