Hangar No. 1 Building
1929 – Gable & Wyant
5701 West Imperial Highway – map
Okay, time for a Big Orange Landmarks pop quiz!
TRUE or FALSE: Los Angeles International Airport security personnel are thrilled with and greet warmly indiscriminate trespassers snapping unauthorized photographs of key airport facilities.
If you answered FALSE, you’re wrong. The correct answer, of course, is VERY, VERY FALSE.
This hangar, the first building at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), was finished in 1929, a few months after the airport began business on October 1, 1928. The airport at that time carried the unfortunate moniker of Mines Field, named for William Mines, the real estate guy who represented the site’s landowners.
This older shot, taken from sort of the same vantage as above, is from the city's Department of City Planning site. Are those folding doors what are called 'apronside doors' (see below)? Whatever they're called, what with all the trees there now, they haven't been used in a while.
The city of Los Angeles took full control of the airport in 1937, changing the name to Los Angeles Airport in 1941. Commercial service didn’t begin here until 1946 (Grand Central in Glendale, Burbank’s United Airport, and Van Nuys Airport all got more action back then). The ‘International’ was added in 1949.
The Spanish Colonial Revival hangar was restored in 1990 and, on 7/30/92, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Hangar No. 1 is now one of three cargo buildings operated by Aviation Facilities Company, Inc. (AFCO) in what’s known as the Imperial Cargo Complex. Pulled directly from their site, here are some Hangar No. 1 specs:
- 10,497 sq.ft. cargo handling space
- 6,540 sq.ft. office space
- 25 auto parking positions
- 99’ bay width
- 114’ bay length
- 20’ to 24’ bay height
- 2 apronside doors
- 26’x18’ apronside door width and height
I know it’s a lot different than it was more than 75 years ago, but you can still get a bit of a Howard Hughesy vibe from being there.
I would’ve loved to have seen the west side of the hangar, but it’s so gated off it would’ve been tough to get to even had the two security guards there not been on me like white on rice. (Actually, they were understanding, but still ignored my picture-taking defense of, “But it’s for a blog!”)
Below is the last shot I snapped before being shooed away, and the only glimpse of the second, larger tower I've got.
Up next: Mooers House