In University Heights, sunny Trolley Barn Park is a favorite place for neighbors to gather. Whenever I drive past I notice the grass field and playground are alive with activity.
Last weekend, as I walked through the park, I observed plaques and a winding path that remember the old trolley car barn that once occupied this beautiful spot overlooking Mission Valley.
In 1913 the Adams Avenue Trolley Barn was built near Mission Cliff Gardens. The popular botanical destination north of downtown was created by John D. Spreckels, who also owned the San Diego Electric Railway Company. The trolley barn was built directly adjacent to Harvey Bentley’s Ostrich Farm, where visitors could actually ride the exotic birds.
The large brick trolley barn serviced hundreds of cars until 1949. That’s when the streetcars, overtaken by city buses, finally ceased operation.
Many old cobblestone walls and posts from the days of Mission Cliff Gardens can still be seen around Trolley Barn Park and the surrounding neighborhood. Like the surprising images of ostriches, these cobblestone structures today are a symbol of the very unique history of University Heights.
To learn much more about the history of Trolley Barn Park and University Heights, you can visit a very informative page here.
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