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Los Angeles County, California
Seal of Los Angeles County, California
Map of California highlighting Los Angeles County
Location in the state of California
Map of the U.S. highlighting California
California's location in the U.S.
Seat Los Angeles
Largest city Los Angeles
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

4,752 sq mi (12,308 km²)
4,061 sq mi (10,518 km²)
691 sq mi (1,790 km²), 14.55%
PopulationEst.
 - (2008)
 - Density

9,862,049 (est)
2,427/sq mi (937/km²)
Founded February 18, 1850
County flag Flag of Los Angeles County, California
Website lacounty.gov

Los Angeles County is a county in California and is by far the most populous county in the United States. Figures from the U.S. Census Bureau give an estimated 2008 population of 9,862,049 residents,[1] while the California Department of Finance lists a January 1, 2009, estimate of 10,393,185.[2] The county seat is the city of Los Angeles, the largest city in California.

The county is home to 88 incorporated cities and many unincorporated areas. The southern portion is the most heavily urbanized area and is home to the vast majority of the population which lives along the Southern California coastline and the inland basins and valleys. The northern half is a large expanse of less-populated desert including the Santa Clarita Valley and the Antelope Valley, which encompasses the northeastern part of the county and is adjacent to Kern County. In between these portions of the county sit the San Gabriel Mountains and the vast wilderness known as the Angeles National Forest.

One of the most diverse counties in the country, it holds most of the principal cities encompassing the Greater Los Angeles Area and is the core of the five counties that make up the area. In 2004, the county's population was larger than the individual populations of 42 states considered separately, and on that basis, is more populous than the aggregate of the 11 least populous states. It is similar in land area to the state of Connecticut and in population to the state of Michigan within the United States, or similar in land area to Trinidad and Tobago and in population to Bolivia. The county is home to over a quarter of all California residents. According to the United States Conference of Mayors, if Los Angeles County were a nation, it would boast a GDP among the twenty largest countries in the world.[3]

Contents

History

Los Angeles County was one of the original counties of California, created at the time of statehood in 1850.[4] The large area once included parts of what is now known as Kern County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County and Orange County. These parts of the county's territory were given to San Bernardino County in 1853, to Kern County in 1866 and to Orange County in 1889. In 1893, part of San Bernardino county became Riverside County.

Geography

With 4,061 square miles[5] (10,517 km²), Los Angeles County borders 70 miles (110 km) of coast on the Pacific Ocean and encompasses numerous other natural landscapes including towering mountain ranges, deep valleys, forests, islands, lakes, rivers, and desert. The county contains the following rivers: Los Angeles River, Rio Hondo, the San Gabriel River and the Santa Clara River. The primary mountain ranges are the Santa Monica Mountains and the San Gabriel Mountains. It also includes the westernmost part of the Mojave Desert, and San Clemente Island and Santa Catalina Island in the Pacific Ocean.

Most of the population of Los Angeles County is located in the south and southwest. The major population centers are the Los Angeles Basin and the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys. Moderate populations are in the Santa Clarita, Crescenta and The Antelope Valley. The area north of the Santa Clarita Valley (Northwest Los Angeles County, adjacent to Ventura and Kern counties) is mostly mountainous, rugged, well-timbered and filled with coniferous forests that receives plentiful snow in the winter, right to the point of blizzard conditions. This area is less populated. Mountains in this area include San Emigdio Mountains, the southernmost part of Tehachapi Mountains, and the Sierra Pelona Mountains.

Most of the highest peaks in the county are located in the San Gabriel Mountains, which are part of the Transverse Ranges. They include Mount San Antonio (10,064 ft) at the Los Angeles-San Bernardino county lines, Mount Baden-Powell (9,399 ft), Mount Burnham (8,997 ft), and the well-known Mount Wilson (5,710 ft) where the Mount Wilson Observatory is located. Several smaller, lower peaks are located in the northern, western, and southwestern Los Angeles County.

The county has a total area of 4,752 square miles (12,308 km²), of which, 4,061 square miles (10,518 km²) of it is land and 691 square miles (1,791 km²) of it (14.55%) is water.

