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Echo Park is a large part of Northeastern Los Angeles with a heavy hispanic presence. The community has seen a large influx of persons in the film, entertainment and music fields that love to restore the custom homes presented by this community. The business area has also seen a wide change of what is now presented to the public.
At the end of the 19th century, when the hills were still covered with native vegetation, a horse-drawn streetcar line served the dirt road that is now Echo Park Avenue. The community of Echo Park was founded by Thomas Kelly, a carriage maker turned real estate developer. In the late 1880s Kelly teamed up with a group of local investors, selling off pieces of what they called “the Montana Tract.” Legend says that the lake got its name after workers building the reservoir remarked that their voices echoed off the canyon walls.
The Los Angeles film industry was centered in Echo Park (then called Edendale) before the studios moved to Hollywood, just before World War I. Mack Sennett‘s studio was in Echo Park until the end of the silent era, and a large number of silent comedies were shot in the neighborhood, as were several Laurel and Hardy, Charlie Chaplin, Our Gang, Ben Turpin, Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle, Charley Chase, Chester Conklin, Three Stooges shorts, and perhaps most notably: the first pie-in-the-face short. Tom Mix also built his studio just over the hill in the Silverlake area, and many Westerns were shot in hills of Echo Park, East Silverlake and the Elysian Hills. Some of the earliest screen performers, including Gloria Swanson and Tom Mix, bought homes in the Angelino Heights and surrounding neighborhoods before moving to Hollywood and other areas.
Before World War I, Echo Park was a middle-class neighborhood, nicknamed “Red Hill” for a concentration of political radicals living there.Since its earliest days, the neighborhood has been known to attract the creative, underground, independent, and iconoclastic elements of society. Postwar “white flight” to the suburbs resulted in the area becoming largely Latino, although there have been Latinos living there since the founding of the city in the late 18th century. Many working-class Chinese immigrants also settled in Echo Park due to its proximity to Chinatown, and the area overlaps the Little Manila district of Los Angeles, home to thousands of Filipinos. Since the early 2000s, artists, actors, musicians and gay couples of all races have flocked the neighborhood for its relatively affordable housing and alternative feel, making it one of the most diversified communities in the United States.
Local attractions include Echo Park and its small lake, which at one time was said to contain the largest planting of lotuses outside Asia. There is also a Cuban festival held annually on the Sunday closest to May 20,to commemorate Cuba’s Independence from Spain and also to honor Cuban poet and patriot José Martí, who has a statue in the park.
Echo Park was named one of the Top 10 Great Neighborhoods for 2008 by The American Planning Association (APA). Echo Park was chosen due to “its historic architecture, breathtaking hillside topography, walkable and pedestrian-friendly streets, and engaged residents who have worked hard to protect and preserve their community,” according to an APA release. Echo Park is a diverse community home to working class families and blossoming artists, and has had to work twice as hard as other communities to create, maintain and advocate for their great community. The community is remarkably dynamic with countless ethnic groups at all income levels. Today, Echo Park is home not only to the annual Lotus Festival, the Cuban Festival, and Historic Filipinotown but also 4-star dining alongside spectacular burrito stands. The area features preserved craftsman-style homes, as well as modern architecture, great schools, parks and libraries.
Echo Park is an affordable are which offer much to the home buyer willing to create and remodel and to the investor seeking a good long term positive return. The community continues to grow with a wide range of ethnic groups moving in the neighborhood. Are you seeking something different with an open mind? Let us discuss all that Echo Park has to offer in an affordable price range for those seeking long term gain in an up and coming community. Sipping coffee at a local spot in your specific pocket area will allow us to review what can be gained and what is presented for your benefit.