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In 2005, Reies Flores and Arturo Romo-Santillano were substitute teachers at Franklin High School in Highland Park. Romo, an artist, and Flores, who shepherded student garden projects, grew up in Northeast L.A. Seeking to engage students with their place in the city, they created the Franklin Mural Project. This neighborhood narrative, layered on four floors by the school entrance, began before “gentrification” became the hot word associated with the area. To date, 80 students have collaborated. It's not finished. The first floor is complete, and the second — completion goal 2017 — is under way. “We'll finish the fourth when we're 70,” Flores jokes. The four floors plan to depict the living Tongva legacy, Mission-era California, boomtown Los Angeles, postwar industrialization, white flight, the Chicano movement, 1980s immigration and futures yet to be seen. —Maryam Hosseinzadeh

820 N. Avenue 54, Highland Park, 90042. (323) 550-2000, franklinhs-lausd-ca.schoolloop.com.

LA Weekly