Monday, December 10, 2007
Palm Trees and Median Strip
Highland Avenue between Melrose Avenue and Wilshire Boulevard – map
Anyone who’s spent more than thirty seconds in Los Angeles has seen a stretch of palm trees, single-rowed, spaced evenly, along one of our city streets. What makes this collection of palms different is they go on for friggen ever.
Running through what is mostly Hancock Park, these Queen and Washingtonia Robusta Palms stretch a whole mile and a half. They date back to the late 1920s when Highland Avenue residents themselves coughed up the dough for both the trees and the median as a beautification project (I’m sure they could afford it, too).
The afternoon I made it there, I began on foot at the southern end of the stretch, fully intending to walk the whole three-mile round trip. I made it a few blocks before I realized it wasn’t making for the most thrilling afternoon. But I drove the rest of the way, and take my word for it: you seen a couple blocks of HCM No. 94, you seen ‘em all.
Oh, one thing about Highland Avenue. Over on KPCC’s Street Stories site, Kitty Felde reports Highland Avenue dates back to the turn of the last century. The new avenue ran through land owned by Mary Moll, who, in exchange for allowing the road to run through her property, required the city to name the street after her recently deceased friend, Mrs Highland Price.
Really? I mean, Highland’s a person’s name? (Or was.)
Now, the good news is this is the last tree monument until May, which is fine by me.
Up next: Rindge House