Firestone Tire and Rubber Plant | Los Angeles Conservancy
Firestone Tire and Rubber Plant, "Building 2" on the corner of Firestone Boulevard and Santa Fe Avenue by Adrian Scott Fine/L.A. Conservancy

Firestone Tire and Rubber Plant

In 1927, construction began on Firestone Tire's first manufacturing facility outside of Akron, Ohio. The property, known as the Firestone Tire and Rubber Plant, South Gate Facility, was designed by architects Alec Curlett & Claud Beelman in the Italianate Mediterranean Revival style.

As Los Angeles's automobile and aerospace industries grew, so did the plant. Additions to the facility were constructed in 1929, 1942, 1951, and 1955. It's unknown if the original architects were retained for these additions. The Firestone Plant contributed greatly to the local economy by creating thousands of jobs. Along with BF Goodrich and Goodyear, Los Angeles became the country's second-largest rubber manufacturer after Akron, OH by the mid-twentieth century.

When the military-industrial complex in Southern California grew, Firestone expanded production to include a Guided Missile Division for manufacturing the Corporal guided missile and related ground handling equipment. 

In the 1970s, the company was sold to an offshore corporation, and soon after the South Gate facility closed in 1980.

In 2009, SWCA Environmental Consultants identified the facility as a California Register of Historical Resources eligible historic district. When identified the historic district encompassed four buildings, three of which were eligible for individual listing.

Currently, the property is occupied by the South Gate Educational Center, only "Building 2" still stands at the corner of Firestone Boulevard and Santa Fe Avenue. 

Photo by Alex Alvarez, Rockefeller Kempel Architects and Tara Wujcik, Tara Wujcik Photography

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