Introduction to Pico Rivera, California
The California city of Pico Rivera is located in southeastern Los Angeles County, on the eastern edge of the Los Angeles basin and on the southern edge of the San Gabriel Valley. Situated only 12 miles southeast of Los Angeles, Pico Rivera is accessible to Interstates I-605 (San Gabriel Freeway), I-5 (Santa Ana Freeway), and I-60 (Pomona Freeway). The city is also within a thirty minute drive from Los Angeles International, Ontario, and John Wayne airports.
Pico Rivera traces its roots to the 1870s when the separate communities of Pico (named for Pío Pico, former governor of California) and Rivera resulted from the completion of rail lines by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe and Union Pacific railroads. During the first four decades of the 20th century, these two country towns grew slowly in a rich agricultural atmosphere. Following the end of World War II, the sudden demand for housing attracted subdividers, who bought and cleared large parcels of land in the 1950s. The onset of new commercial enterprises, subdivisions, and young families filling the area drew the older neighborhoods of Pico and Rivera closer together. Leaders from both communities began to voice strong support for incorporation, and in 1958, the two communities were merged into the new City of Pico Rivera.
Pico Rivera Places of Interest
Pico Rivera has seven major neighborhood parks totaling more than 100 acres, as well as the Pico Rivera Municipal Golf Course, a lighted nine-hole executive course built in 1965. The Pico Rivera Sports Arena, built in 1979, is reputed to be the largest Mexican rodeo ring in the country. Approximately 25 shows are held at the facility every year. The Pico Rivera Centre for the Arts, which opened its doors in 1989, features a 1,000 square-foot space for gallery exhibits and classroom areas for fine art instruction. Its programs allow individuals to investigate all aspects of the arts including production, history, criticism and aesthetics. The Pico Rivera Historical Museum, housed in a circa-1887 train depot, chronicles the city's colorful past through its collection of photographs, documents and artifacts. The Pico Rivera Library, constructed in 1961, is the only circular library in the country. Its unique circular construction provides separate reading areas for children and adults.