Filling the Canals: 1927


By 1925 the roads, water and sewage systems of Venice of America badly needed repair and expansion to keep up with its growing population. It was proposed that Venice be annexed to Los Angeles. While those for and against annexation were nearly evenly matched, a recent influx of LA residents, who moved to Venice to vote, turned the tide. Venice became part of Los Angeles in November 1925.

November 15, 1927

The first truckloads of dirt to fill in the canals arrived on November 15th, 1927. (Herald-Examiner/LAPL)

Los Angeles had annexed the Disneyland of its day, and proceeded to remake Venice in its own image. It was felt that the town needed more streets, not canals, and most of them were paved in 1929 after a three-year court battle led by canal residents.

Grand Canal November 11, 1927
Grand Canal November 11, 1927.

Altair Canal and Cabrillo Canal 90291

Looking north, Altair Canal on the left and Cabrillo Canal on the right.

In 1920 the 13 canals in the City of Venice were:

1. Grand Canal ( Grand Ave.)
2. Lion Canal ( Windward Ave.)
3. Coral Canal ( Main St.)
4. Altair Canal ( Altair Pl.)
5. Cabrillo Canal ( Cabrillo Ave.)
6. Aldebaran Canal ( Market St.)
7. Venus Canal ( San Juan Ave.)
8. Carroll Canal
9. Linnie Canal
10. Howland Canal
11. Sherman Canal
12. Eastern Canal
13. Grand Canal

The canals north of Venice were built by Abbot Kinney. The canals south of Venice were built by the Short Line Beach Company. While Kinney’s were considered the new “Venice of America”, the Short Line Canals were originally nicknamed “New Amsterdam”.

Thanks to WikiPedia and the LA Public Library for the info and pictures!