The Daily Mirror

Larry Harnisch reflects on Los Angeles history

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Downtown Parking Ban to Ease Traffic

Feb. 29, 1920, No Parking 

To ease congested streets, Los Angeles will ban street parking from Figueroa to Los Angeles streets and 1st to 9th streets. Notice that Spring hasn’t been straightened out yet, another attempt to relieve traffic. 

Feb. 29, 1920, Parking

Feb. 29, 1920, Parking

Feb. 29, 1920, Children 

L.O. Keown  and his wife (God-fearing, churchgoing, hardworking people, The Times says) were too busy to teach three of their eight children to speak English, so the youngsters made up their own language. Now child welfare officials want them to break them of the invented language and have them speak the language that “is their birthright.”

Feb. 29, 1920: If the plan to ban parking in downtown Los Angeles sounds familiar, that’s because it is. Back in 1908, the city did something similar with horse-drawn freight wagons

"At every corner where two streets cross, we used to see an express wagon, as many as four at a junction, standing there most of the day waiting for business to come to them. And at some places were these big furniture vans almost as big as a house," one unidentified councilman said, according to The Times of May 16, 1908.

And The Times manages to drag in a little riff on women shoppers and their long-suffering husbands who can wait in no-parking zones for no more than two minutes. 

I can't say it often enough: Traffic congestion in Los Angeles is at least a 100-year-old problem. If there were easy answers, it would have been resolved decades ago.

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Comments (1)

The description of stevedores lugging pianos and spitting on their hands, and women loaded down with packages from the day's shopping reminded me of a Popeye cartoon, or a Mack Sennett short...


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