Oil and Urbanization on the Pacific Coast: Ralph Bramel Lloyd and the Shaping of the Urban West tells the story of the impact of the Southern California oil industry on urban development in the West during the 20th Century.
Lloyd, who lived from 1875 to 1953, made millions from the development of the gigantic Ventura oil field, which happened to lay in part below the ranch that his father, Lewis Lloyd, bought in 1886. He invested vast sums in commercial real estate, most notably on the East Side of Portland, where the Lloyd Center opened in 1960 and the district bears his name.
I introduced Ralph Lloyd and the methods he deployed to deliver his building projects in my 2013 book, A Better Way to Build: A History of the Pankow Companies. Oil and Urbanization on the Pacific Coast explores Lloyd’s most important projects in greater detail. As such, it will interest architects, builders, developers, urban planners, and other construction and real estate professionals.
I began researching this book in 1998 and began writing it in 2013. Along the way, I presented my research at numerous conferences and in journal articles (listed on my Publications page). I am very excited to share this important story with a wide audience!