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Major divisions of the county

Los Angeles, CA from the air

Cities

There are 88 incorporated cities in Los Angeles County. The most populous are as follows: [6]

Census-designated places

Unincorporated communities in Los Angeles County

Despite the large number of incorporated cities, most of the area of the county is unincorporated, and falls directly under the county government's jurisdiction. With no city government, residents of these areas must petition the appropriate member of the Board of Supervisors when they have a grievance about the quality of local services.[citation needed]

See: Los Angeles Almanac MAP: Unincorporated Areas and Communities of Los Angeles County
See also: List of districts and neighborhoods of Los Angeles

Adjacent counties

Los Angeles
Counties and bodies of water adjacent to Los Angeles County, California

National protected areas

Transportation Infrastructure

Roads

The county has an extensive freeway network of legendary size and complexity, which is maintained by Caltrans and patrolled by the California Highway Patrol. It also has a vast urban and suburban street network, most of which is maintained by city governments. The county and most cities generally do a decent job of maintaining and cleaning streets. For more information about the primary exception, see the Transportation in Los Angeles article.

Both the freeways and streets are notorious for severe traffic congestion, and the area's freeway-to-freeway interchanges regularly rank among the top 10 most congested points in the country.

In addition to Metro Bus service, numerous cities within the county also operate their own bus companies and shuttle lines.

Major highways

Air

The county's primary commercial aviation airport is Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in Los Angeles. Other important airports include the Long Beach Municipal Airport in Long Beach and Bob Hope Airport in Burbank. Palmdale Regional Airport is planned for expanded commercial service. There are also general aviation airports in Los Angeles, including airports in Van Nuys and Pacoima. Other general aviation airports exist in Santa Monica, Compton, Torrance, El Monte, Lancaster, and Hawthorne.

Train

Los Angeles is a major freight railroad transportation center, largely due to the large volumes of freight moving in and out of the county's port facilities. The ports are connected to the downtown rail yards and to the main lines of Union Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe headed east via a grade-separated, freight rail corridor known as the Alameda Corridor.

Passenger rail service is provided in the county by Amtrak, Los Angeles Metro Rail and Metrolink.

Amtrak has the following intercity Amtrak service at Union Station in the city of Los Angeles.

Union Station is also the primary hub for Metrolink commuter rail, which serves much of the Greater Los Angeles Area.

Light rail, subway (heavy rail), and long-distance bus service are all provided by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro).

Sea

The county's two main seaports are the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach. Together they handle over a quarter of all container traffic entering the United States, making the complex the largest and most important port in the country, and the third-largest port in the world by shipping volume.

The Port of Los Angeles is the largest cruise ship center on the west coast, handling over 1 million passengers annually.

The Port of Long Beach is home to the Sea Launch program, which uses a floating launch platform to insert payloads into orbits that would be difficult to attain from existing land-based launch sites.

Ferries link Avalon to the mainland.

Economy

The major industries of Los Angeles County are international trade, supported by the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach, motion picture and television program production, music recording and production, aerospace, and professional services such as law and medicine.

County of Los Angeles is commonly associated with the entertainment industry. Most of the major studios, including Paramount Pictures, 20th Century Fox, Sony, Warner Bros., and Walt Disney Studios, are all located within the boundaries of the county, in the cities of Los Angeles, Culver City, Burbank and Glendale. Universal Pictures is located in the unincorporated portion of Los Angeles County at Universal City.

For major companies headquartered in the City of Los Angeles, and adjacent cities, see the Economy section of the Los Angeles, California article.

The following major companies have headquarters in Los Angeles County cities not adjacent to the city of Los Angeles:

Demographics

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1850 3,530
1860 11,333 221.0%
1870 15,309 35.1%
1880 33,381 118.0%
1890 101,454 203.9%
1900 170,298 67.9%
1910 504,131 196.0%
1920 936,455 85.8%
1930 2,208,492 135.8%
1940 2,785,643 26.1%
1950 4,151,687 49.0%
1960 6,038,771 45.5%
1970 7,041,980 16.6%
1980 7,477,421 6.2%
1990 8,863,164 18.5%
2000 9,519,338 7.4%
Est. 2008 9,862,049 3.6%

As of the census[10] of 2000, there were 9,519,338 people, 3,133,774 households, and 2,137,233 families residing in the county. The population density was 2,344 people per square mile (905/km²). There were 3,270,909 housing units at an average density of 806 per square mile (311/km²). The racial makeup of the county is 48.71% White[11] 11.0% African American, 0.81% Native American, 10.0% Asian, 0.28% Pacific Islander, 23.53% from other races, and 4.94% from two or more races. 44.56% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race. The largest ancestry groups are German (6%), Irish (5%), English (4%) and Italian (3%). 45.87% of the population reported speaking English at home; 37.89% spoke Spanish as their first language, 2.22% Tagalog, 1.98% Chinese, 1.87% Korean, and 1.57% Armenian. [1]

Because the county is so populous, what is not so evident is that it has the largest Native American population of any county in the nation: according to the 2000 census, it has more than 153,550 people of indigenous descent. "The invisible population that is virtually ignored by the census is that of indigenous people from Mexico, Central and South America."[12]

There were 3,133,774 households out of which 36.80% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.6% were married couples living together, 14.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.8% were non-families. 24.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.98 and the average family size was 3.61.

