Down on the Street: 400 Old Cars And Trucks On The Streets of Alameda


What is it about Alameda, California, that attracts vintage (read: sometimes just old) cars? Is it the mild weather ... or something else entirely?

Jalopnik has a neat feature called Down on the Street, which features snapshots of cars parked on the street. The Alameda series has more than 400 vintage cars and trucks:

Why does such a small city have so many old cars parked on the street?

Good question, and one to which I have no authoritative answer. I have some theories, which are:


* The Island That Time Forgot: Alameda is a weird place, and I mean that in the best possible way. It's essentially a David Lynch movie set in a sunny California climate, among Victorian and Craftsman architecture and a small-town mentality that belies its urban grid street pattern and very high population density. The island is full of old people who never cross a bridge, whose original-owner classics never drive faster than 25 and are used only for short trips to Ole's Waffles or Lee Auto Supply. It's also full of young people who start to feel that an old car just, you know, make the most sense. You never know what this town will do to you; Jim Morrison arrived on the island as a wholesome Navy kid, and by the time he departed for LA he'd become a dopefiend weirdo poet.

Link - via jalopnik

From the Upcoming ueue, submitted by Buhandi.

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I too have been a follower of DOTS and I love to see old cars still being driven and used even if it's on an occasional basis.
I'm almost half tempted to start a DOTS of my own in the little town I currently live in.
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I was lucky enough to live and work on Alameda for a couple of years back in the mid-80s and it was fantastic. My girlfriend (who's now my wife) and I had our first place, a small 2 bdrm cottage, near the base of the High Street bridge, which is a drawbridge between Alameda and Oakland. So cool (unless you were stuck in traffic on High St.) to watch the bridge raise and boats sailing through. My office was only 3 miles away, which made for a perfect bike ride to start and finish the work day. The weather was just great, just absolutely great.

Maybe that's part of the reason it's so easy to find all these old cars on the streets on Alameda. There's not alot of weather related wear-n-tear that's going to happen. It's also a pretty small island (what, maybe 8 miles long, 3 miles wide???) with quite a few neighborhood shopping areas, so it's very easy to get by without alot of driving... Dang, I miss it... :-)
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Just as Patricio stated, I too believed Alameda was an odd and some what boring place to live growing up but now as an adult I've grown to appreciate its history, the classic cars, an abundance of Victorian homes and quirks. I once read that Alameda has more Victorian homes than San Francisco, but you can correct me on that if I'm wrong. Alameda has changed a lot over the years, good changes, but it still retains its small, humbling, and quirky town feel.
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This brings back memories of living in Alameda. I always thought it was a strange place too. It was my favorite place I lived in the Bay Area. The entire island has the mood of a Jim Jarmusch film. I had a mentally retarded neighbor who talked to dogs. I'd attempt to talk to him as I ate the oranges off my tree in the front yard, but he only talked to dogs. I also remember the giant sea lion that washed up on shore on Crown Beach state park. He was there for days, just rotting and bloating in the sun. There was a Thai restaraunt that must have been made for midgets, as the ceilings were about 5 feet tall. And the waffle shop was fantastic, best waffles ever. It's a strange place, Alameda.
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