National Register of Historic Places in San Diego County

National Register #73000433: Ford Building in San Diego

  National Register #73000433: Ford Building in San Diego
23 December 2016
(Click Photo to Zoom)

National Register #73000433
Ford Building
Balboa Park
San Diego
Built 1935

Designed by Walter Darwin Teague, this outstanding example of Art Deco architecture was built by the Ford Motor Company for the 1935 California Pacific International Exposition. Later, it was used as the Palace of Transportation for the 1936 World's Fair. It than [sic] became a general purpose building for many government and civic organizations over the next forty years.

The building was put on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973. In 1977, work began on a renovation project to preserve its unique features. Among these are Master Artist Juan Larrinaga's 9,000 square foot mural, The March of Transportation, and a courtyard fountain in the shape of the Ford V-8 logo of the 1930s.

In June 1980 the building reopened its doors as the new home of the San Diego Aerospace Museum, dedicated to the history of flight and San Diego's extensive contributions to that history.

The sleek aircraft in the foreground is an A-12 Blackbird. Fewer than three dozen were built. This Blackbird, serial number 06933, made its maiden flight in November 1963 and was retired in August 1965 with a total accumulated flight time of 406.20 hours.

The A-12 was the world's's only air-breathing aircraft capable of sustained speeds in excess of mach 3 at altitudes above 85,000 feet.

The aircraft to the left is a Convair Sea Dart, an experimental supersonic seaplane built in San Diego for the US Navy. Convair built five Sea Darts between 1953 and 1956.

The aircraft overhead is an American Airlines passenger jet on its final approach to San Diego International Airport. The Ford Building is located directly below the flight path about one and a third miles from the end of the runway

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