In the county the population was spread out with 28.0% under the age of 18, 10.3% from 18 to 24, 32.6% from 25 to 44, 19.4% from 45 to 64, and 9.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 97.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.0 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $42,189, and the median income for a family was $46,452. Males had a median income of $36,299 versus $30,981 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,683. There are 14.4% of families living below the poverty line and 17.9% of the population, including 24.2% of under 18 and 10.5% of those over 64.

According to TNS Financial Services, Los Angeles County has the highest number of millionaires out of all other counties in the country, totaling 261,081 households as of 2007, with about 1 out of every 38 households earning more than $1 million. [13]

Housing

The homeownership rate is 47.9%, and the median value for houses is $209,300. 42.2% of housing units are in multi-unit structures.

2008 Demographics

Map of Los Angeles County showing population density in 2000 by census tract

As of: January 1, 2008[2]

  • Total Population: 10,363,850, or about 27% of California's population. The county population increased 8.1% between 2000 and 2008.

Non Hispanic Persons: 52.7%

  • White (Non-Hispanic/Non-Latino): 29.2%
  • African (including African American): 9.6%
  • Asian: 13.1%
  • Other: 0.90%
  • Hispanic or Latino: 47.3%

Other Statistics

  • Male Residents: 49.4%
  • Female Residents: 50.6%
  • Residents Aged under 18: 27.6%
  • Residents Aged between 19 and 64: 62.3%
  • Residents Aged above 65: 10.1%
  • Foreign born: 36.2% (a majority born in Mexico)
  • Poverty Level: 17.7%

Law, government and politics

The county's voters elect a governing five-member Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. The small size of the board means each supervisor represents over 2 million people. The board operates in a legislative, executive, and quasi-judicial capacity. As a legislative authority, it can pass ordinances for the unincorporated areas (ordinances that affect the whole county, like posting of restaurant ratings, must be ratified by the individual city). As an executive body, it can tell the county departments what to do, and how to do it. As a quasi-judicial body, the Board is the final venue of appeal in the local planning process, and holds public hearings on various agenda items.

As of 2008, the Board of Supervisors oversees a $22.5 billion annual budget and approximately 100,000 employees.[14] The county government is managed on a day-to-day basis by a Chief Executive Officer, currently William T Fujioka, and is organized into many departments, each of which is enormous in comparison to equivalent county-level (and even state-level) departments anywhere else in the United States. Some of the larger or better-known departments include:

The Grand Avenue entrance of the Stanley Mosk Courthouse.
  • Los Angeles County Coroner – performs autopsies and determines the cause of death for those who die without medical supervision.
  • Los Angeles County Community Development Commission – serves as the County's housing authority as well as the housing and community and economic development agency with wide-ranging programs that benefit residents and business owners in unincorporated County areas and in various incorporated cities.
  • Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors
  • Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services – administers foster care
  • Los Angeles County Fire Department – provides fire protection, suppression, and prevention as well as emergency medical services
  • Los Angeles County Department of Health Services – operates several county hospitals and a network of primary care clinics, and also runs the public health system, which has a requirement that all restaurants in the unincorporated County and the majority of independent cities prominently post their food safety inspection grade in their front window
  • Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation[15] – administers public parks and the largest public golf course system in the U.S.
  • Los Angeles County Department of Public Social Services – administers many federal and state welfare programs
  • Los Angeles County Department of Public Works – operates countywide flood control system, constructs and maintains roads in unincorporated areas
  • Los Angeles County Department of Regional Planning – maintains the Zoning Code that regulates land use in the unincorporated areas, researches and facilitates land-use decisions and serves to connect the community to the established building regulations.
  • Los Angeles County District Attorney – prosecutes criminal suspects
  • Los Angeles County Museum of Art – public art museum
  • Los Angeles County Probation Department
  • Los Angeles County Public Defender – defends indigent criminal suspects
  • Los Angeles County Public Library – operates a large network of branch libraries
  • Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department – provides law enforcement services to unincorporated areas and cities that do not have their own police departments, and operates the county jails. The LASD is the largest county Sheriff's Department in the United States.
    • Los Angeles County Disaster Communications Service ( DCS )is a volunteer organization administered by the Sheriff's Department Emergency Operations Bureau for the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. Their main function, authorized under County Ordinance, is to provide volunteer disaster relief communication for the citizens of Los Angeles County.
  • Los Angeles County Department of Consumer Affairs – offers consumers in the county a variety of services including: consumer and real estate counseling, mediation, and small claims counseling. The department also investigates: consumer complains, real estate fraud and identity theft issues.

