LOS ANGELES (CBS) — The Hollywood sign was once an epic billboard promising homebuyers a tranquil lifestyle high above the congestion of Los Angeles below.

Almost a century later, the sign is the city’s most famous landmark and traffic in the hillside community boasts New York City-worthy gridlock.

Residents say tourists weren’t a problem until two years ago, when GPS and Internet maps started giving directions to the sign.

Now, scores of tourists pour into the neighborhood daily in rental cars and tour vans, causing safety hazards and headaches ranging from sheared off fire hydrants to fender-benders to blocked driveways, not to mention noise, trash and car exhaust at four main picture-taking vistas.

The succinct message recently painted on a dirt patch –“tourists go away” — sums up the sentiments of many residents.

The Hollywood sign was created in 1923. The letters stand 45-feet tall and stretch 350-feet long.

(© Copyright 2011 — The Associated Press contributed to this report. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (11)
  1. Not a tourist says:

    Poor rich people up in the hills. Sale your home worth a million plus and move then! I’m sure it’s annoying but go along with it or move.

  2. sat says:

    What they expect they move next to a world wide known sign. Its like moving next to$ Disneyland then complaining about the tourist.

  3. Silly Silly says:

    Okay, seriously…what do you expect moving next to one of the most epic signs in the world. It is like getting on the 405 and being surprised with traffic!!

  4. James says:

    The problem is that the closest access to the sign is in a residential area with some narrow streets. I think the city of Los Angeles should find a way to give tours that start from somewhere in Griffith Park, where there is more parking and easier access. The city could charge tourists $5 or $10 for access to a path to the sign where they could take their precious photos from the best vantage point.

  5. Miles says:

    Maybe they ought to knock down a few of those million dollar homes to put in a proper multiple-lane road to access the historic landmark. That’ll teach em to whine about it.

  6. Jack says:

    Now the Hollywood residents know how tourist feel when they come their country
    “Americans go away”

  7. kevin costner says:

    As long as the coloreds don’t come up here, that’s fine.

  8. John says:

    How is this even news? Was it a slow day or something?

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