City Sells Street Signs as Mementos

When Calabasas resident Angela Knox became engaged to her longtime boyfriend, Martin Tanner, she decided to follow the tradition of finding something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue for her wedding.

Then her mother, Gerta Knox, heard that the city of Calabasas was selling its old blue street signs and thought that would be the perfect gift.

The Knox family has lived in the same house on Park Corona for all of Angela's 28 years.

"I thought it would be a lovely way for her to remember home," Knox said.

The city had nearly 2,000 street signs to replace, but sold only those in good condition. Officials said that nearly 500 are left.

The old signs, sold for $5 to $10 each, are plain, dark or light blue with white lettering. The new signs have the city's logo on a white background with green lettering, and are easier to see at night, city officials say.

The replacement project, funded by a $150,000 Caltrans grant aimed at eliminating hazards with reflective signage, began in 1996 with the sale of signs for major streets such as Mulholland Highway and Calabasas Road.

Arvin Petros, the city's transportation assistant, said he was surprised that residential signs were 10 times as popular as those for the city's main drags.

"I thought people would want something with the word 'Calabasas' on it," he said. "But they want their own street name to keep as mementos."

Proceeds from the sign sale, about $1,000, went to the Friends of the Calabasas Library to support children's programs. Other signs were given away or donated to schools and community organizations to sell as fund-raisers.

The new sign on Park Corona is yet to be installed, but Petros said that should happen well before Angela's Oct. 10 wedding.

"In Southern California, where people move so often, it was lovely to have a real home and not just a house," she said. "Taking that sign to my next home is going to be a nice reminder."

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