Viva Mulholland?

Either you bring the water to L.A. or you bring L.A. to the water
 ~Chinatown 
LA would not be LA without our imported water. LA’s growth was maxing out at the turn of the century because LA did not have enough of the wet stuff. Until the early 1900s the LA River was our sole source of water. LA was founded near downtown…not near the ocean, because downtown was where the freshwater was. LA basically exists because of the LA River. The 11 families who founded Los Angeles constructed the city’s first water system, a brush “toma” or dam across the LA river. This dam diverted water to the Zanja Madre, or mother ditch, which fed irrigation canals in their adjacent fields and to other smaller ditches to supply drinking water. This worked for twenty years or so then the demand for water outstripped the supply.
Then Mulholland…you know, the guy the street is named after…., a city engineer, crafted a plan to bring water in from the Owens Valley (near Mammoth) via an aqueduct. The LA aqueduct, completed in 1913, changed the water landscape of LA and helped turn it into the megalopolis it now is. Read more about him and how he shaped LA here:
http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/opinionla/la-ed-mulholland-20110710,0,6150147.story

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