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, despite its name, is not a County department. Technically it is a state-mandated county transportation commission that also operates bus and rail.

The Los Angeles Superior Court, which covers the entire county, is not a County department but a division of the State's trial court system. The courthouses, however, are county-owned buildings that are maintained at county expense.

Politics

Presidential elections results
Year DEM GOP Others
2008 69.2% 2,295,853 28.8% 956,425 2.0% 65,970
2004 63.2% 1,907,736 35.6% 1,076,225 1.3% 39,319
2000 63.5% 1,710,505 32.4% 871,930 4.2% 112,719
1996 59.3% 1,430,629 31.0% 746,544 9.7% 233,841
1992 52.5% 1,446,529 29.0% 799,607 18.4% 507,267
1988 51.9% 1,372,352 46.9% 1,239,716 1.2% 32,603
1984 44.4% 1,158,912 54.5% 1,424,113 1.1% 29,889
1980 40.2% 979,830 50.2% 1,224,533 9.7% 235,822
1976 49.7% 1,221,893 47.8 1,174,926 2.5% 62,258
1972 42.0% 1,189,977 54.8% 1,549,717 3.2% 90,676
1968 46.0% 1,223,251 47.6% 1,266,480 6.3% 168,251
1964 57.4% 1,568,300 42.5% 1,161,067 0.1% 1,551
1960 50.2% 1,323,818 49.4% 1,302,661 0.3% 8,020

Los Angeles County has voted for the Democratic candidate in most of the presidential elections in the past four decades. In 2008 approximately 69% of the electorate voted for Democrat Barack Obama.

In the United States House of Representatives, California districts 27-39 are situated entirely within the county and are all represented by Democrats. In order of district number they are Brad Sherman, Howard Berman, Adam Schiff, Henry Waxman, Xavier Becerra, Judy Chu, Diane Watson, Lucille Roybal-Allard, Maxine Waters, Jane Harman, Laura Richardson, Grace Napolitano, and Linda Sánchez. Parts of the county also lie in the 22nd, 25th, 26th, 42nd, and 46th districts, which are all represented by Republicans: Kevin McCarthy, Buck McKeon, David Dreier, Gary Miller, and Dana Rohrabacher respectively.

In the State Senate, all of districts 20-22 and 24-28, and 30 are entirely within the county and are all represented by Democrats. In order of district number they are Alex Padilla, Jack Scott, Gilbert Cedillo, Gloria Romero, Roderick Wright, Curren D. Price, Alan Lowenthal, Jenny Oropeza, and Ron Calderon. Most of the 17th, 23rd, and 29th districts are in the county. The 17th and 29th districts are represented by Republicans George Runner and Bob Huff, respectively while the 23rd district is represented by Democrat Sheila Kuehl. Parts of the 19th and 32nd districts are also in the county. The 19th district is represented by Republican Tony Strickland while the 32nd is represented by Democrat Gloria Negrete McLeod.

In the State Assembly, all of districts 39, 40, 42-55, 57, and 58 are entirely within the county and are all represented by Democrats. In order of district number they are Felipe Fuentes, Lloyd Levine, Mike Feuer, Paul Krekorian, Anthony Portantino, Kevin DeLeon, John A. Perez, Karen Bass, Mike Davis, Mike Eng, Hector De La Torre, Steven Bradford, Isadore Hall, III, Ted Lieu, Bonnie Lowenthal, Warren T. Furutani, Ed Hernandez, and Charles Calderon. Most of districts 38, 41, and 56 are in the county. The 38th is held by Republican Cameron Smyth; the 41st and 56th are held by Democrats Julia Brownley and Tony Mendoza. Parts of districts 36, 37, 59, 60, and 61 are also in the county. The 36th, 37th, 59th, and 60th districts are represented by Republicans: Sharon Runner, Audra Strickland, Anthony Adams, and Curt Hagman. The 61st is represented by Democrat Nell Soto.

