Palos Verdes Estates – Oldest City on the Palos Verdes Peninsula
The City of Palos Verdes Estates, is the oldest of the four cities of the Palos Verdes Peninsula and was incorporated December 20, 1939.
In 1913, New York financier Frank A. Vanderlip Sr, purchased the land from the Bixby family. His idea was to build a planned residential community, and he called out the famous Olmsted Brothers, sons of Frederick Law Olmsted Sr., who designed Central Park in New York City, to help lay out this new community. After designing roadways, hillsides and placement of trees, they decided that 28% of the land area should be restricted to building.
Vanderlip’s plans were changed after World War 1, since monies were harder to come by. The division of land started, and the first home construction of Spanish design started in the early 1920’s. In 1923 deed restrictions were imposed and the outlined provision for development was started and governed by the Palos Verdes Homes Association, which in turn were liable for taxes on the parkland. Soon after the economic crash in 1929, the Palos Verdes Home Association owed taxes to Los Angeles county and concern that the parkland might have to be sold to pay back tax dollars owed, the city voted in 1929 for incorporation. The new city parklands, were deeded by the Homes Association in 1940.
Still to this day, Palos Verdes Estates city government has been trying to keep the vision of the original founders in preserving and protecting the natural assets of Palos Verdes Estates uniqueness.
Photo of Palos Verdes coastline, courtesy of the City of Palos Verdes Estates.