California Boulevard (Pasadena)

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California Boulevard is a major East-West road in Pasadena, East Pasadena, and San Marino, California, measuring 5.7 miles in length. Much like Washington Boulevard to the north, California is commonly used to bypass the central neighborhoods of Pasadena, instead passing through more affluent neighborhoods and suburbs.


California Boulevard was a major thoroughfare as early as the 1890s, being the location of Tournament Park, where the Tournament of Roses was originally held (the festivities were moved to Victory Park following the Second World War and the original grounds became part of the Caltech campus). The street was also served by two streetcar lines (East California and West California). At one time, a bridge over the Arroyo Seco was proposed to connect the neighborhood of Annandale with the rest of the city by streetcar, but the bridge was never built. Instead, a high bridge was built on La Loma Road, one block south.


California Boulevard begins abruptly at the Arroyo Seco as a small residential street. At Pasadena Avenue, it serves as the current terminus for State Route 710. Between the highway and Marengo Avenue, the road passes through a heavy commercial/industrial zone, including Huntington Memorial Hospital, before returning to a residential street (mostly apartment buildings). Between Wilson and Hill Avenues, the road passes through the campus of the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and between Allen Avenue and San Gabriel Boulevard, the street runs through the northernmost edge of the city of San Marino. Between San Gabriel Boulevard and Michillinda Avenue, the road passes through East Pasadena. Past Michillinda, the road continues as Sunset Boulevard in Arcadia.