Monday, January 15, 2007

Old Towne Mall- Cable Car

West's Slowest Cable Car

At the intersection of Old Towne Lane and Cable Car Way stood an old cable car where on could sit down and relax after a day of shopping at many of the unique stores inside the mall. This shot shows several children enjoying one of the many elements that made the mall so special to South Bay residents. You may have seen the cable car in the background of a previous Old Towne post. This picture shows car 45 from the Powell and Market line. I had nearly forgotten about the cable car until I received this image, then the memories came flooding in. Hopefully they were not false memories. Does anyone out there remember if the cable car lasted the entire life of the mall?

With a new wing of the Del Amo Fashion Center opening recently, it makes me sad to think that today's mall designers are so focused on hip, trendy, and EXPENSIVE stores and locations. They would much rather place a cart selling frivolous junk than a cool thematic element like this cable car. Anyway, I hope this view makes all of the people who visit my site for the Old Towne Mall pictures happy the way it does me.

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15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for the Olde Towne pics...I'm always checking back to see if you've posted more...and it always brings a smile! I was born in 1970 and have distant memories of hanging out there in the mid 70's to early 80's ...to the bitter early 90's - -when all they had were the theaters.

I posted a link to an interesting pic of a singing cop at the Old Towne Mall.


http://www.lottaliving.com/gallery/main.php?g2_view=core.ShowItem&g2_itemId=7655



thanks

Bryan

The Seventh Stranger said...

I too, was born in 1970, and have fond memories of Old Towne mall. Please, keep posting those pictures.

Do you have any pictures of the Food Court where the dixieland band would play? Any pix of the rides?

Also, if you have any Gemco Department Store pictures, I'd love to see those as well. . . .

Anonymous said...

Ahhh I'd love to see a picture of the foodcourt..

What about pictures of the Fantasia ride, arcade and the theater...I remember my parents standing in line to get tickets for Apocalypse Now..haha

-Bryan

PS

(sorry if it's not cool to post links but here's an interesting Gemco one...circa early 80's)

http://www.royhooper.com/gemco.html

the seventh stranger said...

Bryan,

Yeah, the Fantasia ride was cool; it tilted at the end as it went back up. Also, the Haunted House ride was fun, and I seem to remember another ride. I think there were flying Bees (like Dumbo), and a miniature golf course. Who could forget the shooting gallery? And that arcade was huge, if I remember correctly. To me, lining up quarters across the Dragon's Lair console epitomizes that arcade for me. I think there was a comic vendor there. And I love that they had those shops with drug paraphernalia . . . of course I was too young to really know what it was at the time.

As for the Gemco link, yes I've been visiting that site for a while now. I was hoping Bob could pull out a couple from his personal stash.

Bob said...

I came across a North High Alumni webpage with a few pictures from inside Old Towne Mall in the 80's. One pic has a Joe Camel Poster so it must be after 1987. Don't know if anyone has seen them yet. Here's the link;

http://www.nths-saxonalumni.org/memorylane/

What I really wish I could find a picture of is the drink stand that had the moving figures of people doing farm stuff. At least that's how I remember it. I used to love watching those figures. I think it was near the carousel. Speaking of which, some pictures I've seen (like the singing security guard)show a smaller carousel. Does anyone know if there was a small one first, or if they even had two at one time. I only remember riding the double decker Carousel.

Anonymous said...

Bob...thanks for that North High link...A co worker graduated from there in the late 70s and I'm showing him tomorrow. This is great! He always tells me how he went to the Old Towne Mall Arcade to play foosball. It was the TIME OUT arcade that's in the food court picture...Remember there was that "open end" of the mall (I believe north of the food court) that went to KmART.

I wish I could go back in time to the summer of 76 and spend 5 hours in that mall.

Bob & Seventh Stranger: thanks for the interesting stuff..Love it!

And yeah, there was that Bee ride--it rings a bell.


What about that theater...the last film I saw there was Goodfellas in 1990 for $2 when it became a rundown movie house.

There's a scene in the 70's film "THE FOG" that has footage of the Old Towne Mall interior..it looks like a carnival. It's somewhat intersting.. From people I've asked, they say the Movie Theater (South) end was initially full of rides. The Theater came in later.

PS--u guys been to Deadmalls.com to see the Hawthorne mall? I remember living behind the Fosters Freez on Hawthorne Blvd in 1975 and seeing huge dirt hills in that lot, waiting to build the mall....that mall obviously doesn't compare but it was part of my youth...

old pics of the South Bay Galleria would be interesting too...before the indoor part was built.

-Bryan

The Seventh Stranger said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Seventh Stranger said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

7th Stranger

I'll check out that mall the next time I drive to Vegas...interesting.

That link isn't working...can you somehow fix it..I'd love to see it. Thanks

I remember my friends & I bad mouthing the Old Towne mall in the mid-late 80's, always saying stuff like "What an eye sore. When are they going to get rid of that boring mall. Nothing is in there."

I guess I learned to appreciate it as I got older...boy was I wrong.

Bryan

Anonymous said...

The Seventh Stranger

Nice pic of the Carousel....THANKS A BUNCH!

Seems like the perspective is looking out WEST - - the middle/mall entrance doors in the background. Very , very 70's...love the laaady in the white pants. I wish I could get a picture of the game area to the left.

Wasn't there a nice deli near the Carousel...like right where the picture was taken? I remember eating there w/ my mom.

-Bryan

Bob said...

The movie that is said to feature the mall is actually The Fury. It takes place in Chicago, and there's a scene that is supposed to be in the Old Chicago Mall, a mall that was almost identical to Old Towne. I don't know if it was actually filmed in Chicago or in Torrance because of how similar they are. Also, the scene is shot mostly in the carnival section, with only one quick scene shot in the mall itself. Google Old Chicago mall to see pictures of the place.

Anonymous said...

Right Bob, the FURY...I rented it just to see that carnival scene...haha...i read on another forum somewhere that it was indeed Old Town. This guy said he remembers when they were shooting there for that movie....who really knows. Interesting.

Anonymous said...

Nice site update, Bob...

Bob said...

Thanks, just a color scheme change and a new header, maybe a few more little changes to come.

Kangoon said...

I agree about the carts selling junk. It seems like ever mall now crowds their coridors with carts.
No, I don't want your hand cream! No I don't have any jewlery cleaned! The worst part of this trend is that the sales people are required to hassel the people walking by.
I have never went to the Olde Towne Mall but I wish I did.
Thanks
Kev