San Gabriel, California

San Gabriel /sæn ˈɡbriəl/ is a city in Los Angeles County, California. It is named after the Mission San Gabriel Arcángel (which in turn was named for Archangel Gabriel), founded by Saint Junípero Serra. The city grew outward from the mission and in 1852 became the original township of Los Angeles County. San Gabriel was incorporated in 1913. The city's motto is "A city with a Mission" and it is often called the "Birthplace" of the Los Angeles metropolitan area. At the 2010 census, the population was 39,718.

San Gabriel
City of San Gabriel



"City With A Mission!"
Location of San Gabriel in Los Angeles County, California
San Gabriel
Location in the contiguous United States
Coordinates: 34°6′10.14″N 118°5′58.89″W
Country United States
State California
County Los Angeles
IncorporatedApril 24, 1913[1]
Named forArchangel Gabriel
  City council[2]Juli Costanzo
Chin Ho Liao
John R. Harrington
Denise Menchaca (vice-mayor)
Jason Pu (mayor)
  City managerMark Lazzaretto[3]
  Total4.15 sq mi (10.74 km2)
  Land4.14 sq mi (10.73 km2)
  Water0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)  0.02%
Elevation420 ft (128 m)
  Density9,747.65/sq mi (3,763.96/km2)
Time zoneUTC-8 (Pacific Time Zone)
  Summer (DST)UTC-7 (PDT)
ZIP codes
91775, 91776, 91778[8]
Area code626[9]
FIPS code06-67042
GNIS feature IDs1656614, 2411787
San Gabriel, California
Traditional Chinese聖蓋博市
Simplified Chinese圣盖博市


Prior to the arrival of the Spanish to Alta California, the area that is now San Gabriel was inhabited by the Tongva Native Americans, whom the Spanish called the Gabrieleño. The Tongva name for the San Gabriel region has been reconstructed as Shevaa.[10]

Today a center for culture and art, the Mission San Gabriel Arcángel (named for Archangel Gabriel), founded by Father Junipero Serra, is the fourth of twenty-one California Missions, and is known as the "Pride of the California Missions."[11]

The Mission San Gabriel Arcángel served a pivotal role in the colonial Spanish society, with many of the area's first Mexican settlers being baptized at the mission, including future governor Pio Pico, who was born in 1801 at the mission and baptized there the same year. He was appointed as California's governor twice, serving briefly in 1832 and again from 1845 through the Mexican–American War. Later in life, he was elected as a Los Angeles City councilman.[12] The city of Pico Rivera was named to honor him as the last governor of California to be born in Mexico.[13]

In 1853, a company of Army Engineers, which included the geologist William P. Blake, passed by the mission in search of the best route for an intercontinental railroad. Blake observed that the once great vineyards had fallen into wild disarray. Fences were in disrepair and animals roamed freely through the property. But the mission bells were ringing and the church was still in use. Blake predicted, "I believe that when the adaptation of that portion of California to the culture of the grape and the manufacture of wine becomes known and appreciated, the state will become celebrated not only for its gold and grain, but (also) for its fruits and wines."[14]

In the first United States census made in California in 1860, 586 people lived in the San Gabriel township, an area encompassing the mission lands and several adjacent ranchos stretching north to what is now Pasadena. By 1870, the population had shrunk to 436.[15][16] By the time of General Law Incorporation on April 24, 1913, the city's population had grown to 1,500.[14]


San Gabriel is located at 34°5′39″N 118°5′54″W (34.094176, −118.098449).[17]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.1 square miles (11 km2), virtually all of it land.

The city is bordered on the north by San Marino, on the east by Temple City and Rosemead, to the south by Rosemead and to the west by Alhambra.


This region experiences warm (but not hot) and dry summers, with no average monthly temperatures above 71.6 °F. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, San Gabriel has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, abbreviated "Csb" on climate maps.[18]

Climate data for San Gabriel, California
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 94
Average high °F (°C) 67.2
Average low °F (°C) 44.9
Record low °F (°C) 22
Average precipitation inches (mm) 3.68
Source: The Weather Channel[19]


Historical population
Est. 201840,335[7]1.6%
U.S. Decennial Census[20]


The 2010 United States Census[21] reported that San Gabriel had a population of 39,718. The population density was 9,581.5 people per square mile (3,699.4/km2). The racial makeup of San Gabriel was 24,091 (60.7%) Asian, 10,076 (25.4%) White (11.4% Non-Hispanic White), 388 (1.0%) African American, 220 (0.6%) Native American, 43 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 3,762 (9.5%) from other races, and 1,138 (2.9%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 10,189 persons (25.7%).