On November 4, 2008 Los Angeles County was almost evenly split over Proposition 8 which amended the California Constitution to ban same-sex marriages. The county voted for the amendment 50.1% with a margin of 20,806 votes.[16]

Legal system

The Los Angeles County Superior Court has jurisdiction over all cases arising under state law, while the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California hears all federal cases. Both are headquartered in a large cluster of government buildings in the city's Civic Center.

Unlike the largest city in the United States, New York City, all of the city of Los Angeles and most of its important suburbs are located within a single county. As a result, both the county superior court and the federal district court are respectively the busiest courts of their type in the nation.[17][18]

Many celebrities like O.J. Simpson have been seen in Los Angeles courts. In 2003, the tabloid television show Extra (based in nearby Glendale) found itself running so many reports on the legal problems of local celebrities that it spun them off into a separate show, Celebrity Justice.

State cases are appealed to the Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District, which is also headquartered in the Civic Center, and then to the California Supreme Court, which is headquartered in San Francisco but also hears argument in Los Angeles (again, in the Civic Center). Federal cases are appealed to the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which hears them at its branch building in Pasadena. The court of last resort for federal cases is the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C.

Seal

The county was targeted with the threat of legal action by the ACLU in 2004 regarding a small cross on its seal. The ACLU said that separation of church and state prohibited this display. On September 14, 2004, the seal was modified to address this and other complaints.[19][20]

Crime Statistics

Crime in 2008 (reported by the sheriff's office or police)[21]

  • Assaults: 5452
  • Auto thefts: 7727
  • Burglaries: 5254
  • Murders: 568
  • Rapes: 582
  • Robberies: 2210
  • Thefts: 9682

Education

The Los Angeles County Office of Education provides a supporting role for school districts in the area. The county office also operates two magnet schools, the International Polytechnic High School and Los Angeles County High School for the Arts.

Colleges and universities

Colleges

Universities

Religion

As of 2000, there are hundreds of Christian churches, 202 Jewish synagogues, 145 Buddhist temples, 48 Islamic mosques, 44 Bahai worship centers, 37 Hindu temples, 28 Tenrikyo churches and fellowships, 16 Shinto worship centers, 14 Sikh gurdwaras in the county.[22]

Sites of interest

L.A. County Fair at dusk, 2008
Photo of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art during its 2005 Ancient Egypt exhibit.

The county's most visited park is Griffith Park, owned by the city of Los Angeles. The county is also known for the annual Rose Parade in Pasadena, the annual Los Angeles County Fair in Pomona, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Los Angeles Zoo, the Natural History Museum, the La Brea Tar Pits, the Arboretum of Los Angeles, and two horse racetracks and two car racetracks (Pomona Raceway and Irwindale Speedway), also the RMS Queen Mary located in Long Beach, and the Long Beach Grand Prix, and miles of beaches—from Zuma to Cabrillo.

Venice Beach is a popular attraction where its Muscle Beach used to find throngs of tourists admiring "hardbodies". Today it is more arts-centered. Santa Monica's pier is a well known tourist spot, famous for its ferris wheel and bumper car rides, which were featured in the introductory segment of the television sitcom Three's Company. Further north in Pacific Palisades one finds the beaches used in the television series Baywatch. The fabled Malibu, home of many a film or television star, lies west of it.

In the mountain, canyon, and desert areas one may find Vasquez Rocks Natural Area Park, where many old westerns were filmed. Mount Wilson Observatory in the San Gabriel Mountains is open for the public to view astronomical stars from its telescope, now computer-assisted. Many county residents find relaxation in water skiing and swimming at Castaic Lake Recreation Area - the county's largest park by area - as well as enjoying natural surroundings and starry nights at Saddleback Butte State Park in the eastern Antelope Valley - California State Parks' largest in area within the county. The California Poppy Reserve is located in the western Antelope Valley and shows off the State's flower in great quantity on its rolling hills every spring.

