New York City’s Penn Station may be larger, certainly busier, and Chicago’s version the midway hub for rail traffic spreading out to all parts of the U.S., but our beloved Union Station remains the pride and joy of the bustling sprawling city Angelenos call home. As do I. While the youngest of the big city train stations, it retains a distinct and venerable charm for wayfarers and admirers of fine architecture. As Skift.com put it,
“Opened in May 1939, Los Angeles Union Station is marked by colorful tiles, shady arcades, fountains and towering palms—the epitome of Southern California glamour.”
Indeed. One of the great train stations of the country turns 75 today — wish I’d look this good if/when I reach that age. The Los Angeles Union Station, first built on the 3rd of May 1939, attained that capstone by its unique building design and key central location. Historic Olvera Street, the oldest part of Downtown Los Angeles, a stone’s throw nearby.
In a metropolis filled with new and fashionable edifices crowding out those of its bygone era, this rail destination remains one of the most beautiful structures around. A marriage of Spanish Colonial and Streamline Moderne styles that just never gets old. Check out this splendid slideshow for more looks at what makes that so:
No doubt, it’s the prime reason the grand station has been the shooting location site for so many television programs/movies and feature films through the years. Too many to mention, but those listed below would be some my favorites. Heck, even Fiona Apple filmed a music video in its Fred Harvey room.
For a venue I never tire of, Happy Birthday, Union Station.