Populating Van Nuys with Fine Architecture


  Van Nuys (b. 1911) began as a town, centered around a main street, connected to Los Angeles by streetcar and rail. It built its fire station, library, city hall,  police station, and its churches, schools, shops and post office steps apart. On foot, a person could buy a suit, take out a library book,…

Fox Market, Van Nuys Bl. Circa 1960


It is always fun to come across yet another old photograph of Van Nuys.  (Courtesy of USC Digital Archives) This time it's the Fox Market, a chain, which once had an outpost at 7425 Van Nuys Bl. at the corner of Van Nuys and Valerio, north of Sherman Way . Legendary photographer Julius Schulman shot the Carl…

The Nadir.


It is doubtful that Van Nuys Boulevard, especially that languishing, forgotten, distressed stretch between Victory and Vanowen, has ever been as low, neglected and poor as it is today. No longer do the homeless hide in alleys. They are now set up on the sidewalk, their belongings piled into shopping carts, covered in tarps. At…

Van Nuys Savings and Loan.


In 1954, architect Culver Heaton’s design for the Van Nuys Savings and Loan, with interior murals by artist Millard Sheets, rose at 6569 N. Van Nuys Bl. Along with other financial institutions such as Jefferson Savings, Lincoln Savings, Great Western Bank and Bank of America, they served the local community of hard-working people who opened accounts…

El Color de La Vida.


Before the cold rains struck the San Fernando Valley late Monday afternoon, dark and menacing storm clouds went into formation. Seen from the empty asphalt of an abandoned parking in Panorama City, the view east lived up to its name. The craggy, inky, rock-topped San Gabriels permitted fog to brush their face. Eager to pursue…

Van Nuys Boulevard in Three Eras.


Van Nuys Boulevard was made in 1910, open for traffic and business in 1911. It was the heart of the San Fernando Valley, and apparently a quite pleasant and neighborly place to shop. Cars were parked at a diagonal (like Glendale's Brand Blvd. today) which effectively and passively narrowed the wideness of the street. It…