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El Segundo, California
City of El Segundo
El Segundo Welcome Sign.
El Segundo Welcome Sign.
Flag of El Segundo, California
Official seal of El Segundo, California
Location of El Segundo in Los Angeles County, California
Location of El Segundo in Los Angeles County, California
El Segundo, California is located in the United States
El Segundo, California
El Segundo, California
Location in the United States
Country United States
State California
County Los Angeles
Incorporated January 18, 1917
 • Total 10.88 sq mi (28.18 km2)
 • Land 5.46 sq mi (14.15 km2)
 • Water 5.42 sq mi (14.03 km2)  0.03%
115 ft (35 m)
 • Total 16,731
 • Density 1,537.8/sq mi (593.72/km2)
Time zone UTC−8 (Pacific)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−7 (PDT)
ZIP Code
Area codes 310/424
FIPS code 06-22412
GNIS feature IDs 1660605, 2410417

El Segundo ( Spanish for "The Second") is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States. Located on Santa Monica Bay, it was incorporated on January 18, 1917, and is part of the South Bay Cities Council of Governments. The population was 16,731 at the 2020 census, a .5% increase from 16,654 at the 2010 census.


The El Segundo and Los Angeles coastal area was first settled by the Tongva (or Gabrieleños) and Chumash Native American tribes hundreds of years ago. The area was once a part of Rancho Sausal Redondo ("Round Willow Patch Ranch"). Rancho Sausal Redondo extended from Playa Del Rey in the North to Redondo Beach in the South. Originally a Mexican land grant owned by Antonio Ygnacio Avila, the rancho was later purchased by a Scottish baronet named Sir Robert Burnett. After his return to Scotland, the property was purchased by then current manager of the rancho, Daniel Freeman. Daniel Freeman sold portions of the rancho to multiple owners. George H. Peck owned the 840 acres (3.4 km2) of land the Chevron Refinery now sits on. Peck also developed land in neighboring El Porto where a street still bears his name. The city earned its name ("the second" in Spanish) as it was the site of the second Standard Oil refinery on the West Coast (the first was at Richmond in Northern California), when Standard Oil of California purchased the 840 acres (3.4 km2) of farm land in 1911.

El Segundo and Standard Oil Refinery, c. 1924

The company was renamed Chevron in 1984, and the El Segundo refinery will soon enter its second century of operation. The city was incorporated in 1917.

Douglas Aircraft Factory - El Segundo
SBD Dauntless dive bombers being built in the Douglas Aircraft Factory, El Segundo.

The Douglas Aircraft Company plant in El Segundo was one of the major aircraft manufacturing facilities in California during World War II. It was one of the major producers of SBD Dauntless dive bombers, which achieved fame in the Battle of Midway. The facility, now operated by Northrop Grumman, is still an aircraft plant.


Pollution and toxic waste cleanup remain issues as El Segundo converts industrial sites to shopping malls and sports facilities. The north and south boundaries of the town are Los Angeles International Airport and Manhattan Beach, with the Pacific Ocean as the western boundary. Aircraft noise from LAX is a major issue for residents on the north side of El Segundo. Residents are currently active in tree-planting along Imperial Highway.

El Segundo is located at 33°55′17″N 118°24′22″W / 33.92139°N 118.40611°W / 33.92139; -118.40611 (33.921313, -118.406233).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.5 square miles (14 km2), over 99% of which is land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1920 1,563
1930 3,503 124.1%
1940 3,738 6.7%
1950 8,011 114.3%
1960 14,219 77.5%
1970 15,620 9.9%
1980 13,752 −12.0%
1990 15,223 10.7%
2000 16,033 5.3%
2010 16,654 3.9%
2020 16,731 0.5%
U.S. Decennial Census


The 2010 United States Census reported that El Segundo had a population of 16,654. The population density was 3,047.9 people per square mile (1,176.8/km2). The racial makeup of El Segundo was 12,997 (78.0%) White (69.1% non-Hispanic White), 337 (2.0%) African American, 68 (0.4%) Native American, 1,458 (8.8%) Asian, 38 (0.2%) Pacific Islander, 799 (4.8%) from other races, and 957 (5.7%) from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 2,609 persons (15.7%).

The Census reported that 16,578 people (99.5% of the population) lived in households, 66 (0.4%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 10 (0.1%) were institutionalized.

Of the 7,085 households, 2,183 (30.8%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 3,050 (43.0%) were married couples living together, 729 (10.3%) had a female householder with no husband present, 326 (4.6%) had a male householder with no wife present; and 369 (5.2%) were unmarried opposite-sex partnerships. About 31.8% were made up of individuals, and 8.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.34. The city had 4,105 families (57.9% of all households); the average family size was 3.02.

22.3% of the population was under the age of 18, 6.7% was 18 to 24, 31.1% was 25 to 44, 29.8% was 45 to 64, and 10.1%o was 65 or older. The median age was 39.2. For every 100 females, there were 99.4 males. For every 100 females 18 and over, there were 98.8 males.

The 7,410 housing units had an average density of 1,356.1 per square mile (523.6/km2), of which 3,034 (42.8%) were owner-occupied and 4,051 (57.2%) occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 0.4%; the rental vacancy rate was 4.1%. About 49.1% of the population lived in owner-occupied housing units and 50.4% in rental housing units.

According to the 2010 United States Census, El Segundo had a median household income of $84,341, with 4.8% of the population living below the federal poverty line.


El a Segundo Main Street
Main Street in El Segundo, near Grand Avenue

As of the 2000 Census, the population density was 2,894.6 inhabitants per square mile (1,117.4/km2). There were 7,261 housing units at an average density of 1,310.9 per square mile (506.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 83.61% White, 1.17% African American, 0.47% Native American, 6.41% Asian, 0.29% Pacific Islander, 3.51% from other races, and 4.55% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 11.01% of the population.

Of the 7,060 households, 28.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.5% were married couples living together, 10.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 44.6% were not families. Of all households, 34.3% were made up of individuals, and 7.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.27 and the average family size was 3.00.

22.7% of the population was under age 18, 6.2% from 18 to 24, 38.7% from 25 to 44, 22.9% from 45 to 64, and 9.5% 65 or older. The median age was 36. For every 100 females, there were 98.7 males. For every 100 females 18 and over, there were 96.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $61,341, and for a family was $74,007. Males had a median income of $52,486 versus $41,682 for females. The per capita income for the city was $33,996. About 3.1% of families and 4.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.7% of those under age 18 and 6.0% of those age 65 or over.

Parks and recreation

El Segundo has its own beach, as well as three public pools, including two outdoor pools open only during the summer months. The El Segundo Parks and Rec staff are the basis for the hit NBC program Parks and Rec. El Segundo has two full-sized turf fields named Campus El Segundo Athletic Fields in which is open to the public.


State Route 1 passes through the city as Pacific Coast Highway, while Interstate 105 begins its journey at Sepulveda Boulevard (the continuation of State Route 1 north of El Segundo city limits) just outside the northern city limits of El Segundo and heads east to Norwalk.

Amtrak's El Segundo Bus Stop (ESG) is located at the Los Angeles County Metro Green Line Douglas Station and is serviced by Thruway Motorcoach. The stop is on Amtrak's 1c bus route that runs four times a day between Amtrak's Torrance Bus Stop (Alpine Village) and the Bakersfield Amtrak Station where passengers transfer to and from trains on Amtrak's San Joaquin route; passengers can also connect with Amtrak's Pacific Surfliner route at the Van Nuys Amtrak Station.

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is located immediately to the north of El Segundo. In 2014, an air quality study found harmful ultrafine particles from the takeoffs and landings at LAX to be of a much greater magnitude than previously thought.

In popular culture

  • The movie Dude, Where's My Car? was filmed in El Segundo, in front of the ice cream parlor formerly known as Scoops.
  • The El Segundo Parks and Rec staff are the basis for the hit NBC program Parks and Rec.
  • ' is filmed in parts of El Segundo.
  • A single appearing on hip hop group A Tribe Called Quest's 1990 album People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm is entitled "I Left My Wallet in El Segundo."
  • Although filmed in British Columbia, the music video for the song "First Date" by pop-punk band Blink-182 takes place in El Segundo in 1974.


Chevron El Segundo refinery, 2007
Chevron's El Segundo refinery, 2007

El Segundo has many aviation-related and petroleum-related industries and operations.

The name was adopted in 1911 when Chevron built its second refinery, El Segundo, which is Spanish for "the Second". This refinery is controversial for receiving some of their crude oil from the Amazon region of South America - more than 5,000 barrels per day. In 1928 William Mines, an immigrant from Canada, leased land for a flying field. In 1930, Los Angeles Municipal Airport, later Los Angeles International Airport, opened north of El Segundo; its presence led to the concentration of aerospace and aviation-related firms in the El Segundo area.

Aerial Mattel Headquarters El Segundo May 2012
Headquarters of Mattel

Many large aerospace companies have facilities in El Segundo, including Boeing, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Wyle Laboratories, the Aerospace Corporation, and Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings. The last two are headquartered there. It is also home to the Los Angeles Air Force Base and the Space and Missile Systems Center, which is responsible for space-related acquisition for the military. In addition to the Chevron oil refinery, El Segundo is located next to the Hyperion sewage treatment plant and the El Segundo power plant.

The El Segundo power plant is operated by the American energy company NRG. In an effort to combine sustainable and environmentally friendly techniques with fossil power generation, NRG was to create a new combined cycle power island, providing power for 240,000 households. The new power plant, slated to go online in 2013, was to use two generators: a Siemens gas turbine and an additional steam turbine. Natural gas drives the gas turbine, while the hot exhaust gases generate steam for the steam turbine. The efficiency of the power plant will be increased up to 58%. A huge environmental advantage of this type of power plant is that in combustion, natural gas generates relatively little carbon dioxide compared to other fossil fuels.

The current Boeing factory, the Boeing Satellite Development Center, was originally built by Nash Motors in 1946 and opened in 1948. In 1955, Hughes Aircraft Company purchased the 500,000-square-foot (46,000 m2) building; it was converted to build missiles and also served as a test facility.

Toy manufacturer Mattel, AT&T Entertainment Hub (formerly DirecTV) direct technology marketing company PCM, Inc., and A-Mark Precious Metals are headquartered there, as well as sporting goods retailer Big 5 Sporting Goods and Database company Teradata has a research and development facility in El Segundo, as well. The North American headquarters of the Japanese video game company Square Enix are also in the city.

Prior to its dissolution, Unocal was headquartered in El Segundo. At one time, MGM Grand Air had its headquarters in El Segundo. From 1982 until 1996, the headquarters of the Los Angeles Raiders of the National Football League was located in El Segundo. The Los Angeles Kings Hockey Club is also located in El Segundo. In 2024, the Los Angeles Chargers will move their headquarters to El Segundo from Costa Mesa.

Film production companies are located in El Segundo, including Rhythm and Hues Studios and Lightstorm Entertainment.

The Los Angeles Times announced that its newsroom would move from downtown Los Angeles to a 4.5-acre (18,000 m2) campus in El Segundo in the summer of 2018.

Top employers

According to the city's 2019–20 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 Boeing 13,441
2 Raytheon Technologies 6,000
3 The Aerospace Corporation 3,400
4 Northrop Grumman 2,539
5 Mattel 1,545
6 Chevron 1,252
7 Internet Brands 582
8 Karl Storz Endoscopy America Inc. 447
9 Infineon Technologies 423
10 Big 5 Sporting Goods 289

Subsidiaries of companies

Nexon America, the North American branch of Korean online game publisher Nexon Co. Ltd. has its offices in El Segundo.

The North American branch of the Japanese video game publisher and developer Square Enix has its headquarters in El Segundo.

Due to its proximity to Los Angeles International Airport, El Segundo became the host of several offices of airlines. In 1979, the United Airlines Reservation Center, a two-story, $4.5 million, 55,000-square-foot (5,100 m2) facility in the International Center, was scheduled to begin construction. Austin Co., a firm in Irvine, was to build the facility, which was scheduled for opening in May of that year. Japan Airlines operates its United States headquarters, which was moved from New York City to El Segundo in around 2003. at Suite 620 of 300 Continental Boulevard; Cathay Pacific has an office in El Segundo. The airline moved its North America headquarters to Greater Los Angeles in 1990, and the headquarters were situated in El Segundo until 2005.

Air China operates its North American headquarters in the 13,000-square-foot (1,200 m2) 2131 East Maple Avenue building, south of LAX, in El Segundo. Its current North American headquarters opened with a ribbon cutting ceremony and other festivities on Friday March 26, 2010. The call center reservations, marketing, and sales employees all moved into the building. The building includes a call center with space for 50 employees; when the building opened, half of the spaces had been filled.

Air New Zealand operates its United States headquarters in El Segundo. Other airlines with offices in El Segundo include Turkish Airlines, Thai Airways, Air Tahiti Nui, Aeroméxico, China Airlines Emirates, EVA Air, and Singapore Airlines.

Infineon Technologies acquired El Segundo-based company International Rectifier in 2015.


El segundo hs1
El Segundo High School

The El Segundo Unified School District serves the residential district of El Segundo, west of Pacific Coast Highway. The school district was listed as one of the state's 29 academic outperformers by Standards and Poor's in 2005.

  • El Segundo High School

Eastern El Segundo is part of the tax base for the Wiseburn School District and the Centinela Valley Union High School District (CVUHSD). There are no residential areas in the eastern part of the city. This portion of the city includes corporate operations providing significant tax revenue to the districts.

Vistamar School is a private school in El Segundo.

Originally all of the city was located in the Wiseburn School District, which opened in 1896. When the Inglewood Union High School District, now known as the CVUHSD, opened in 1905, its territory included the Wiseburn district. In 1912 the El Segundo School District opened, taking territory from the Wiseburn School District. The territory of the El Segundo district continued to be in the Inglewood Union District. On November 22, 1925, the El Segundo High School District was formed and El Segundo withdrew from the Inglewood Union district.

Notable people

  • Roseanne Barr, comedian, owns Full Moon and High Tides Productions
  • George Brett, baseball player, Hall of Fame
  • Ken Brett, baseball player
  • Joe Caravello, NFL football player
  • Dick Dale, guitarist, pioneer of Surf music
  • Rusty Frank, author, choreographer, producer, dance historian
  • Mike Gordon, Assemblymember and mayor of El Segundo
  • Dave LaRoche, baseball pitcher
  • Vladimir Matyushenko, UFC fighter
  • Christopher McCandless, adventurer who inspired the book Into the Wild and the 2007 film The Call of the Wild
  • Dave McCoy, skier and businessman, founder of Mammoth Mountain, was born in El Segundo
  • Scott McGregor, baseball player
  • Bob Samuelson, volleyball player
  • John Van Hamersveld, artist and surfer
  • Paul Westphal, basketball player and coach
  • Dave Williamson, stand-up comedian

Images for kids

See also

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