In continuation of the previous post, the view above shows part of the University Park business district along Vermont Avenue, this time looking north from 24th Street. Though there is little indication of it today, the intersection was once particularly privileged for commercial development thanks to the crossing of two streetcar lines. At the time, the Los Angeles Railway’s V line traveled between East Hollywood and Vernon via Vermont and Vernon Avenues; the A line linked West Adams with Downtown, traveling briefly along 24th Street.
The comparison reflects several of the major changes to Los Angeles’ transportation infrastructure that took place during the mid-20th century. In 1946, the A line became one of the city’s first streetcar routes to be replaced by bus service. The somewhat more fortunate V line survived until 1963, when it was among the last lines to be dismantled. Around the same time, much of the neighborhood immediately to the north was demolished for the Santa Monica Freeway, severing the continuity of its Vermont Avenue business district.
The two-story retail and office building on the left appears to be the only surviving structure in the present view. As seen in the top photograph, its light-colored walls were once ornamented primarily by a painted brick corbel above its second floor. Since then, the building’s rebuilt facade has been plastered over by a collection of pink pilasters, arches, and cornices.
Additional views of Vermont Avenue from the same intersection [USC Digital Library]
1. “Busses take over A line; other changes.” Los Angeles Times. 1 Jul. 1946. A3.
2. “End of streetcars will expand bus service.” Los Angeles Times. 6 Feb. 1963. A1.
3. “Vermont line completed.” Los Angeles Times. 18 Dec. 1923. II10.
Original photo: Dick Whittington Studio. “Intersection, West 23rd Street & South Vermont Avenue, Los Angeles, CA, 1929 – DW-1929-11-23-128~01.” Dick Whittington Photography Collection. USC Digital Library. USC Libraries Special Collections. http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/cdm/ref/collection/p15799coll170/id/33196