Stunning Photos Show LA's Roads Before They Were Roads

Illustration for article titled Stunning Photos Show LAs Roads Before They Were Roads

It's no exaggeration that Los Angeles is a great big freeway and a six-lane road jammed in both directions is just a way of life there. If you're from LA, it's hard to believe it when your grandparents reminisce about a time without the Hollywood Freeway or miles and miles of pavement.

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Imagine no longer, thanks to these fantastic photos of the major LA roads before they were all grown up and paved, dug up by KCET. They show what the city looked like before everything was paved and widened and it's pretty fascinating for someone who grew up with things like Wilshire near Ocean in Santa Monica being paved and covered in cars at pretty much any given time. But here, cars are racing down a dirt road. That's awesome!

Illustration for article titled Stunning Photos Show LAs Roads Before They Were Roads
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This is where the Hollywood Freeway would go in the early 1950s, but in 1905, this is what the Cahuenga Pass looked like.

Illustration for article titled Stunning Photos Show LAs Roads Before They Were Roads

Then there's PCH, which is still a fairly thin strip of road firm against the water and the mountains. This photo is from 1905, but this isn't too far from what it looks like following a big rock slide.

Illustration for article titled Stunning Photos Show LAs Roads Before They Were Roads
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This is so far removed from what Hollywood and Sunset looks like today, but in 1904, there were trees and just one car driving by.

Head over to KCET and see more of the great photos.

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DISCUSSION

Mike Kopstain

If you live in LA you can still see some of the earlier roads.

I live in the Hollywood Hills and the cement marker in our street is dated 1924. You can hardly tell the road is that old except for the fact that you can really tell.

Nature has pretty severely contorted the road over time but the cement itself has stood up pretty well. Most of the roads up in the Laurel Canyon area are original.