In the 19th century, when Downtown was little more than a cluster of frame and adobe buildings near the railroad depot at First Street, Central Avenue was called Railroad Avenue, acting as the heart of the bustling urban area. Now, in the 21st century, the commercial: businesses buildings from the railroad era have long since passed away, but the railroad itself remains as a memento of that heady time. The railway bridge spans overhead, bisecting the street, the occasional clatter of passing trains sending pedestrians scurrying to their destinations.
The buildings in this area are primarily commercial: businesses, bars, and restaurants. Two of Central Avenue's original 1920s skyscrapers, the old First National Bank Building and the Sunshine Building, the remaining examples of Renaissance style business architecture, proudly show off their medallions, swags and pilasters. A nearby firehouse creates its own brand of noise, as fire engines zoom out, their sirens going full blast.
Second Street bisects Central here, heading north.