Curating the City: Legacy Business | Los Angeles Conservancy
The 1933 Group brings Formosa Café in West Hollywood back to life. Photo by Adrian Scott Fine/L.A. Conservancy.

Keeping ‘Mom and Pop’

Longstanding businesses found in neighborhoods across Los Angeles County add to our rich history and culture.

Whether it’s the family-owned bakery down the street, the dry cleaners locals swear by, or the restaurant where your husband proposed, these familiar and beloved places are our legacy businesses.

They’re a huge part of what makes each of our neighborhoods and communities unique, and it’s time to show them some love.

The Conservancy launched the Legacy Business Initiative in November 2019 to raise awareness of the importance of legacy businesses throughout Los Angeles County. We aim to broaden awareness of these places and share more about the County’s history by highlighting the unique places and stories associated with longtime establishments. We will also identify some of the pressures that come with running a longtime business and highlight strategies that communities have created to help. 

We hope this microsite brings a greater understanding of the important role legacy businesses play in our neighborhoods and the challenges they face

What Is a Legacy Business?

A legacy business is a longtime business that typically has been around for over twenty-five years and serves as a mainstay of a neighborhood.

What if a long-term business changes ownership—is it still a legacy business? Not always, especially if a new owner provides a completely new use, goods, or services that are unrelated to the longstanding business that closed or moved elsewhere.

What defines a legacy business is not only its longevity but also its contribution to the neighborhood’s identity, creating a sense of place and belonging for neighbors and customers.    

The content on this microsite is by no means exhaustive and will evolve and grow over time. Help us learn more about the longtime businesses you love in your neighborhood. Is there a legacy business that we should know about? Email M. Rosalind Sagara at rsagara@laconservancy.org with information about the business' history and significance.

We welcome your feedback and look forward to hearing from you!