This is Astro Loop, stair walk #23 from the book “Secret Stairs,” by Charles Fleming. Another gorgeous day and another adventure to a new area in Silver Lake. I met my friend at Astro Coffee Shop where she had, according to her,” the best hamburger ever.”
The house at the top of the stairs looks like a little castle. It is the house where Judy Garland lived with her mother and sister in 1933. Actor Eric Roberts lived in this house in the 80’s.
Continuing to walk through the nice neighborhoods with view of Silver Lake reservoir, we came to a wide dirt road known as Silver Lake Court. This unpaved road, which runs parallel to Riverside Drive and the I-5 freeway, was once the route of the Red Car electric trolley that ran to downtown Los Angeles. Even some of the Silver Lake locals have not heard of Silver Lake Court. Walking along the dirt road, you come to the cement footings of the old Fletcher Red Car Viaduct.
The viaduct, built in 1906, carried trolley passengers over a 500-foot-long, 40-foot-high wooden trestle. The trolley line was decommissioned in 1955 and the viaduct was dismantled in 1959. In 2003, the Fletcher Red Car Trestle Footings were designated by the city of Los Angeles as Historic-Cultural Monument No. 770. These footings have upside down pink hearts with white words written on them, which are cemented into the footings. Charles Fleming told me that the artwork periodically changes. He doesn’t know who changes the art work but at one time he saw artwork which incorporated TV sets. I wonder if the art work has to meet approval from the city, since the footings on which these signs are cemented are an historic monument. The stairs on the stair walks were built to connect the neighborhoods to the trolley stops. However, you rarely see signs of where the trolley actually ran, so it was nice to see it on this walk.