San Fernando (Pacific Electric)

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San Fernando
Overview
Type Light rail
System Pacific Electric
Locale Southern California
Termini Downtown Los Angeles
San Fernando, California
Stations 36
Operation
Opened 1911
Closed 1952
Owner Southern Pacific Railroad
Rolling stock PE 5050 Class PCC Cars (last used)
Technical
Line length 27.5 miles
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Electrification Overhead lines
Route map

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San Fernando
San Fernando Mission
Wheeler
Hickson
Plummer
Misslanco
Mission Acres
Pacoima Wash
Midway Park
Wyondotte
Whitsert
SP RR
Rosita
Amherst
Owensmouth
North Sherman Way
Van Nuysold station
Van Nuysterminus after 1938
Whitley
Castro
Cortez
Kester Junction
Tujunga Wash
Garnsey
Sadler
Eucalyptus
North Hollywood
Hoffman
Los Nogales
Los Angeles River
Universal City
Oak Crest
Barham Boulevard
Hollywood Park
Dusky Glen
Cahuenga Pass
US 101 (CA).svg U.S. Route 101
Beverly Hills
Sherman
Highland Avenue
Colegrove
Virgil Avenue
Beverly Hills
Sunset Junction
Glendale-Burbank
US 101 (CA).svg U.S. Route 101
First Street
Toluca Substation and Yard
Hollywood Subway
Harbor Freeway
Subway Terminal

The San Fernando Line was a part of the Pacific Electric Railway system in Los Angeles County, California. It was designed to increase the reach of public transportation from the Downtown Los Angeles and Hollywood into the San Fernando Valley, to support land speculation and development expanding Los Angeles.

Southern San Fernando Valley line[edit]

In 1911–1912, a 20 miles (32 km) interurban electric railway was built from Lankershim (present day North Hollywood), the terminus of an existing line from over the Cahuenga Pass from Hollywood, westward through the entire southern San Fernando Valley property of the Los Angeles Suburban Homes Company syndicate, to promote and support small farm and residential property sales. The syndicate was led by Harry Chandler, with partners General Moses Sherman, Isaac Van Nuys, Hobart Johnstone Whitley, and James Boon Lankershim. The project was initiated in anticipation of the Los Angeles aqueduct opening in 1913, which would bring water for residential and irrigated agricultural development in the syndicate's San Fernando Valley holdings (and citywide). The syndicate is the Los Angeles land speculation group dramatized in the movie Chinatown.

The partner General Moses Sherman directed the Los Angeles Pacific Railroad electric railway line's construction. It ran from Lankershim to the three new towns the syndicate's partner Hobart Johnstone Whitley had planned for the valley, Van Nuys, Marion (present day Reseda), and Owensmouth (present day Canoga Park and West Hills). The tracks ran in the middle of Sherman Way, a broad new 'lavishly landscaped' and paved avenue to the Owensmouth terminus.

1920 Sherman Way in Owensmouth, with Los Angeles Pacific Railroad lines

Northern San Fernando Valley spur[edit]

In addition, the San Fernando Mission Land Company of Charles Maclay and George K. Porter, which owned much of the northern San Fernando Valley (north of Roscoe Boulevard), built an electric railway spur line north from Van Nuys, to connect their undeveloped land and the City of San Fernando with the Pacific Electric system. From San Fernando, the southbound route followed Brand Boulevard, Sepulveda Boulevard, Parthenia Place, and then Van Nuys Boulevard from present day Panorama City to Van Nuys. Remnants of the right of way include center medians on Brand Boulevard, and roundabouts at the Parthenia Place and Sherman Circle/Van Nuys Boulevard turns.



Station Major Connections Date Opened Date Closed City
San Fernando
San Fernando 1902 1938 San Fernando
Van Nuys Owensmouth 1902 1952 Van Nuys
Lankershim Owensmouth 1902 1952 North Hollywood
Highland Avenue San Fernando, Sherman, Venice via Hollywood 1902 1955 Los Angeles
Colegrove San Fernando, Sherman, Venice via Hollywood 1902 1955
Virgil Avenue San Fernando, Sherman, Venice via Hollywood, Western and Franklin Avenue 1902 1955
Sanborn Junction Beverly Hills, San Fernando, Sherman, Venice via Hollywood, Western and Franklin Avenue 1902 1955
Subway Terminal Building Beverly Hills, Echo Park Avenue, Glendale-Burbank, Owensmouth, Redondo Beach via Playa del Rey, Sawtelle, Sherman, Venice Short Line, Venice via Hollywood, Western and Franklin Avenue, Westgate 1925 1961

See also[edit]


References[edit]


First Red Car over to North Hollywood, December 16, 1911