Glen Park, once known as Lil' Italy, but now dubbed Glen Parco by local Italians and non-Italians alike, is one the most populous neighborhood in the city of Los Santos. It is one of the last enclaves for Italian-Americans in Los Santos.
The zip code of Glen Park is 90026.
Early Founding of Little ItalyEdit
Glen Park. as it is called today, was established in the early 1900’s, when Italians immigrated from their homeland or moved in from other big cities dotted around the United States. At first, the area was a bit empty, dull and of course, dirty, compared to nowadays. The neighbourhood was separated in two, North Glen and South Glen. The northern part of the area being the better looking one, having a handful of houses situated just south of Broadway East from the Mulholland Intersection. Despite being able to afford traditional homes, the resident of North Glen weren't that well off, compared to their Southern neighbors. While the residents of the South dwelt in slummish conditions, those in the North only pretended to be affluent as most families lived in crowded less than prosperous condition all around the neighborhood.
By the 1920s, the area was almost fully inhabited by Italian-Americans, with around 40% of them being Sicilian heritage. Most residents communted across Los Santos for work, with a majority of teh men settling for blue-collar jobs. Work on the docks, construction, and many factory jobs were present to keep the immigrants satisfied. Some however, were lucky enough to establish their own business. Most of these being in the form of a local foodstands or street-side vending nature. Over the years these wholesalers, developed enough capita to start little cornerstores and other such enterprises. Things were looking promising for the freelancing Italian-Americans.
The Depression Hits HomeEdit
It was the early 1930's. Glen Parco then just simply known as Little Italy, experience a surge in criminality. While already catering to one of the most heinous criminal group in the city, the cultural hotspot, the neighborhood began to bear the brunt of the Cosa Nostra's reign. With such a high population, the prospect of making lucrative amounts of money, and the sheer shortage of traditional jobs; alot of young Italian-Americans turned to organized crime.
In the late-1940’s, Antonio Perticone, owner of Perticone Construction began set up a building plan which would replace the dated ghetto of the southern part of the Parco. He replaced it with the Perticone Tenements, able to name it after himself due to a grant from the government to build the housing area. It became one of the first government sponsored (but not maintained) housing projects.
The late 40's and early 50's were a time for renewal. Italian-American's were just becoming socially aceptable, as the anti-Italian sentiment of Los Santos died down. As this decade-long front against Italian-American softened, they were able to rise out of the traditional jobs they once held. As the first modern corporations began to flourish so did the Italian-Americans seeking a place in the white collar workforce. And soon the stereotype of the greasy, hard labour, criminality involved, dago began to be placed upon the backburner.
The Swingin' SixtiesEdit
During the early 1960’s, the Upper Eastside, which the neighborhood resides in began to feel the results of diverse immigration. African-Americans and Latinos from the Lower Eastside began to move north. This resulted in a "clash of cultures" between the resident white lower class; such as the Irish, Italians, Polish, Jews etc and these other non-white groups. In 1967, when the RICO act was enacted, many prominent ’businessmen’ who lived and had businesses in Glen Parco were arrested, indicted and jailed.
In 1969, another goverment project was established. Mayor George Herbert Glen, decided to build a sizable recreation park right in the middle of Lil' Italy. This was thought by some to be a clandestine way of making surveillance of the local La Cosa Nostra easier upon law enforcement. However, the neighborhood deemed a Mafia stronghold responded by moving their center of business to the southern part of the neighborhood.
Years after completion, most of the areas businesses moved to a large plaza between the Perticone Tenements. This area is now referred to by locals Italian Market. It is where most of the day-to-day commerce of the neighborhood is carried out. And where a large population of local residents spend their time.
The New Wave of the Modern EraEdit
In the mid 80’s a lot of the places in the neigbourhood were renovated, mainly the houses in the North-Glen area and also a new appartment complex called the [[Bahama Apartments]] was built to the southern-east part of the Glen Parco. Also in 1993, a large recreational skatepark was errected south end of the neighbourhood.
In the beginning of the new millenium, the magazine LS Life,Glen Parco was ranked 5th in the areas of Los Santos as a place to live, mainly getting praised for a being a quiet place to live at, healthy lifestyle, mainly friendly people, great jobs and more of that type. The neighbourhood is rumoured to home around 15000 people, most in the South-Glen appartment complexes.
Landmarks & Businesses of the AreaEdit
Bahama Apartments - Apartment complex to the southeast of the neighborhood.
Glen Park - The actual park in the middle of the neighborhood.
Southpark Mall - The string of stores sitting above the Italian Market
Park Avenue Apartments - Housing complex along the main southern road of the Paro
Italian Market - The somewhat hidden cluster of locally owned/operated Italian-themed shops.