If you attend only one event this year marking controversial real estate practices and epic events in California infrastructure, well, Nov. 5 might be a good day for it.
Why? Because it was Nov. 5, 1913, that the Los Angeles Aqueduct opened, diverting water to parched Los Angeles County from the Owens Valley in the Eastern Sierra. Without that water (and the quiet land acquisitions that preceded the opening), Los Angeles as we know it wouldn't exist.
At the Cascades area (in Sylmar), where the aqueduct's official opening was originally celebrated by an estimated 30,000 people, the city Department of Water and Power is presenting a reenactment. It's also hosting commemorative activities at its downtown headquarters.
It was at that 1913 ceremony that William Mulholland, chief engineer for the Los Angeles Bureau of Water Works and Supply, famously said: “There it is. ... Take it.”
As the Los Angeles Visionaries Assn. points out, Mulholland also said: