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City Description:

San Pedro is a community which is part of the City of Los Angeles, with much of the economic activity of the area dependent on the Port of Los Angeles. San Pedro's downtown is in the midst of a renaissance due to the redevelopment of its wharf area reaching from the Passenger Ship Terminal to the tip of San Pedro. San Pedro is also home to the Cabrillo Marina and the Ports 'O Call seaside village shopping area. San Pedro and the South Bay of Los Angeles has a fascinating history. 


South Shores: This neighborhood is adjacent to Rancho Palos Verdes and the ocean, and is bounded by Western Ave. to the east, and 9th Street to the north.

Palisades: This area is adjacent to the Southshores neighborhood and the ocean, and is bounded by Western Ave. on the west, Gaffey Street on the east, and 25th Street on the north.

Point Fermin: This neighborhood is at the southern tip of San Pedro, and is bounded by Gaffey Street to the west. and 22nd Street/S. Harbor Blvd. on the north

Vista del Oro: This area is bounded by Western Ave. on the west, 7th Street on the north, Gaffey Street on the east, and 25th street on the south.

Plaza: This area is bounded by Gaffey Street on the east, 22nd Street/S. Harbor on the south and east, and 7th Street on the north.

Miraleste Pines: This neighborhood is adjacent to the Miraleste area of Rancho Palos Verdes to the west and north, and is bounded by 9th Street on the south and Western Ave. on the east.

Holy Trinity: This area is bounded by 7th Street on the south, Gaffey Street on the east, Western Avenue on the west, and Miraflores on the north

Barton Hill: This area is bounded on the south by 7th Street, Gaffey Street to the west, Anaheim Street to the north, and the L.A. Harbor on the east.


San Pedro is served by the Los Angeles Unified School District and has 12 neighborhood elementary public schools, two intermediate schools (Dana Intermediate and Dodson Intermediate School), and San Pedro High School, as well as two Continuation High Schools (Angels Gate and Cooper).San Pedro also has several private elementary and high schools, including Mary Star of the Sea High School and Trinity Lutheran . 

Property Taxes: The property tax rate for the fiscal year 2011-2012 is 1.245849%   (computed by the standard 1.0% of the property's assessed valuation (in accordance with Proposition 13, a property's assessed valuation is the original purchase price, plus the cost of improvements, based on the value of permits pulled, plus an increase in valuation of 2% per year) plus additional tax rates for voted bonded indebtedness) plus direct assessments of approx. $100-$200 per parcel for such items as school parcel taxes, etc.. 

Taxes are assessed for the fiscal year running from July 1st through June 30th, with property tax bills payable in two installments on December 10th and April 10th. If a property changes ownership during the year, a supplemental tax bill will be prepared prorating the tax increase due to a change in valuation over the remainder of the fiscal year. If a change in ownership occurs between January 1 and May 31 this will result  in two supplemental assessments and two supplemental tax bills. The first supplemental bill is for the remainder of the fiscal year in which the event occurred. The second supplemental bill is for the subsequent fiscal year. 

Property Transfer Tax: The County of Los Angeles levies a transfer tax upon the sale of a property of $1.10 per thousand dollars of the sale price. In addition, the City of Los Angeles levies an additonal transfer tax of $4.50 per thousand dollars. 

Police and Fire Protection:

San Pedro is part of the City of Los Angeles and is served by the Los Angeles Police Department and the Los Angeles Fire Department

Sporta, Parks and Recreation:

San Pedro and the Los Angeles Harbor present many opportunities for sports and recreation. Picnicking, Hiking, Kite Flying, Surfing, Diving, Jet Skiing, Sportfishing, Sailing, Swimming, Windsurfing, Basketball, Football, Baseball and Soccer are just some of the activities available. In addition to the many neighborhood parks in San Pedro, the following are some of the more notable parks and attractions in San Pedro  (For additional information on these and many other points of interest in San Pedro, visit the San Pedro Chamber of Commerce website

White Point ParkThis park at Western Avenue and Paseo del Mar has a children's play area and is right next to the cliffs and is near the tidepools and beach of Royal Palms State Beach 

Royal Palms State Beach

Cabrillo Marina: San Pedro is home to one of the best pleasure boat Marinas, Cabrillo Marina. This marina, east of Gaffey off of 22nd Street, offers recreational boaters the closest marina to both Avalon and the Isthmus on Catalina Island in Southern California. 

Cabrillo Beach: Cabrillo Beach, located off of 36th Street, east of Gaffey at the southern tip of San Pedro adjacent to the breakwater, offers a delightful sandy beach. The Cabrillo Beach pier extends 1200 feet into the Los Angeles Harbor and is a great place to fish.

Cabrillo Marina      Cabrillo Beach         Carillo Marine Aquarium    

Cabrillo Marine AquariumAdjacent to Cabrillo Beach is the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, which offers a great exhibit of sea life. 

Exploration CenterHabitats Hall Map
Map of Exhibit Hall                                                                                          Map Open Ocean Exhibit Area

Friendship Park: This 100 acre park, west of Western Avenue and south of 9th Street, has bar-b-que and picnic areas, and a children's play area.

Angels Gate Park: The spectacular panoramic views of the coastline and Santa Catalina Island from the grassy cliffs of this 64-acre park are breathtaking. There is a children's play area, basketball court, soccer field, and recreation center. The Olympic-sized swimming pool is open July through August.

Angels Gate Park
The Korean Bell of Friendship is a massive bronze bell housed in a stone pavilion in Angel's Gate Park, in the San Pedro district of Los Angeles, California. Located at the corner of Gaffey and 37th Streets, the section of the park is alternatively called the "Korean-American Peace Park," and occupies part of the former Upper Reservation of Fort MacArthur.

The bell was donated by the Republic of Korea to the people of Los Angeles, California to celebrate the bicentennial of the United States, to honor American veterans of the Korean War, and to symbolize friendship between the two nations. . It was dedicated on October 3, 1976 and declared Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument No. 187 in 1978

Korean Friendship Bell -

Bogdonovich Recreation Center: This twenty-acre park boasts panoramic views. Facilities include a picnic area, lighted playground, jogging and hiking trails, two ball fields (one lighted), multi-use field, community building with gym and restrooms. This park is located in the South Shores neighborhood, north of 25th Street at the border with Rancho Palos Verdes

Averill Park: This park, with its meandering streams and pond, dramatic hills and lush greenery, is the site for many weddings. It's not unusual to see brides and grooms posing next to the gazebo for photographs.This park is located in the Vista del Oro neighborhood at 14th Street and Dodson, just east of Western Avenue.

Fort MacArthur Military Museum: Located at 36th Street and Gaffey, From 1916-1945, this was the Upper Reservation of the Fort, and operation post for defense of the harbor against enemy attack from the sea. The site housed four batteries, each secured under 12 feet of concrete, and with walls from 16-30 feet thick.

Each battery housed a giant 14 inch seacoast gun, called a disappearing rifle, capable of firing 14 miles. The guns could be loaded and pre-sighted safely from behind their 20-foot thick parapets, then raised up, fired and retracted back into the loading positions in less than 20 seconds. The museum features photos, drawings, exhibits and memorabilia of Fort MacArthur and Los Angeles Harbor defenses from 1920 through World War II. 

Point Fermin Park: Point Fermin Park consists of 37 landscaped acres of tree-shaded lawns, sheltered pergolas, colorful gardens and a promenade along the edge of the palisade. The vantage point atop the rugged bluffs affords a breathtaking view of the coast toward Santa Catalina Island.The Park is located at the southernmost tip of San Pedro at the end of Gaffey Street, south of Paseo del mar.There are picnic areas, a playground and a small amphitheater. Two trails west of the area lead to the beach and tide pools below. The Point Fermin lighthouse was constructed in 1874, and remained lit until December 9, 1941, when all lighthouses on the West Coast were extinguished.In 2002, a $2.6 million renovation was completed. 

Point Fermin Lighthouse                        

Sunken City: This is an area in the Pt. Fermin area where a landslide which began in  1929 and then accelerated in 1939-1940 destroyed part of Paseo del Mar. and several homes. It is now a jumble of rolling land with palm trees, isolated slabs of the old road, tilting sidewalks, streetcar tracks, and remnants of house foundations, and chimneys above the surf-swept rocky seashore.

Sunken City in Point Fermin area 

22nd Street Landing: This is a commercial fishing boat complex where recreational fisherman may take fishing boat trips, or during the season, whale watching boats depart. 

Ports O'Call Village: This authentic New England-style seaside village encompasses 15 acres of shops, restaurants and attractions. A meandering promenade of cobblestone streets connects the specialty shops. The village also offers harbor cruises, dinner cruises, and fishing excursions. The village is now being completely renovated.

Old San Pedro: This commercial and retail area, bordered by Pacific Avenue and Harbor Boulevard, and 6th and 7th Streets, is the historic heart of San Pedro. Many interesting shops and restaurants are in this area,  particularly Papadakis Taverna at 301 S. 6th Street.

S.S. Lane Victory: This 10,000 ton WWII fully operational cargo ship is available to tour at Berth 94, adjacent to the World Cruise 

  SS Lane Victory  SS Lane Victory
S.S. Lane Victory

Channel Street Skatepark: This skatepark has been recently constructed on an all-volunteer basis and is located under the 110 freeway on Channel Street.

