Ringing in Change: Downtown’s New 738 Area Code Sparks Debate

DTLA weekly social media

Looks like downtown Los Angeles is headed for yet another shake-up.

As reported by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), the new area code 738 is about to join the list as an “overlay” of the existing area codes 213 and 323.

Hold onto your Frenchies, Downtown. As news made the airwaves, neighbors took to social media to express their concerns. Between doomsday predictions and rationalizing the change, came a list of triple-digs stemming from numerology to nods to cannabis culture. Instead of 738, comments insisted the overlay area code would best rep’s DTLA if it were changed to one of the following:

111 – The Symbolic Sign of Hope

This symbolic sign of new opportunities and growth potential, good luck, and achievement could mean that having 111 in front of any telephone number could enhance DTLA’s image and re-create a sense of pride and optimism regarding downtown’s development, inspiring residents and businesses to strive for greater success.

222 – The Reflective Gateway

If 738 doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, consider the inner workings of 222, which  could give Downtown Los Angeles an opportunity to embrace the number’s powerful meaning of self-reflection. As DTLA embodies contrasts and convergences, within its moments of quiet contemplation, this overlaying area code for DTLA, could help DTLA find itself, guiding residents, businesses, and visitors toward deeper understanding and connection.

420 – Don’t Worry, Be Happy!

420 – Beyond its associations with cannabis culture, leisure, and celebration, 420 could represent a state of equilibrium and stability, for downtown, fostering honest communication with an elevated meaning of what it means to be from LA. In downtown, area code 420 would go well with our immense culinary scene. We do have some munchies.  What better place to pass a bowl of veggies at the dinner table? “Excuse me while I step outside, 420 is calling.”

3 – 6s – Just Diabolical

The mark of the beast was also suggested, perhaps in a darkly comedic confession of the fears and apprehensions surrounding DTLA, a special brew of wicked parking woes, possessed individuals, and cold-hearted developments lurking in the shadows of gentrification.

911 – Emergency 

LOL, who said this? In numerology, 911 speaks to the tremendous potential to achieve anything, yet with 911 calls circulating around the clock, the pun called attention to our most dire struggles in downtown LA and our daily need to overcome them. Shout out to our emergency responders. 

999 – The Cosmic Conclusion

The notion of adopting 999 emerged in the comments as a cosmic sign of closure and enlightenment. Symbolizing an end to one chapter and the beginning of another, 999 injected a hint of just how much Downtiwn has changed.

In time, those with 213 may come to symbolize the original inhabitants of LA, the OGs, so to speak, or those who haven’t set up new cell phone service after November 2024. That is when the new area code will be introduced to DTLA, Alhambra, Bell, Bell Gardens, Beverly Hills, Commerce, Cudahy, Glendale, Hawthorne, Huntington Park, Inglewood, Lynwood, Maywood, Montebello, Monterey Park, Pasadena, Rosemead, South Gate, South Pasadena, Vernon, West Hollywood, and unincorporated portions of Los Angeles County, according to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC).

Author: Hanny Playa

Lover of all things music. Seeker of the highest frequency. When I’m not writing or attending concerts I’m marching to the beat of a different drum.