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Union Station Waiting Hall Seats (2014)

A row of 1930s-vintage seats in the passenger waiting hall at Los Angeles Union Station (originally the Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal). Surrounding the seats are walls decorated with the geometric patterns typical of the Art Deco style.

The seats are empty because of an aggressive campaign begun in 2013 to keep homeless people out of the waiting hall. Most of the seats in the hall are roped off, with the remaining ones restricted to holders of valid tickets for the few Amtrak trains that serve Los Angeles. Officials of the Metropolitan Transit Authority, which owns Union Station, seem to take arrogant pride in ignoring the many complaints that the campaign needlessly interferes with the rights of the non-homeless public to enjoy what is supposedly a public place. But then, the restrictions made it possible for me take this pristine picture of the classic Art Deco accouterments.


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