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Broadway District Los Angeles

The Broadway District Rises Again

“I remember walking into those opulent interiors, surrounded by the glory of the Renaissance, or the age of Baroque, and spending two or three hours in the dream world of the movies. When I came out again the sky blazed; the heat bounced off the sidewalk, traffic sounds filled the street, I was back in the hard reality of the Depression.”

Jack Smith, Los Angeles Times Columnist

By the 1930’s, the Broadway District in Los Angeles had the highest concentration of cinemas in the world and was by far the most famous street in the US. The ornamental baroque style theaters were witness to unprecedented growth of an industry and a downtown region. Like every meteoric growth spurt, there came an equally dynamic fall from grace. The new film industry chose to move operations to a more glamorous Hollywood, and the downtown area of Los Angeles started to slide into economic decline. Before long, Downtown Los Angeles found itself in a state of despair and abandoned by its residents. It was deemed a very dangerous place to be, and the luxurious heyday of the baroque theaters were now surrounded by squalor.

The Broadway District has started to regain its life and splendor through the efforts of many who were passionate never to let this glorious area of Downtown Los Angeles be lost to the wrecking ball. In May of 1979, the district was added to the National Register of Historic Places and is the largest theater district listed on the register. It remains the largest concentration of movie palaces remaining in the US. With that designation in place, groups such as the Los Angeles Conservancy, the Bringing Back Broadway Initiative, the Broadway Theater Group and the Los Angeles Historic Theater Foundation went to work to revive this glorious area of Downtown Los Angeles. Because of their efforts, Angelenos can now enjoy performances and events in these spectacular venues.

Levitated Broadway is the latest plan to preserve and protect the Broadway District in its original glory, while accommodating the needs of an ever-growing population in Los Angeles. Instead of demolishing some of the old buildings, the plan is to take advantage of space between and on top of the existing structures. This will create new public spaces in the middle of a high-density location, while preserving the integrity and glory of the old district structures and venues.

From the ADG Worksite

Iron lantern at a client’s property

Unnamed

by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

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Adg200

Air Force One – SAM 26000 & SAM 27000 Project Prestige and Power

For decades, world leaders have consistently stated that the most powerful tool the President of the United States possesses is Air Force One. The aircraft projects power, status and is one of the most useful marketing tools available to the United States. Many of those leaders respect the opportunity to visit the President at the White House, but it feels like a common occurrence to many who have even more opulent presidential residences. Very few political or world leaders get the opportunity to ride aboard Air Force One. It is a rare privilege extended to few. Those who do have the opportunity immediately understand the power and prestige that is projected by Air Force One.

The most famous of all Presidential aircraft are SAM 26000 and SAM 27000. Any aircraft which the President rides aboard is designated by the call sign “Air Force One.” The Boeing 707 commissioned by the Air Force in 1962 for President Kennedy was designated Special Air Missions (SAM) 26000. Later in 1972, SAM 27000 was commissioned. The Kennedys commissioned Raymond Loewy, a French-born American designer, to bring a sense of style and luxury to the presidential aircraft. His creative designs created the look and feel of Air Force One that we know today.

Mr. Loewy achieved fame for the magnitude of his design efforts across a variety of industries. He spent most of his professional career in the United States, becoming a naturalized citizen in 1938. Among his designs were the Shell, Exxon, TWA and the former BP logos, the Greyhound Scenicruiser bus, Coca-Cola vending machines, the Lucky Strike package, Coldspot refrigerators, the Studebaker Avanti and Champion.

SAM 26000 and SAM 27000 served all the modern presidents through Bill Clinton. SAM 26000 carried President Kennedy to Dallas, Texas, where it served as the backdrop as the Kennedys greeted well-wishers at Dallas’s Love Field. Later that afternoon, Kennedy was assassinated, and Vice President Johnson assumed the office of President and took the oath of office aboard SAM 26000. At Johnson’s request, the SAM 26000 carried Kennedy’s body back to Washington. A decade later, SAM 26000 took Johnson’s body home to Texas after his state funeral in Washington. SAM 26000 also served President Nixon on several groundbreaking overseas voyages, including his famous visit to the People’s Republic of China and the Soviet Union, both firsts for an American president.

SAM 26000 was replaced in December 1972 by SAM 27000. It was kept as a backup until retired in 1998. Richard Nixon was the first president to use SAM 27000 as a primary aircraft. After announcing his intention to resign the presidency, Nixon boarded SAM 27000 to travel to California.

SAM 27000’s last flight as Air Force One was on August 29, 2001 when it flew President George W. Bush from San Antonio to Waco, Texas. Following the flight, it was formally decommissioned, then flown to San Bernardino International Airport (formerly Norton AFB) in California. It was dismantled and taken to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, where it was reassembled and is on permanent display.

ADG Team with SAM 27000

 

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Ronald Reagan Presidential Library – Simi Valley, CA.

From the Factory Floor

A bronze base…

IMG 7290

by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

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summit inn, route 66, route 66 historical, americana, local, california, las vegas, los angeles

The Summit Inn: The Loss of An American Icon

If you have ever travelled the high desert on I-15 between Los Angeles and Las Vegas, you have seen the Summit Inn. The Summit Inn was an iconic bit of Americana in the middle of the California desert, a landmark along the historic Route 66. The Blue Cut fire exploded in the high desert on August 16th, catching the area residents and emergency responders off guard. During the first day, it burnt about 30,000 acres and took with it numerous structures, homes and landscapes.

A History of the Summit Inn

It wasn’t an architectural point of interest for SoCal, but it was a significant landmark along historical Route 66 that represented a picture of Americana from the heyday of 1950’s travel. The Summit Inn took its name from the original location, between the east and westbound lanes of Route 66 in 1928. The present location was in operation since 1952, when Route 66 was changed along a lower elevation. In 1966, a new owner hit the scene and took control of the Summit Inn, with the idea of having just a Texaco filling station. However, his idea was changed and he agreed to keeping the restaurant portion of the Summit Inn, if a local German woman took control of the food service. Hilda Fish took control of the restaurant and operated it until 2002, when she retired. Route 66 was demolished in 1970 to make way for I-15, but the Summit Inn remained in operation and became an major attraction for travelers between Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

Remembering an Icon

We are sad to see the loss of the Summit Inn. It represented the best of Americana and preserved the history of Route 66. It preserved the memory of the era for future generations to experience. It is too early into this epic fire event to know if the Summit Inn will be rebuilt. There was so much memorabilia and historical articles lost in the fire. We can only hope the Summit Inn will return to its place of honor on along the American highway where it deserves to be.

The Summit Inn

summit inn, route 66, historic

Those Were The Days

summit inn, historic route 66, route 66

A Bit of Americana

summit inn, historical route 66, route 66, americana