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April Foolin In HP

April 1, 2014
Huntington Park 90255

Huntington Park 90255

Oh the fun of Twitter!  Oh the fun of April Fools’ Day!

Inspired by a hashtag, and the annoyance of successive newcomers to Highland Park trying to be cool by abbreviating our name to “HP,” (Anyone who’s lived here long enough, knows we abbreviate it as “HLP.”) this blogger headed south via the Metro 251 Bus from Figueroa and Avenue 26 to the heart of the real HP: Huntington Park to fool around on April Fool’s Day. The entire day was spent tweeting as HP90255 instead of the usual HLP90042. It was fun. It was funny. But also an opportunity to compare and contrast our Highland Park with their Huntington Park.

Huntington Park is a nice place. Like Highland Park, it was developed as a Streetcar Suburb. (So much a streetcar suburb that the founding fathers named it after Pacific Electric streetcar magnate, Henry E. Huntington just to entice him into building a route to their town.) Like Highland Park, Huntington Park has many pre-1950 single-family homes (with more than one family) and many apartment buildings surrounding central commercial streets. Their Pacific Boulevard, is much like our Figueroa Street, with many of the same department stores and other commercial buildings built in the early 20th Century. 90255 is slightly smaller than 90042, and slightly denser in population with 58,000 residents. The median income for Huntington Park is $39,185, compared to Highland Park’s median income of $45,478. Education-wise, only 4.7% of the residents have 4-year degrees, compared to Highland Park’s 14.3%. Huntington Park is less ethnically diverse than Highland Park. With 95.1% of the population being Latino, it is the largest ethnically Latino city in Los Angeles County. (Latinos make up 72% of Highland Park’s population.)

The two things that are most striking about Huntington Park, compared to Highland Park is how flat the place is. That is, there are no hills! A type of terrain completely foreign to Highland Parkers. The other big difference is how surprisingly clean and well-maintained this city is. Even though Huntington Park is imbedded within an industrial area, it is by-and-large a well-kept town, lacking litter and the something-dumped-on-every-block mentality that plagues Highland Park.  Also, where’s the graffiti? Sure, it exists, but unlike Highland Park where you can’t look at a pole, sign, broken sidewalk, garage, wall, street, curb, dumpster, abandoned couch, utility box, fence, tree, window, door, or mural without seeing someone’s name tagged on it, Huntington Park is practically blank. (True story: Saw a teenager in the park pick up a pen from the floor, walk over to a trash can, and instead of writing on it, he threw it away!) The city parks are all green and free of gophers. The playgrounds are un-vandalized.  There are rose gardens all over the place. There aren’t shopping cart armies roaming the streets scavenging the trash cans, or stray dogs in the streets. Huntington Park is CLEAN.

Sure there were other differences, such as HP lacking the artistic influence that Highland Park has; didn’t see any murals, art galleries or art spaces.  Historic Preservation is not much of a driving force as it is here in Highland Park.  There are no bike lanes or bike routes, and the city has only one sidewalk-installed bike rack (recently placed at their first parklet on Pacific Blvd).  Aside from being under the LAX flight path, there is a quietness to HP that escapes Highland Park with the sound of the frequent LAFD and LAPD sirens combined with airship manhunts that lock-down neighborhoods for hours on end.  Also, Huntington Park is devoid of house flippers. Unlike Highland Park, the city is completely free of horizontal slat fences.

Quality-of-life wise, Huntington Parkers have it made. HP shows us that smaller is better and more effective. No, HP is probably not going to be mentioned in Condé Nast any time soon, but they should be proud, theirs is a fine working-class city without many of the problems that grip comparable City of Los Angeles’ neighborhoods such as our HLP.

 

 

 

 

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Jimmy Crack Corn permalink
    July 14, 2014 11:34 pm

    Download the Official App for Highland Park!!

    We’re blowing up!

    http://www.happeninginhighlandpark.com

  2. October 1, 2014 3:58 am

    Great blog here! Also your website loads up very fast!
    What web host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link
    to your host? I wish my website loaded up as
    fast as yours lol

  3. December 8, 2014 4:20 pm

    Hi guys, nice blog. Check out this excellent high resolution aerial mapping resource:

    http://us.nearmap.com/

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