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Streetcar home

Streetcar home

Dec. 10, 1950: Mr. and Mrs. Louis A. Smith gardening in front of their Sun Valley streetcar home. Housing quarters are made up of retired cars that formerly operated on the Watts line. They’re all-electric and air-conditioned.

This image was published in a Dec. 10, 1950, edition of the Los Angeles Times not kept on microfilm. No further information is available about the Smith’s home. I did find one reference posted in 2009 entitled “Street Car Smith” at the website.  According to the post, Mr. Smith “strung [eight cars] together with short corridors between each car, using one as a kitchen, one as a family room, several as bedrooms etc.”


  1. March 2, 2012, 6:59 am

    Great Idea, if only I could get one of those Metro links that keep crashing, and put it to some good use. There's plenty of seniors who need low income housing, a place to eat some healthy cooking!

  2. March 2, 2012, 10:52 am

    Curious…if the edition was not microfilmed, why not wander over to 5th & Grand and see what the LAPL has on film/fiche? Take a noontime walk for the team, Scott. 🙂

    By: zarchasmpgmr
  3. March 2, 2012, 12:22 pm

    Recycling isn't something new!

    By: Brenda
  4. March 2, 2012, 11:43 pm

    Detroit took down the cheap to operate and maintain electric street cars with the Detroit diesel bus.

    By: Stanley
  5. March 3, 2012, 8:09 am

    They are still in service as a home today today. They have been repainted from their Pacific Electric red to silver.

    In 1970 there was an additional steel car half buried in the hilside as the start of a bomb shelter. There was also a wooden car in use as a storage shed.

    By: Africansteam
  6. July 16, 2015, 6:06 pm

    We have three extant streetcar bodied buildings here in San Diego that I know about. Two are used as houses and one is a taco shop; the 1st is on busy Mission Blvd. in North Mission Beach, the 2nd a canyon home south of Redwood Street at 30th in North Park, the 3rd a restaurant in Logan Heights/Barrio Logan called El Carrito.

    By: rgsfield

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