The Census reported that 39,266 people (98.9% of the population) lived in households, 34 (0.1%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 418 (1.1%) were institutionalized.

There were 12,542 households, out of which 4,542 (36.2%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 6,668 (53.2%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 1,961 (15.6%) had a female householder with no husband present, 965 (7.7%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 481 (3.8%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 76 (0.6%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 2,121 households (16.9%) were made up of individuals and 800 (6.4%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.13. There were 9,594 families (76.5% of all households); the average family size was 3.47.

The population was spread out with 7,866 people (19.8%) under the age of 18, 3,555 people (9.0%) aged 18 to 24, 11,335 people (28.5%) aged 25 to 44, 11,388 people (28.7%) aged 45 to 64, and 5,574 people (14.0%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40.3 years. For every 100 females, there were 93.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.6 males.

There were 13,237 housing units at an average density of 3,193.3 per square mile (1,232.9/km2), of which 6,168 (49.2%) were owner-occupied, and 6,374 (50.8%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.0%; the rental vacancy rate was 5.7%. 19,974 people (50.3% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 19,292 people (48.6%) lived in rental housing units.

According to the 2010 United States Census, San Gabriel had a median household income of $56,388, with 13.3% of the population living below the federal poverty line.


As of the census[22] of 2000, there were 39,804 people, 12,587 households, and 9,566 families residing in the city. The population density was 9,639.3 inhabitants per square mile (3,721.2/km2). There were 12,909 housing units at an average density of 3,126.2 per square mile (1,206.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 33.40% White, 1.06% African American, 0.83% Native American, 48.91% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, 12.36% from other races, and 3.34% from two or more races. Those identifying as Hispanic or Latino (of any race) were 30.71% of the population.

There were 12,587 households out of which 35.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.1% were married couples living together, 15.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.0% were non-families. 18.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.10 and the average family size was 3.52.

In the city, the population was spread out with 23.5% under the age of 18, 8.6% from 18 to 24, 33.3% from 25 to 44, 21.1% from 45 to 64, and 13.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females, there were 92.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $56,720, and the median income The per capita income for the city was $24,816. About 9.5% of families and 12.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.4% of those under age 18 and 9.5% of those age 65 or over.

Ethnic culture

The city boasts a mixture of Asian, European, and North American cultures.[23] Second- and third-generation Chinese Americans patronize its diverse array of stores and eateries.[24] There is the 12-acre "San Gabriel Square" mall, sometimes referred to as the "Chinese Disneyland".[23] It was also nicknamed by the Los Angeles Times as "the great mall of China."[25][26] This stretch of exotic Chinese shops and bold architecture, with roofs of Spanish-style tile, is the model for the new ethnoburbs recently recognized in places like Las Vegas and Houston.[23] The conglomeration of restaurants and cafes, shops, markets, hair and nail salons, Asian video stores, health services, department stores, plus an extensive jewelry mart, provides 'something for everyone', from purchasing an expensive diamond and shopping for designer suits, to buying soy milk or a travel package to Las Vegas or China.[23]

These were the ten neighborhoods in Los Angeles County with the largest percentage of Asian residents, according to the 2000 census:[27]

  1. Chinatown, 70.6%
  2. Monterey Park, 61.1%
  3. Cerritos, 58.3%
  4. Walnut, 56.2%
  5. Rowland Heights, 51.7%
  6. San Gabriel, 48.9%
  7. Rosemead, 48.6%
  8. Alhambra, 47.2%
  9. San Marino, 46.8%
  10. Arcadia, 45.4%

Government and infrastructure

In the state legislature San Gabriel is located in the 21st Senate District, represented by Democrat Carol Liu, and in the 49th Assembly District, represented by Democrat Mike Eng.

In the United States House of Representatives, San Gabriel is in California's 27th congressional district, represented by Democrat Judy Chu.[28]

City government

Five Councilmembers are elected by the voters to serve a four-year term. The Mayor is appointed annually by the Council in a rotation among its members. The City Council is also the Redevelopment Agency Board of Directors.

