As usual, I can't be absolutely certain about the date of this photo, but I'm thinking it's probably around 1962. The buildings around Angels Flight have been razed by this time, but The Dome is still alive and well at the corner of Second and Grand (upper right), so I think this is a good ballpark guess.
Taken by me from the observation deck of City Hall during my visit on July 10, 2009. I have to say – when I first saw that block-square open pit at First and Broadway, I had mixed feelings about it, but now that I see the building that was there before (The California State Office Building?), I have to say the current open space is a significant improvement.
Photo by J Scott Shannon.
It's interesting to me to think that the old photo is from a time that is actually within my living memory. This Then & Now comparison illustrates pretty much exactly the extent to which downtown Los Angeles has changed in the short space of my own lifetime...