Tuesday, March 18, 2008
GM Futurliner in Van Nuys
In 1994 my Friend Grant and I spotted this unusual vehicle on a side street off of Vanowen St. between Havenhurst and Balboa Blvd. Grant told me he had previously seen the vehicle on Ventura Blvd. He knew it was from a world's fair but was not sure which one. That night I did some research and discovered it was from the 1939 New York World's Fair. It struck a chord with me because my dad had gone to that fair and had occasionally talked about it. He might had seen this actual bus.
I eventually put the photographs away and forgot about them until last week when I rediscovered the pictures and scanned them. This time I charged into the internet to look for more information. I found that GM made 12 of these traveling display buses for the 1939 World's Fair. I found many websites with information. Some spoke of two era's of buses, one from 1940 to 1952 and another era from 1953 to 1956. It was not clear if the same buses were used or if there was a second generation of buses. One website mentioned that 9 of the buses remain in various states of recondition. I believe the bus in our picture does belong to a gentleman from Los Angeles. Two buses were credited to California. According to the article the other bus did not arrive in California until about 1999. One other website had a picture of this same bus and the writer mentioned he too had seen the bus on Ventura Blvd.
My Flickr page has one additional picture of the front of this Futurliner. If anyone has any additional information I would love to hear from you.