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Old 03-16-2019, 04:14 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
2,784 posts, read 3,505,643 times
Reputation: 1958

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrolman View Post
The Pacific Electric was losing money hand over fist. Ridership was plummeting. Bankruptcy was right around the corner.
I wasn't around to experience it, but it's one thing to look at a map showing tracks all over and another to actually know what service was like. Large parts of the route were single tracked with infrequent service. Routes with frequent service were slow and would be ridiculously slow now as very little of it was grade separated and our region has added millions of people, along with lots of new streets and traffic lights.
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Old 03-16-2019, 08:57 PM
 
227 posts, read 74,459 times
Reputation: 281
The movie "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" was loosely based on the old electric trains
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Old 03-16-2019, 09:52 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
55 posts, read 15,507 times
Reputation: 119
My Grandfather would tell me stories of riding from San Bernardino to Santa Monica for only 1.25. A trip to Riverside was 15 cents.


Til this day you can still see old train tracks laid down. Much of the San Bernardino Line path today has been converted into a very long and scenic bike trail connecting dozens of foothill cities.
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Old 03-17-2019, 02:34 PM
 
Location: Point Loma, San Diego, CA
1,118 posts, read 1,004,990 times
Reputation: 932
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astral_Weeks View Post
I absolutely agree with you.

One other "urban myth" is the notion that Los Angeles is a "sprawling" city due to the automobile. The reality is that those 1,000 miles of railway were the beginnings of So. Calif.'s dispersed settlement pattern.
Another urban myth I just dispelled on another thread is that the original building height limits were based on earthquake fears. Not a shred of evidence to support that.

If you're interested in the original urban rail (%25 more track than NYC has now), check out the early origins of the modern Metro LA. They had BIG plans for another massive system. Valley residents insisted on an underground subway as to not disturb them, which is ironic because it's the one part of the city that doesn't really warrant heavy rail.
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Old 03-17-2019, 02:48 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
75,906 posts, read 67,784,112 times
Reputation: 73041
Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrolman View Post
Urban Myth.
Nope, proven in court. The auto and petrol industries got sued for wrecking public transit systems in cities across the country, and were required to pay fine, that amounted to a mere slap on the wrist. They were not required to rebuild the systems. Taxpayers had to raise money to replace the lost systems, decades later. There are many references to this on the internet. It's part of transit history. PBS used to show a documentary about it annually. Knowing history is so important!

Read it and weep:

The Great Transportation Conspiracy
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Old 03-17-2019, 05:37 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
2,852 posts, read 1,522,667 times
Reputation: 3268
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
Nope, proven in court. The auto and petrol industries got sued for wrecking public transit systems in cities across the country, and were required to pay fine, that amounted to a mere slap on the wrist. They were not required to rebuild the systems. Taxpayers had to raise money to replace the lost systems, decades later. There are many references to this on the internet. It's part of transit history. PBS used to show a documentary about it annually. Knowing history is so important!

Read it and weep:

The Great Transportation Conspiracy

Ruth: That ain't the truth!

If you read the link I provided earlier in the thread you can understand why:

It is true that in 1949, the Federal District Court of Southern California found the corporate investors of National City Lines guilty of "conspiring to monopolize sales of buses and supplies" in violation of antitrust laws.

These companies were trying to cash in as much as possible on rising demand for their products. But there's not much evidence to suggest that they actually plotted to destroy electric rail lines.

For one thing, National City Lines bought (and soon discarded) the Yellow Cars of the Los Angeles Railway, but never the famous Red Cars of the Pacific Electric system. Those were officially taken out of operation in 1961, by none other than the Metropolitan Transit Authority (an ancestor of Metro).

Ridership was declining for YEARS before National City Lines came into the picture

By the time that National City Lines entered the picture, the dismantling of the streetcar system was well underway. I am no apologist for General Motors but National City Lines was merely scheming to profit from a trend already in motion.

Again, I am not excusing GM or National City Lines for their actions but the "truth" is simply more complicated and nuanced than what the conspiracy theorists want to believe.
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Old 03-17-2019, 07:27 PM
 
5,838 posts, read 6,060,743 times
Reputation: 2608
Quote:
Originally Posted by sean1the1 View Post
At it's peak it had 1000 miles of track with 2,100 trains operating daily. It literally covered everywhere in the 1920s. Of course as the freeway system was built it equaled straight death to the "obsolete" electric railway. I'm amazed that they were so ahead of the times a shame we ended up going backwards while still growing rapidly. I mean check out these lines from 1911 covered everywhere in LA CSA. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacifi...(Red_Cars).svg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacific_Electric https://lbpost.com/longbeachize/long...carried-lb-la/
I think the reason you never hear of it is because it is under utilized by the people that live there. The HK, NYC, The L in Chicago, London Underground are famous because of the heavy traffic they get.

Overcrowding even to the point where tensions boil over


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hV38-I223ec

I doubt anything like this ever happens on LA trains.
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Old 03-17-2019, 08:14 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
2,852 posts, read 1,522,667 times
Reputation: 3268
Quote:
Originally Posted by Losfrisco View Post
Another urban myth I just dispelled on another thread is that the original building height limits were based on earthquake fears. Not a shred of evidence to support that..

Yep, definitely. I wonder which thread that was...?
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Old 03-17-2019, 08:48 PM
 
Location: Retired in Malibu/La Quinta/Flagstaff
1,290 posts, read 1,281,989 times
Reputation: 4234
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
Nope, proven in court. The auto and petrol industries got sued for wrecking public transit systems in cities across the country, and were required to pay fine, that amounted to a mere slap on the wrist. They were not required to rebuild the systems. Taxpayers had to raise money to replace the lost systems, decades later. There are many references to this on the internet. It's part of transit history. PBS used to show a documentary about it annually. Knowing history is so important!

Read it and weep:

The Great Transportation Conspiracy
I read it and I'm not weeping. Astral_Weeks spelled it out. Urban myth, plain and simple.
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Old 03-17-2019, 09:02 PM
 
Location: San Francisco/East Bay and Los Angeles, formerly DC and Boston
2,053 posts, read 3,344,012 times
Reputation: 1656
The Pacific Electric was a private enterprise whose objective was to sell suburban real estate, not turn a profit on its own. Think about it, do you really think San Bernardino and Pomona had the density back then to support unsubsidized transit?

It was also used to bring and sell electricity to those suburbs. In Atlanta, the streetcar system was actually owned by the power company for the latter reason.

Sad as it was to see them go, these streetcar systems were never going to be viable financially, especially in the 50s when car traffic was much, much lighter.
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