Ford Long Beach Assembly Plant Site's Effect on the Physical Environment

Development of the mud flat on Cerritos channel which became the Ford site made a positive contribution to the physical environment. The street running along its west side (the front) was named Henry Ford Avenue, and it along with the water tower and Ford sign on the Assembly building became harbor landmarks. Preservationists at this writing cherish them. In the section on Labor, it was demonstrated that the quality of life on the site and brought home by the workers was positive overall. The plant, like all Ford installations, was kept squeaky clean. The uses to which the plant has been put since 1959 have not perpetuated that image. Nevertheless, Ford's heavy spending on the necessary diking to keep its site from being inundated by sea water in fact preserved it. The basic physical environment is still an improved one, a developed harbor front with two sides exposed to the Cerritos Channel. Ford bought an unusable site, assisted in building bulkheads and bringing in fill, and sunk pilings. It maintained the property, and it left a valuable asset to the Port of Long Beach.