Vincent Thomas BridgeCompleted in 1963, "San Pedro's Golden Gate" was the first bridge of its kind to be constructed on pilings. The Bridge connects the 110 Harbor Freeway to Terminal Island and the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

Vincent Thomas Bridge lit at night (photo courtesy of Ledtronics, Inc. )

Prior to the construction of the bridge, from 1941 through 1963, a private ferry service operated from a terminal at sixth street (see photo to right). For years, various suggestions for direct access to Terminal Island were proposed, including a tunnel, however engineers finally decided that a bridge would be the best solution. The bridge was named for Vincent Thomas, a State Assemblyman from San Pedro for 38 years, who championed the cause of the construction of the bridge. 

San Pedro Waterfront Improvements:

There have been significant improvements made to the San Pedro Waterfront recently, with much more to come. The overall project is called "From Bridge to BreakWater", and is planned to be a 30 year build out for the complete project. The first phase of the project being implemented is the Gateway Plaza and the Cruise Ship Promenade. As stated in the San Pedro Waterfront Improvement website, "The project concept involves development of a public pedestrian promenade, an entry plaza, streetscape and pedestrian enhancements, and street intersection improvements. The purpose of this project is to make improvements to the gateway area to the Port and to meet the following objectives:

~ enhance public access to the waterfront; 
~ provide an attractive pedestrian-friendly corridor ; and 
~ provide a system of public plazas and gathering spaces along the waterfront. 

The first project to be completed, the Cruise Ship Promenade opened to a community celebration in December 2004. Facing the huge cruise ships that depart from the World Cruise Center in San Pedro, the Promenade's overlook decks, custom wave benches, flowing grasses, bocce courts and chess tables, deck chairs and beautiful ipe wood deck have all been well used and received as a benchmark for the projects still to come! "

San Pedro Cruiseship Promenade   San Pedro Promenade  Cruise Ship Promenade
San Pedro Cruise Ship Promenade

Future phases will include increasing access from the Downtown San Pedro area to the waterfront, new parks, increasing pedestrian access, a new 4 acre park "Fisherman's Park", refurbishment of the Ports O'Call village and improved access from Downtown San Pedro, improvements to Cabrillo Beach, and much more. Artists renderings of these future projects are available to view.

Korean Bell:

The Korean Bell of Friendship is a massive bronze bell housed in a stone pavilion in Angel's Gate Park, in the San Pedro district of Los Angeles, California. Located at the corner of Gaffey and 37th Streets, the section of the park is alternatively called the "Korean-American Peace Park," and occupies part of the former Upper Reservation of Fort MacArthur.

Korean Friendship Bell Close up view of Korean Friendship Bell

The bell was donated by the Republic of Korea to the people of Los Angeles, California to celebrate the bicentennial of the United States, to honor American veterans of the Korean War, and to symbolize friendship between the two nations. . It was dedicated on October 3, 1976 and declared Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument No. 187 in 1978.


Students in San Pedro attend schools of the Los Angeles Unified School District. In 1983 the unincorporated area of Eastview , adjacent to San Pedro, was annexed to the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, but there were no changes made to school district boundaries and Eastview remained in the Los Angeles Unified School District. During the years 1983, through at least 1995, the LAUSD opposed all attempts of the PVPUSD to revise its District boundaries to include Eastview. In 1991 the entire Board of Education for PVPUSD signed Resolution 16 supporting the territory transfer for the Eastview area from LAUSD to PVPUSD. PVPUSD was successful in using the school district reorganization process that included an election where 84% of the Eastview residents approved the transfer. However, the process failed when the courts determined that the election was invalid since it did not include residents of the LAUSD. Ultimately,SB 1681 made Eastview an optional attendance area in 1999.

Those students who live in the Eastview area ( Area 88 in the boundary matrix at Attendance Boundaries ) have a one-time election to enroll in either the Palos Verdes School District ( attending Dapplygray Elementary and Miraleste Intermediate ) , or the Los Angeles Unified School District ( Dodson Middle School and Crestwood Elementary School. ). Those living in the Eastview area do not pay the bonded indebtedness on their property tax bills ( 2009/2010 of $21.64 per $100,000 valuation ) for the Palos Verdes School District, but instead are billed for the Los Angeles Unified School District bonded indebtedness on their property tax bills (2009/2010 of $151 per $100,000 valuation ). Eastview residents vote only on School Board elections for Los Angeles Unified Schools regardless of whether they have elected to attend the Palos Verdes School District.

The Vincent Thomas Bridge is a 1,500-foot long suspension bridge crossing the Los Angeles Harbor linking San Pedro, California with terminal island.

The Vincent Thomas Bridge

When the bridge opened in 1963, the toll was 25 cents in each direction. In 1983, the toll increased to 50 cents for westbound traffic but became free for eastbound traffic. In 2000, toll was removed. Prior to the bridge's construction, the Terminal Island Ferry transported people and cars to Terminal Island. The bridge is named after California AssemblymanVincent Thomas of San Pedro.

Terminal Island Ferry

Click on the following links for the history of individual cities in the South Bay Los Angeles beach communities:


Maureen Megowan
Maureen Megowan