The city's first Chinese American mayor was Chi Mui in 2006. He symbolized San Gabriel's rise as the new center of the region's Chinese community. He died of cancer three months later.[24] Mui was replaced by Albert Y. M. Huang, who served as mayor during his term. Huang submitted his resignation October 19, 2010 following a late-night domestic dispute with his girlfriend and subsequent arrest. Huang has since been cleared of all charges.[29]

City services

San Gabriel won a record $4.6 million park grant that will fund San Gabriel's first new park in this century, for the proposed Marshall Community Park project. This the first time a joint venture between the City and Garvey School District has been planned.[30]

  • Adult Recreation Center and Senior Center, 324 South Mission Drive
  • Bovard-Wilson-Hayes House and Jail
  • Grapevine Park and Arbor, 324 South Mission Drive
  • Parks Office, The Parks and Recreation Department offers an after school sports program and a summer playground program for San Gabriel youth. Along with these programs, the Department provides a variety of trips and special events throughout the year for youth of all ages.
  • San Gabriel Historical Association
  • San Gabriel Mission Playhouse
  • Smith Park and Pool, 232 West Broadway,
  • Vincent Lugo Park, Corner of Wells and Ramona Streets

County services

The Los Angeles County Department of Health Services operates the Monrovia Health Center in Monrovia, serving San Gabriel.[31]


Arrest of Mayor Albert Huang

On Friday October 15, 2010, Mayor Albert Y.M. Huang was arrested on suspicion of battery, robbery and assault, two felonies and a misdemeanor. He was released on $100,000 bail. He resigned from the office of Mayor and from the council on October 19, 2010, at the city council meeting that evening. He declared his innocence even though he was observed driving away from the scene of the altercation at approximately 45 mph, with a woman clinging to his car.[32][33] According to the police, a security guard from a nearby business saw Huang and the female subject fighting and detained them until police could arrive.[34] Huang resigned after he was arrested and posted bail.[35] Huang has since been cleared of all charges.[36]

Residency challenge against Councilman-elect Chin Ho Liao

In 2013, Council member-elect Chin Ho Liao threatened to file a lawsuit with the City Council alleging that Liao was not a residing citizen of San Gabriel, thus being ineligible to serve on the council. Liao, an unsuccessful candidate for office in 2011, was one of three candidates duly elected on March 5 (one re-elected) and subsequently defeated one of the two incumbent council members.

The council, which included both the said outgoing incumbents, voted not to seat Liao due to a residency challenge made by resident Fred Paine. Paine alleged that Liao's tax returns, health records and other paperwork did not show that Liao had lived within San Gabriel's city limits prior to the election. Liao in response provided evidence that he was living in an apartment within city limits since November 2012 and was then searching for a permanent home in San Gabriel at the time of his campaign. Hearings were held on April 30, with Liao receiving the backing of U.S. Congresswoman Judy Chu, state senator Ed Hernandez, and state assemblyman Ed Chau.

The challenge was rejected by the city council on May 6 by a 3-1 vote. with Mayor Sawkins, Councilmembers Costanzo and Pu voting to reject the residency challenge, and Councilmember Harrington being the sole vote sustaining it. Liao was sworn in the following day.[37][38][39]


San Gabriel community news are covered by the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, a paid daily newspaper, as well as by Mid-Valley News and San Gabriel Sun, which are community weeklies.


Top employers

According to the City's 2014 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city are:[40]

# Employer # of Employees
1 San Gabriel Valley Medical Center 1019
2 99 Ranch Market 175
3 San Gabriel Superstore 130
4 Five Star Seafood Restaurant 129
5 Ivy Creek Healthcare and Wellness Center 119
6 SGV HealthCare Inc. 116
8 Tender Care Home Health 111
9 Hawaii Supermarket 103
10 San Gabriel Country Club 102
12 168 Market 95
13 Mission Lodge Sanitaruim 88
15 Marco's Auto Body, Inc. 71


San Gabriel is currently served by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

In 2008, voters approved the measure, proposition 1A for the California High Speed Rail Project from San Diego to San Francisco.[41] The project will be constructed in two segments. The San Francisco to Los Angeles/Anaheim project is scheduled to be built first, at a cost of $43 billion, with a completion date in 2029.[41] The second phase of the proposed railway, from Los Angeles to stations in San Diego will not begin construction until after phase one is completed. The California High-Speed Rail Authority is responsible for planning, designing, and building the system.