Museums

Entertainment

Music venues

Amusement Parks

Other attractions

Other areas

Lakes and reservoirs

  • Crystal Lake
  • Echo Lake
  • Elizabeth Lake
  • Hughes Lake
  • Holiday Lake
  • Jackson Lake
  • Munz Lakes
  • Tweedy Lake

See also

References

  1. ^ QuickFacts.Census.gov
  2. ^ a b "County population estimates with annual percent change, January 1, 2009 data". http://www.dof.ca.gov/research/demographic/reports/estimates/e-1/2008-09/documents/E-1%202009%20Internet%20Version.xls. 
  3. ^ The Role of Metro Areas in the US Economy. United States Conference of Mayors, 2002: 5. USmayors.org
  4. ^ Coy, Owen C.; Ph.D. (1923). California County Boundaries. Berkeley: California Historical Commission. pp. 140. ASIN B000GRBCXG. 
  5. ^ QuickFacts.Census.gov, U.S. Census Bureau
  6. ^ California Department of Finance 2008 Population Estimate
  7. ^ "JDPower.com." J. D. Power and Associates. Retrieved on August 22, 2009.
  8. ^ FactFinder.Census.gov, "Thousand Oaks city, California". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on August 22, 2009.
  9. ^ Encyclopedia.com, "Dole gets ready to turn first shovel of headquarters dirt: plans are set to go to Westlake Village City Council". (Dole Food Co. Inc. Los Angeles Business Journal. January 31, 1994. Retrieved on September 27, 2009.
  10. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  11. ^ This included over 65,000 Arabs and 75,000 Iranian, who many people would not count as White (see 2000 Census fact sheet table). For a clear discussion of Arabs being counted as white, see Census.gov
  12. ^ "The Invisible Minority", Indian Country Today, 9 Nov 2009, accessed 12 Mar 2010
  13. ^ http://blogs.wsj.com/wealth/2008/05/05/california-boasts-most-millionaires/tab/article/
  14. ^ William T Fujioka, "Department Section," County of Los Angeles, Annual Report 2007-2008, 4.
  15. ^ Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation
  16. ^ SFgate.com
  17. ^ A look at your Superior Court, Public Information Office, Los Angeles Superior Court
  18. ^ About the Los Angeles Superior Court
  19. ^ Kennedy, J. Michael (May 25, 2004). "County Seal Has a Cross the ACLU Can't Bear". Los Angeles Times. http://articles.latimes.com/2004/may/25/local/me-cross25. Retrieved March 11, 2010. 
  20. ^ "County Insignia History". http://lacounty.gov. Retrieved March 11, 2010. 
  21. ^ "city-data - Los_Angeles_County-CA". analyzed data from numerous sources. http://www.city-data.com/county/Los_Angeles_County-CA.html. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  22. ^ Selected Non-Christian Religious Traditions in Los Angeles County: 2000 Prolades.com

External links


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Los Angeles County is a large region in Southern California roughly the same size as Rhode Island. Overwhelmed by the city of Los Angeles, which spreads its tentacles throughout the county, there are many other cities in this area.

Regions

The county spreads over thousands of square miles. Angelenos usually divide up the county into several regions to keep them straight.

Cities

There are 88 cities in Los Angeles County. Below are some of the more famous:

  • Beverly Hills - Home to many of the entertainment industry's rich and famous, as well as some amazing high-end shopping.
  • Hollywood - While technically a part of the city of Los Angeles, Hollywood is nevertheless one of the world's most famous destinations.
  • Long Beach - Located in the southern part of the county, Long Beach is home to the Queen Mary, the Long Beach airport, and other common tourist stops.
  • Los Angeles - The City of Angels offers food and entertainment options that are among the best in the world.
  • Pasadena - Sitting at the foot of the San Gabriel Mountains, it is the home of the Rose Parade and the Rose Bowl on New Year's day. Its Old Pasadena district is one of the more vibrant destinations in the county.
  • Santa Monica - Famous for its pier, Santa Monica is a beach town popular with visitors.
  • Venice - Also technically part of Los Angeles, Venice is home to the infamous Muscle Beach -- where a 300 pound benchpress is merely a warm-up. A great way to learn the history and have fun with friends is with scavenger hunts put on by local outfit "venicescavengers". A must do... www.Venicescavengers.com
  • Angeles National Forest [1] - +1 626 574-5200 Fax: +1 626 574-5233. Spanning most of the county from east to west, Angeles National Forest offers camping, fishing, hiking and skiing. Driving through the forest is free but if you plan on parking, an Adventure Pass is required except for the last Saturday of each month. Daily Pass: $5, Annual Pass: $30.
  • Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area [2] - 24-hour recorded message: +1 805 370-2300, Visitor Information: +1 805 370-2301 Fax: +1 805 370-1850. The Santa Monica Mountains NRA is made up of several smaller units ranging from an old movie studio lot to wilderness areas and is administered by the National Park Service.

Understand

Los Angeles is in the Pacific Time Zone and practices Daylight Savings Time.

