Monterey Park is a family-oriented community located in the hub of the West San Gabriel Valley. Almost 80% of the households in the City are families, and single-family homes comprise approximately two-thirds of the housing. More than half of the households owns their homes. With a population of about 67,500 in 2000, the City is one of the few communities in the Southland where racial/ethnic "minority" groups make up the majority of the population. As one of the older communities in the West San Gabriel Valley, the city also has a large elderly population. Elderly persons and seniors approaching retirement represent almost a quarter of all City residents.
|A little about the history
The original natives of Monterey Park where Shoshone Indians, later renamed the Gabrielino Indians by the Spaniards. When Fathers Angel Somero and Pedro Canbon led the first parties of soldiers into the San Gabriel Valley in 1771, there were parties of soldiers into the San Gabriel Valley in 1771, there were more than 4,000 Gabrielino residents. By the early 1800's, the area now called Monterey Park was part of the Mission San Antonio.The area first received a separate identity when Alessandro Repetto purchased 5,000 acres of the rancho and built his home, not far from where the Edison substation is now located on Garfield Avenue. In 1916, the new residents of the area initiated action to become a city when the cities of Pasadena, South Pasadena and Alhambra proposed to put a large sewage treatment facility in the area. The community voted itself into city hood on May 29, 2916, by a vote of 455 to 33. The City's new Board of Directors immediately outlawed sewage plants within city boundaries and named the new city Monterey Park. The name was taken from an old government map showing the oak-covered hills of the area as Monterey Hills. In 1920, a large area on the south edge of the city broke away and the separate city of Montabello was established.
| Recent Monterey Park
Striving to blend residence and commerce, Monterey Park maintains 60% of its space for residential living, 12% for industrial, 10% for commercial and retail use, and 18% for schooling and recreational facilities. Its major businesses are auto sales, banking, medical, and food service. As one of the most diverse and community oriented cities in the area, it hosts numerous cultural, educational, and festive programs, manyof which have received national attention, such as the Harmony Festival, a celebration of cultural diversity; the DARE Program, a drug abuse prevention program for youth; the Good Student Discount Program, a community/business partnership that rewards good students with discounts; and LAMP, a program to provide English-as-a-second language assistance. It is a City with a rich mix of people of many backgrounds.
The Chinese-dominated business district, between Garfield Avenue and Garvey Avenue, is called "Downtown Monterey Park", in the mid-1980's Lincoln Park Hotel was built to predominately service tourist from Taiwan and Hong Kong. Monterey Park has many choices of Hong Kong fusion cafes, there are several Cantonese seafood restaurants, as well as restaurants offering Mainland Chinese fare. A variety of cuisine can be found throughout the city.
Places of Interest
Monterey Park is a home to the Garvey Ranch Observatory, located in Garvey Ranch Park, which is operated by the Los Angeles Astronomical Society (LAAS). It adjoins a telescope construction workshop, a historical museum and a library. The observatory houses an 8-inch (200 mm) refractor, and the grounds are open to the public for astronomical observation on Wednesday evenings, hosted by LAAS members. East Los Angeles College is located along the southern boundary of the City. The college has undergone a large scale renovation. Built in 1929, Jardin El Encant, otherwise known as "El Encanto" is a Spanish-style building located at 700 El Mercado. El Encanto is home to beautiful tile and hand painted woodwork. The building, originally the sales office for Midwick Estates, was once a USO center and speakeasy. The City invested in the renovation of this beautiful structure which has significant historic value to the community. Monterey has numbers of opportunities to experience unique dining fare, great shopping, and patronage numerous special events. The city is proud to annually host the Chinese Lantern Festival, Cherry Blossom Festival, Cinco de Mayo,Play Days (City's anniversary of incorporation). Fourth of July and the Harmony Celebration.
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