Category: L.A. Transit & Transportation History

L.A. Transit & Transportation History

Celebrating Black History Month: How The First African-American Motormen & “Motormanette” Pioneered Social Justice On The Los Angeles Railway

  Los Angeles Railway was not previously known as a socially progressive organization, nor were many other industries or job markets of the early 1940s. The headlines of the Los Angeles Sentinel and the California Eagle from 1942-1944, the leading African…

40 Years Ago Today: San Fernando Earthquake Topples Freeways & Prompts Seismic Retrofitting Plan

Forty years ago today, at 6:01 a.m., an earthquake near San Fernando measuring 6.6 on the Richter scale rolled across Southern California, leaving at least 65 dead and staggering structural damage. While the Northridge Earthquake of 1994 is the largest shaker in recent…

20 Years Ago Today: Groundbreaking For The “Fully Automated” Metro Green Line…But Why Doesn’t It Go To LAX?

Today marks the 20th anniversary of Metro’s Green Line groundbreaking.  The 23-mile long rail line connects Norwalk in the east to El Segundo and Westchester in the west. Speakers at the groundbreaking ceremony held at the future Aviation / LAX…

Reading L.A.: The Los Angeles Times Takes On The Literature Of L.A.’s Architecture & Urbanism Throughout 2011

Los Angeles Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne has announced a new year-long project titled “Reading L.A.” Each month, Hawthorne will be examining Los Angeles through the lens of classic writing in the fields of Southern California architecture and urbanism. He…

Los Angeles’ First Diesel Buses: A Look Back At The Fleet & The 1943 Birth Of Smog

Today, the Los Angeles County Metrpolitan Transportation Authority retired its last diesel bus from its fleet of over 2,200 vehicles. This historic day marks Metro’s claim to be the first major transit agency in the world to operate only alternative-fuel…

Los Angeles In Maps & The Curious Case Of Miss Laura J. Whitlock

One the most exciting new books in a long time has been released this month: Glen Creason’s Los Angeles In Maps (New York: Rizzoli, 2010). Creason is the Map Librarian at Los Angeles Public Library and co-curated the landmark 2008-2009…

Light Rail On Wilshire? Why, That Would Be Illegal!

The recent selection of a route alignment for the Westside Subway Extension, as well as the release of the Wilshire Boulevard Bus Rapid Transit final environmental impact report started us thinking about something we read aways back regarding Wilshire Boulevard.…

The 24-Hour City: 104 Years Of Owl Transit Service In Los Angeles

— By Matt Barrett Los Angeles has been a 24-hour city for much longer that most would imagine, and transit service has played an important role in keeping the city moving overnight for over 100 years. (LAMTA Car 3022 trundles…

Before TAP: The 1963 Vision Of Smart-Card Fare Collection And Rapid Transit For L.A.

The Metro TAP Program has been in the news quite a bit lately, and it reminded us of a long-forgotten piece of Los Angeles transit history. On January 7, 1963, local business and political leaders gathered at the Statler-Hilton Hotel…

50th Anniversary Of L.A.’s "Metro Rail"…Say Whaaat?!: Celebrating The 1960 Birth Of Our Modern Rail System

In July, Metro and Los Angeles celebrated 20 years of Metro Rail. To commemorate the anniversary last month, we took a look back at both the history of service between Los Angeles and Long Beach (1902-1961) as well as the…