This blog explores the history of Phoenix, Arizona and a little bit of Los Angeles and San Francisco, California.

Ted's Plaza, Glendale, Arizona

I've lived in Glendale, Arizona for over twenty years, and have driven back and forth on Olive Avenue more times than I can count. And if you're a neighbor of mine, not far from Glendale Community College, you have driven past Ted's Plaza, which is on 47th Avenue.

If you've never seen it, that's not surprising. It tends to be one of those "invisible" things that I see, and often joke about. Yes, something is definitely wrong with me, because I can see Ted's Plaza.

Whatever it is, being "right-brained" or being a Graphic Designer, or a frustrated architect, I see a lot of things that really aren't all that important, like the names of shopping centers. And no, I don't tell people to meet me at Ted's Plaza, unless I'm joking. It's the corner with the Circle K. Now that I'm looking more carefully at the sign, there's a Mexican Food place I've never gone to. Gotta try that!

I have no idea how old the sign is, but it's probably from the 1960s*. Ted's Plaza would have been the name of an empty shopping center before any of the tenants moved in. That's how it works - a shopping center is built, given a catchy name (like Ted's!) and then laundromats, barbers, and convenience stores move it. Sometimes the signs stay (like this one, which actually looks like it's been changed - did it used to be something other than Ted's?) and sometimes the signs go away. Presumably somewhere in the County Recorders office is a form with the name on it, just to make it all legal.

Yeah, I notice this kind of stuff. If you ask me if it makes it any easier for me to go shopping, and find stuff, I'd have to say no. But it makes it so much more interesting to me!

*Update: I took a look at Historic Aerials and it looks like it was built in the 1970s. Before 1970s, there was nothing there but farmland.

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