Conceptually, the voters were very enthusiastic about a high speed railway. The reality of the possibility that it could impact their neighborhood and their homes is being met with steadfast disapproval. When the California High-Speed Rail Authority recently met with the city councils and residents of San Gabriel, El Monte, Rosemead[42] and Alhambra, to discuss the four proposed routes for phase two, the members of the three city councils expressed that residents were very concerned that the railway could possibly end up in their backyards.[41] Mayor David Gutierrez said "We made a promise to the community that the city of San Gabriel will never allow anything like this to happen if there is any consideration that people might lose their home."[41] No decisions will be made until environmental impact and evaluation of the various proposed routes are completed in 2014.[41] Alhambra city councilwoman, Jessica Keating, maintained that city representatives, who had initially appeared to agree with the proposal, admitted they were "caught asleep at the wheel."[42]


The city of San Gabriel is served by the San Gabriel Unified School District. They state: "It is the mission of the San Gabriel School District, in partnership with the Community, to prepare its students for their future as productive citizens and lifelong learners..."[43] The 2009 API school reports has recognized the San Gabriel Unified school district as one of the top school districts in California. Gabrielino High School consistently ranks as one of the highest achieving schools, as it ranks with some of the highest scores possible among public high schools in California.[44]

Elementary schools

There are five public elementary schools in San Gabriel, all of which are named after former Presidents:

Calvin Coolidge Elementary School.
McKinley Elementary School
Roosevelt Elementary School
Washington Elementary School
Wilson Elementary School

Each of its public schools have been honoured as a California Distinguished School.[45] Two other elementary schools exist within the city limits, Dewey Elementary, and Marshall Elementary, are operated by the Garvey School District, in the southern portion of San Gabriel.

Middle school

Jefferson Middle School is located in the San Gabriel Unified School District. In 1968 the school was converted to the only intermediate school in the elementary school district with sixth, seventh and eighth grade students. Jefferson became part of the San Gabriel Unified School District in 1993-94. The five K-5 elementary schools feed into the middle school. Jefferson is recognized as a California Distinguished School.[46]

High schools

Gabrielino High School has been named by US News and World Report as one of "America's Best Public High Schools". This puts it in the top 2.8% of the schools in the nation.[47]

Del Mar High School, which opened in September 2010, is a newly built alternative school, "Where Second Chances Happen".[48]

San Gabriel High School is located in the Alhambra Unified School District, which serves residents from eastern Alhambra, southern Rosemead, and a portion of San Gabriel.

San Gabriel Mission High School, a Catholic, private, all girls high school, grades 9-12. It was named after and is located in the same block as the historical Mission San Gabriel Arcángel.

Private schools

There are several private schools in the City of San Gabriel including:

Saint Anthony School, Grades Pre-K through 8th. A Tradition of Excellence in Catholic education since 1948.[49]
San Gabriel Mission Elementary School[50]
San Gabriel Academy is a coeducational Seventh-day Adventist college preparatory school, grades K-12.[51]
Clairbourn School is a coeducational preparatory day school, pre-K through 8th grade in an environment harmonious with the teachings of Christian Science.[52]
Little Flower Montessori School, Grades Pre-K through 5th.
San Gabriel Christian School-- Is an accredited member of the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). The school provides a strong Christian education program for over 600 students in grades kindergarten through eighth grade.[53]

