Decorated Cable Cars Of 1892 & Other Notable 4th Of July Anniversaries From Early Los Angeles Transit History

The upcoming holiday prompted us to share this rarely-seen image of a Los Angeles cable car decked out for the 4th of July, 1892. When you think about it, the photograph was taken nearly midway between the founding of the…

Rail Rapid Transit Now!: Early Freeways, “Bus Rapid Transit” & The Competing Transportation Plans Of 1948

One hundred years ago, the first traffic study of Los Angeles was published. Bion J. Arnold explained “The Traffic Problem Of Los Angeles” in the November 4, 1911 issue of The California Outlook: A Progressive Weekly. In subsequent years, congestion…

L.A. Transit Paintjobs Of The Past: King Tut, Disneyland & Other Notable Livery

If you’ve been dipping into our extensive Flickr online photo collection or reading about it elsewhere, you may know that it now holds well over 7,500 images. As we add to this growing repository of the past, present and future of Southern California transit…

Experience The Future Of History & Culture in Los Angeles: Our New Leadership Role In “LA As Subject”

This morning, LA as Subject members met at the Los Angeles City Archives for the organization’s bi-monthly Archives Forum meeting. Following ten days of voting online, other members cast ballots in person to choose four new Executive Committee members and…

Announcing The Metro Library Twitter Daily, The Easiest Way To Keep Up With The Transportation Conversation — Without Joining Twitter!

Being immersed in a wealth of data, information and knowledge every day keeps you on your toes — and on the verge of being completely overwhelmed. That’s why we’ve created a daily Twitter newspaper to do the work for you.…

Creating Pacific Coast Highway And Other Landmark Projects From 1924: Metro Library’s New Collection Of Historic California Highway Commission Documents

We have embarked on an exciting new project this year, one that is already yielding fascinating insights into local transportation history. Metro’s Transportation Library & Archive has entered into an arrangement with Occidental College Library to digitize their complete collection of California…

“Come Ride With Us” On The Rolling Submarines Of Los Angeles: SCRTD’s 1974 “Street Fleet” Beach Bus Service

  (Promotional video for RTD’s “Street Fleet” bus service, 1974) Memorial Day has come and gone, and while the weather this week doesn’t make it feel like Summer, June means schools are closing and Angelenos will soon begin flocking to Southland…

Planning Tools: The Census, New Energy & Our Climate Future

Two recent titles from the American Planning Association warrant mention. Planners And The Census: Census 2010, ACS, Factfinder, And Understanding Growth from the American Planning Association’s Planning Advisory Service provides insight into the increasingly popular American Community Survey and how planners can use statistics…

Approaching Transportation Research: Our Step-By-Step Guide To Getting Started & Up-To-The-Minute Bibliographies For Hot Transportation Topics

Whether you need answers fast or you are not familiar with a subject or its terminology, a timely and effective quest for knowledge can be challenging.  Transit and transportation research can be especially daunting. These fields of study are interdisciplinary…

Before “Subway To The Sea,” There Was “Streetcar In The Sea”: Creating Artificial Reefs Off The Los Angeles Coast In 1959

The recent photo essays in the New York Times and Fast Company featuring stunning photos of NY MTA subway cars being dumped into the sea inspired us to tell our own similar story from half a century ago. The July,…

50 Years Ago This Week: Planning The El Monte – Century City Backbone Route (Complete With Nuclear Fallout Shelters, Large-Capacity Helicopters And A Beverly Hills Subway)

In May of 1961, the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority unveiled its plans for the Backbone Route — the 22.7-mile-long first leg of yet another rapid transit proposal for Los Angeles. After Wilshire Corridor stakeholders squelched the idea for a Los Angeles monorail system…