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Parking meters arrive in Los Angeles

Parking meters arrive in Los Angeles

The original June 10, 1949, Los Angeles Times caption reported:

Mrs. Barbara Steele and daughter get a warning tag from Officer Harvey Bauler for overtime parking in newly established parking meter area on Lankershim Blvd. in North Hollywood. Beginning Monday, citations will be given.

The accompanying story explained:

The city of Los Angeles will go into the parking meter business for the first time next week when motorists in North Hollywood will get traffic citations if they fail to deposit 5 cents for 60 minutes of parking in the newly metered business section.

Installation of the meters was completed earlier this week and police have been giving motorists warning notices for failure to comply with instructions on the meters. Beginning Monday, they warned, violators will get tickets.

Meanwhile the rest of the 1325 parking meters authorized by the City Council a year ago are being put up in the Van Nuys business area. They are expected to be ready for operation next week….

Los Angeles was not the trendsetter when it came to parking meters. Columnist Steve Harvery, in this 2010 story The city that loves the car was slow to pay for parking, reported:

Los Angeles lays claim to being the birthplace of such phenomena as drive-in church services (Emmanuel Lutheran, North Hollywood, 1949), hang-gliding (Dockweiler State Beach, about 1960) and the Cobb salad (the Brown Derby, 1937).

But the city was no pacesetter in the category of parking meters. Oklahoma City was the first to install the coin confiscators in 1935, and more than 60 other municipalities followed before Los Angeles joined the crowd in 1949. Even Fairbanks, Alaska, beat L.A.

Three times — in 1940, 1942 and 1946 — the City Council rejected the notion, much to the delight of The Times, which scoffed that it would be “just as fair to install turnstiles for sidewalk pedestrians.”…

Today, of course, the parking meters take credit cards. Check out this Sept. 2, 2013, story by Laura J. Nelson: L.A. replaces parking pay stations with state-of-the-art meters.


  1. September 18, 2013, 6:43 am

    Love these archive postings!

    By: kheller66
  2. September 18, 2013, 7:43 am

    I truly enjoy viewing and reading the captions from the Times' old photographs from the past. I am interested if you might have some old memorable photos (with captions) of the Balwin Hills area of Los Angeles circa 1935 to 1953? Thank you in advance and I look forward to viewing more of your archieval treasures.

    By: dmoore

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