Famous natives and notable residents

Sister cities

See also


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  2. "City Council". San Gabriel, CA. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  3. "Office of the City Manager". San Gabriel, CA. Retrieved June 21, 2019.
  4. "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 28, 2017.
  5. "San Gabriel". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  6. "San Gabriel (city) QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved April 16, 2015.
  7. "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved July 20, 2019.<
  8. "USPS - ZIP Code Lookup - Find a ZIP+ 4 Code By City Results". Retrieved January 18, 2007.
  9. "Number Administration System - NPA and City/Town Search Results". Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved January 18, 2007.
  10. Munro, Pamela, et al. Yaara' Shiraaw'ax 'Eyooshiraaw'a. Now You're Speaking Our Language: Gabrielino/Tongva/Fernandeño. 2008.
  11. "City of San Gabriel, California, Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, Year ended June 30, 2009" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on June 21, 2011. Retrieved November 27, 2010.
  12. "Pio Pico - Last Governor of Mexican California".
  13. "Frequently Asked Questions: Pico Rivera". County of Los Angeles Public Library. Archived from the original on November 21, 2010. Retrieved November 26, 2010.
  14. Gally, Sid (March 9, 2010). "Past on Parade: What was the San Gabriel Valley like in 1853?". Pasadena Star-News. Retrieved August 3, 2010.
  15. Paul R. Spitzzeri (Fall 2007). "What a Difference a Decade Makes: Ethnic and Racial Demographic Change in Los Angeles County during the 1860s" (PDF). Branding Iron.
  16. U.S. Census Bureau. "Population of the United States in 1860: California" (PDF).
  17. "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
  18. "San Gabriel, California Köppen Climate Classification (Weatherbase)". Weatherbase.
  19. "Monthly Averages for San Gabriel, California". Retrieved July 6, 2018.
  20. "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  21. "2010 Census Interactive Population Search: CA - San Gabriel city". U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on November 12, 2014. Retrieved July 12, 2014.
  22. "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  23. "City of San Gabriel". Archived from the original on May 3, 2011.
  24. Pierson, David (March 31, 2006). "Dragon Roars in San Gabriel". Los Angeles Times.
  25. Jonathan Gold and Laurie Ochoa, "Cook's Walks: The Great Mall of China", Los Angeles Times, November 12, 1992.
  26. "Welcome To The San Gabriel Square".
  27. "Asian", Mapping L.A., Los Angeles Times
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  30. "San Gabriel, CA - Official Website | Official Website".
  31. "Monrovia Health Center." Los Angeles County Department of Health Services. Retrieved on March 27, 2010.
  32. "San Gabriel Mayor Huang arrested on suspicion of assault, robbery". October 15, 2010.
  33. KCal news, October 19, 2010.
  34. "San Gabriel mayor arrested for alleged robbery, assault, battery".
  35. "San Gabriel Mayor Albert Y.M. Huang Resigns After Purse-Snatching Arrest". The Huffington Post. October 19, 2010. Archived from the original on October 31, 2010. Retrieved November 9, 2010.
  36. "Early election results for San Gabriel, La Ca?ada Flintridge, Rosemead and Los Angeles". March 8, 2011.
  37. Radio, Southern California Public (May 6, 2013). "San Gabriel City Council decides to seat councilman-elect".
  38. Shyong, Frank (May 7, 2013). "San Gabriel votes to seat councilman-elect after residency hearings". Los Angeles Times.
  39. "San Gabriel Council votes to seat councilmember-elect after two-month delay, Pasadena Star News. 7 May 2013".
  40. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on September 24, 2015. Retrieved August 28, 2015.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  41. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on March 13, 2012. Retrieved November 28, 2010.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  42. "Residents Oppose HighSpeed Railway in Alhambra Monday Night". San Marino Tribune.
  43. "San Gabriel Unified School District".
  44. "Gabrielino High School: Best High Schools -".
  45. "San Gabriel Unified School District Listing". Retrieved November 27, 2010.
  46. "Jefferson Middle School". Retrieved August 3, 2010.
  47. "Gabrielino High School - Homepage". Retrieved August 3, 2010.
  48. "Del Mar High School, Daly Announcements". Retrieved November 27, 2010.
  49. "Saint Anthony Catholic School. A Tradition of Excellence Since 1948". Retrieved November 27, 2010.
  50. "San Gabriel Mission High School homepage". Archived from the original on November 30, 2010. Retrieved November 27, 2010.
  51. "Mission". Archived from the original on July 27, 2011. Retrieved November 27, 2010.
  52. "School Overview". Archived from the original on July 22, 2012. Retrieved November 27, 2010.
  53. "Welcome to San Gabriel Christian School". Retrieved November 27, 2010.
  54. "McConnell picks baseball's best ever". February 17, 2009.
  55. "Bill Mumy Biography (1954-)".
  56. "Tex Schramm Is Dead at 83; Builder of 'America's Team".
  57. "Joanna Wang Lyrics".
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