For emergencies in Los Angeles County, dial 911 toll-free from any phone including payphones. Note that dialing 911 from a cell-phone will place you in contact with the California Highway Patrol.

Talk

English and Spanish are the two most common languages spoken in Los Angeles County. Most government agencies and many businesses will have someone available who speaks Spanish. Because of the ethnic diversity of Los Angeles, there are many neighborhoods where other languages are dominant, mostly from Asian countries.

  • Los Angeles International Airport [3] (IATA: LAX) - 1 World Way, Los Angeles, +1 310 646-5252. LAX is one of the major ports of entry for international flights into the United States as well as a major destination for domestic flights so it can be quite busy, especially around holidays. Most of the major airlines as well as some smaller regional airlines fly into LAX. All of the major rental car agencies have a location near the airport with hundreds of cars available for rent.
  • Bob Hope Airport [4] (IATA: BUR) - 2627 Hollywood Way, Burbank, +1 818 840-8840. Alaska, America West, American, Delta Airlines, JetBlue, Southwest and United Airlines fly into this airport located north-east of Downtown.
  • Long Beach Airport [5] (IATA: LGB) - 4100 Donald Douglas Dr., Long Beach, +1 562 570-2678, Fax: +1 562 570-2603 e-mail:lgbarpt@longbeach.gov. Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, America West Airlines and JetBlue Airways fly into this airport located in southern Los Angeles County.
Airports near Los Angeles County
  • Ontario International Airport [6] (IATA: ONT) - 1940 East Moore Way, Ontario, +1 909 937-2700. Located 37 miles (59 km) from of Downtown Los Angeles, Ontario is about a 40 minute drive east of Downtown.
  • John Wayne Airport [7] (IATA: SNA) - 18601 Airport Way, Santa Ana, +1 949 252-5200. Located 40 miles (64 km) from Downtown Los Angeles, John Wayne Airport is a 45 minute drive south-east of Downtown.

By car

Several major highways come into Los Angeles County.

  • From the north: Interstate 5 and U.S. Highway 101
  • From the east: Interstates 10 and 15
  • From the south: Interstates 5 and 405
  • Amtrak [8] - Toll free: +1 800 872-7245
  • Metrolink [9] - Toll free: +1 800 371-5465. Metrolink trains connect surrounding counties with Los Angeles County with most lines having a terminus at Union Station in Downtown Los Angeles. Each line has several stops in Los Angeles County in addition to stops in their originating counties.
  • Long Beach has a Carnival Cruise Lines [10] terminal. 231 Windsor Way, Long Beach, +1 562 901-3232.
  • San Pedro has a cruise ship terminal that all of the major cruise ship lines (except Carnival) sail from. Berth 90-93, San Pedro, +1 310 514-4049. Fax: +1 310 514-4057.

Get around

Los Angeles County has an extensive freeway system that criss-crosses the county. The freeway system is a mixed blessing allowing access to most areas at the same time being very confusing for the uninitiated, especially during rush hour. Driving is a central and extremely frustrating part of life in Los Angeles. See driving in Los Angeles County for some basic information.

Several Los Angeles County cities also have their own bus lines.

  • Los Angeles area gardens with native plants. Theodore Payne Native Plant Garden Tour [13] - +1 818 768-1802, organized by the Theodore Payne Foundation for Wild Flowers and Native Plants [14]. The annual garden tour, which began in 2004, showcases mostly private gardens throughout the Los Angeles basin that feature 50% or more native plants. Unlike most tours, garden owners (many of whom design the gardens themselves) and knowledgeable docents are available to identify plants and discuss techniques of gardening with California native plants. The tour usually takes place in April over a weekend, with half the gardens open to attendees on Saturday and the other half on Sunday. In 2006, more than 1,700 people visited more than 30 gardens; in 2008, more than 1,000 people visited 38 private gardens; in 2009, more than 46 gardens are featured. Garden locations ranged from Santa Monica to Monrovia, from Woodland Hills to Tujunga.
  • Television Show Tapings. The major studios offer free tickets for those wanting to view the taping of a television show. Numerous agencies handle ticket distribution including Audiences Unlimited [15] and Hollywood Tickets [16]. Tickets can also sometimes be obtained through the studio's web site, and nightly shows such as the Tonight Show often have a studio box office that distributes tickets for that night's tapings. There are also occasionally booths or individuals in Hollywood or other areas frequented by tourists distributing tickets; however, you should never pay anyone for any ticket to a television show taping - tickets are always free, and scalped tickets are illegal and may not be honored by the studios. Also, note that even if you have a ticket seating is not necessarily guaranteed and will be provided first-come, first-served. You will need to arrive at least one hour prior to filming, and filming typically lasts for 2-3 hours.  edit

Eat

Los Angeles and the surrounding area offer the most eclectic dining experience you can ever imagine. There are a few good places of note:

Fred62, a great retro diner, is on Vermont Avenue just north of Sunset Boulevard.

