What makes an old car neighborhood?

I don’t know if a straightforward formula exists that can determine where exactly are all the neighborhoods that have streets dotted with cool old cars, but here are some definite trends in where someone is going to find concentrations of these vehicles. 

Why is it, for instance, that the East Village has orders of magnitude more old cars parked on the street than the Lower East Side?

As for my hometown, there was one neighborhood in particular that I could really rely upon to find some interesting car therein.

Just around the corner from that old Toyota Cressida I’ve found a Mustang Mach 1, a Plymouth Valiant, a Mercury Meteor, countless 80s Civics, a number of vintage Porsches, an early Corvette, and just about any sporty coupe made in the last 30 years.

One of my favorite cars from the neighborhood was this Edsel Ranger, built sometime between 1958 and 1960.

The owner was a bit of an Edsel collector and I was overjoyed to see it some years ago with my camera handy. In the days before I had some serious car encyclopedia-ism going on, I spotted this Edsel in the Wells Fargo parking lot downtown – I didn’t know what it was and it looked so wide – I had never seen a car that really made sense of the term ‘land yacht’, but this car seemed to have a hull completely of another piece to the cabin.

Since then I’ve taken pictures of the Edsel a few different times and it now exists on my harddrive as “the Edsel” in the same way that I know UC Davis as “the University.”

In any case, the owner of this Edsel certainly shares some qualities with her neighborhood residents, as I don’t think they all planned on having so many near-classics within a block or two of each other before they all moved in. Something in the neighborhood must be attracting a like group of people with the same tick that makes old car ownership make sense. I love going through other towns and cities and finding their old car neighborhoods. I found the right spots in Berlin, New York, and a couple towns in the Central Valley. I don’t know exactly what they all had in common, but it was nice to see the cars living together.

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1 Response to What makes an old car neighborhood?

  1. Pingback: 1995-1996 Chevrolet Caprice | Autofrei

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