Sun Valley, Los Angeles, California

Sun Valley, Los Angeles, California

Sun Valley is a district in the San Fernando Valley region of the City of Los Angeles, California.

It is bordered by Burbank in the east, Shadow Hills on the north, Panorama City in the west, Pacoima to the northwest, and North Hollywood in the south. The district is served by the Golden State and Hollywood freeways. Major thoroughfares include San Fernando Road, Laurel Canyon, Roscoe Boulevards, Vineland Avenue, Sheldon Street, Glenoaks Boulevard and Sunland Boulevard.

Most of the stone, gravel, and sand used in construction in Los Angeles between the 1920s and the 1970s came from quarries in Sun Valley. Although these are mostly closed (with many of them having become landfill pits), Sun Valley is still predominantly industrial, although it has some 1960s-vintage residential districts. As is the case with most of the eastern San Fernando Valley, the area's population is largely working-class and Latino.

Located at the base of the Verdugo Mountains, Sun Valley is notably prone to flash floods, and one such flood in early 2005 destroyed much of Tujunga Avenue.


In 1874 Senator Charles Maclay (for whom Maclay Street in San Fernando is named) acquired 56,000 acres (230 km²) of land across the San Fernando Valley. The area extended from Sunland Blvd., all the way west to the Chatsworth Hills. East of Sunland was Rancho Rafael, a large land grant to Jose Maria Verdugo by the Spanish Crown. By 1876 the Southern Pacific Railroad was constructed through the eastern San Fernando Valley, linking Southern and Northern California.

Around the 1880s, Sun Valley was originally known as Roberts, which was the name of a general store - and the only business in the area. At that time the area was classified as one of the five healthiest places in the United States to live (before smog) and with the increased accessibility of the railroad, parcels of land in the area were being sold off to families coming to the area. The population of the Greater Los Angeles area at the time was about 200,000.

In 1896 Roberts changed its name to Roscoe. There is speculation that the name for the community came from a railroad employee by the name of Roscoe, who was killed in a train wreck during a train robbery near Sunland Blvd. and San Fernando Road. There are some spurious reports in later years that is was named after famous actor, Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle, after he had made movies on location in the area, however Roscoe was already the name of the community before motion pictures were in widespread use. By 1905 there were seven families living in Roscoe. In (or around) 1915 the first gas pump on Route 99 (San Fernando Road/the main route between Glendale and Bakersfield) was installed at Sunland Blvd. and San Fernando Road by Alex Ratner. The Ratners were a new family in town and have remained active and supportive members of the community ever since. Ratner Street is named for this family. Adom Ratner-Stauber, involved in real estate development and property management in the area, is the great-grandson of Alex. The change to the current name of Sun Valley was made in 1948 by residents in a movement spearheaded by the Chamber of Commerce. Vestiges of the former name remain in the name of Roscoe Elementary School and the telephone exchange 76x-xxxx (ROscoe x-xxx).

The A. Louis Forsch family, relatives of Mrs. Alex Ratner, arrived soon after the Ratners and within a short time were the owners/operators of Roscoe Hardware. Being run by son Jack, and grandsons Gary and Glenn, this was probably one of the longest continuously running businesses in Sun Valley until its closure around 2003.

Grace Coummunity Church is a non-denominational, evangelical megachurch located in Sun Valley. John MacArthur is the pastor-teacher of the congregation, founded in 1956.

Notable residents and businesses

* The Theodore Payne [ Foundation for Wild Flowers and Native Plants] is located in Sun Valley, and is dedicated to helping Californians and visitors discover the beauty of California native plants. The organization operates the only nursery in Los Angeles County devoted exclusively to California natives, offering more than 500 species. The organization also collects seeds for propagation and sale. The organization also operates an annual wildflower hotline from March to May which lists wildflower sites throughout California. The wildflower hotline number is (818) 768-3533. The organization also offers classes and conduct an annual native plant garden tour in the greater Los Angeles area.
* Bob Hope Airport straddles Burbank and Sun Valley
* Lockheed Aircraft had many factories located in Sun Valley during WWII
* Most likely the oldest operating rock quarry in Southern California
* The largest concentration of auto dismantling facilities in Southern California
* Steve Garvey
* David Scott Stone Musician, sound artist, composer
*Todd Bridges Played in the hit TV series Diff'rent Strokes from 1978-86


Primary and secondary schools

Public schools

Sun Valley is zoned to schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Elementary schools serving the Sun Valley area include: []
* [ Fernangeles Elementary School]
* Glenwood Elementary School
* [ Roscoe Elementary School]
* [ Stonehurst Avenue Elementary School]
* Camellia Elementary School (in North Hollywood)
* [ Strathern Elementary School] (in Shadow Hills)
* Vinedale Elementary School (in Shadow Hills)

Two middle schools, [ Sun Valley Middle School] and Byrd Middle School, both in Sun Valley, serve the area.

John H. Francis Polytechnic High School in Sun Valley serves much of Sun Valley, while East Valley High School in North Hollywood serves other portions of Sun Valley.

Robert H. Lewis Continuation High School is located on the campus of Francis Polytechnic.

Private schools

Village Christian School, alma mater for many actors, including Paul Walker, is located in Sun Valley.

Los Angeles Public Library operates the Sun Valley Branch.


* [ Sun Valley Chamber of Commerce]

External links

* [ Sun Valley Neighborhood Council]
* [ The Theodore Payne Foundation for Wild Flowers and Native Plants]
* [ Sun Valley Chamber of Commerce]

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