Los Angeles

Introduction

Located on Southern California's Pacific coast, Los Angeles has long been known as a city of dreams, a place for the dispossessed or disillusioned to start over and rebuild their lives. In the course of the twentieth century it grew to be the second-largest city in the United States and the hub of a five-county metropolitan area. A tourist magnet known for its sunny climate, beautiful beaches, and entertainment industry, Los Angeles in recent decades has experienced the downside of urban expansion, with its well-publicized air pollution, traffic congestion, and racial and ethnic tensions. Yet the city remains a colorful, thriving metropolis working to overcome the problems of suburban sprawl as it heads into a new century.