You want a good old fashioned meal that Frank Sinatra would envy, ironically he ate here a few times from rumors. Musso And Frank's great food, great atmosphere located on Hollywood Boulevard a few blocks east from Mann's chinese (theater not buffet).

Pink's Hot Dogs, you can't come to L.A. and not eat here, its located on Fairfax about 2 miles off sunset, The best hotdog you will ever consume.

Tommy's, scattered around the city; popular place to get a chili cheeseburger and chili cheese fries. Many are open late or 24-hour. Beware of imitators.

Bob's Big Boy, leave the relish off this tasty morsel and add on some 1K Island, you'll thank me later. Located in the sunny vale of Burbank a couple of blocks from Universal City Walk.

Mercialgio great Italian place right outside the gate of Universal City walk, one of the best Italian joints in town.

House of Blues, where else but on Sunset Strip, great awesomely bad food, great prices, rocking place.

The Roxy, up the street from the House of Blues, not too shabby either, used to be the hang out back in the day.

The Griddle Cafe, little place, get up early and bring your appetite, they have some of the best pancakes you will ever experience, the french press coffee is some of the best in town, filled with a lot of pretentious industry types but if you can get past that you will love the food.

Roscoes Chicken And Waffles, if you are from out of town you gotta have some chicken and waffles, its located on Grove, right off Sunset near the 101. nuff said on this place

Taco trucks can be found along streets at night and are open late and provide inexpensive authentic food.

  • Cahuenga Corridor, North of Hollywood but South of the 101, quite a few fun places to inbibe quantities of alcoholic beverages, if you have a woman or are a woman check out "The Beauty Bar" 10 dollars for a Martini and a Manicure, get there early the line tends to gather after 9PM ish.
  • Lucky Stikes Bowling alley, this place is just awesomely awesome, its located off Hollywood and Vine, behind the borders. What more do I need to say than bowling and beer. Also located downtown across from the Staples Center.
  • Bar 107, this is downtown, but quite a fun happenin joint. Its at ironically 107 4th Street, towards East L.A. Great kitsch.
  • Sunset Strip, mainly the location of live music venues, it also has drinking destinations such as The Rainbow Bar, SkyBar, Chateau Marmont, Libertine, and Saddle Ranch Chop House (one of the few places in LA with a mechanical bull).

Stay safe

For all emergencies in Los Angeles County, dial 911.

There are some areas in Los Angeles County that are considered to be less safe than others. Parts like South Los Angeles (a.k.a. South Central: Compton, Inglewood, etc.), Harbor Gateway, Wilmington, and other cities aren't considered very safe.

The area east of Downtown L.A., aka East L.A., also has a higher crime rate than other areas and has gang problems as well.

  • Disneyland - in Anaheim, not too far from the border of Los Angeles County.
  • Palm Springs - Desert playground of the rich and famous.
  • Joshua Tree National Park - Two different deserts meet in this park, which is filled with a vast array of rock formations and desert plant life, especially in the spring or after rainfall when the desert flowers are in bloom.
  • Santa Barbara - A quiet sea-side resort town 1 1/2 hours north of Los Angeles.
  • San Diego - A sunny oceanfront city with many attractions such as Sea World, the San Diego Zoo and the museums of Balboa Park.
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Simple English

Los Angeles County, California
Map

Location in the state of California

California's location in the USA
Statistics
Founded 1850
Seat Los Angeles
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

4,752 sq mi (12,308 km²)
4,061 sq mi (10,518 km²)
691 sq mi (1,790 km²), 14.55%
Population
 - (2006)
 - Density

9,948,081 (est)
2,450/sq mi (946/km²)
Website: lacounty.info
Named for: Los Angeles, California

Los Angeles County is a county in California and is by far the most populous county in the United States. Figures from the U.S. Census Bureau give an estimated 2006 population of 9,948,081 residents, [1] while the California State government's population bureau lists a January 1 2007 estimate of 10,331,939. [2] The county seat is the City of Los Angeles.

Other websites


Coordinates: 34°11′N 118°16′W / 34.18°N 118.26°W / 34.18; -118.26



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