When I did the “Roads to Balboa Park” story for the Union-Tribune back in February, I was able to have some fun doing research on highways around our county to see which were in operation back in 1915. Also got some great stuff from the archives of the Automobile Club of Southern California and the San Diego History Center.

What I missed was this story, which goes back to 1971 and would have provided most of the research I needed for my article. It’s “Racetrack to Highway,” and talks about the early roads and bond issues that paid for them. Yes, San Diego County and city residents not only voted to pay taxes for better roads, some of them donated money for roads to be built through the desert.

You think there’s a rivalry today between San Diego and Los Angeles? There was probably hatred a century ago, as the two cities vied for the commerce that a coast-to-coast highway would bring them. The article talks about this.

So, turn back the clock more than a century and enjoy “Racetrack to Highway.”


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