Hughes Aircraft Company, Mock-Up Building, 6775 Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, CA
Significance: Designs for Building 3 and associated Building 2 were developed by architect H.L. Gogerty even before the contract for the HK-1 Flying Boat was finalized. Construction of the building, to be used for production of models and component prototypes for the plane, began in the fall of 1942. The plant's first administrative building stood on the site chosen for the Mock-up Building, necessitating that structure's removal to a location east of Building 2, where it remained for several years. Building 3 was built completely of wood in compliance with the government contract stipulation that both the Flying Boat and any structures erected for its completion utilize non-essential materials. Building 3 was erected contemporaneously with Building 2, the Engineering Building, immediately to the north. The two buildings were designed as functional unit and were linked by a breezeway, allowing direct communication between the designers and engineers working in Building 2 and those giving form to their ideas in Building 3. Howard Hughes worked with his engineers for months in Building 3 designing the Flying Boat's instrumentation and working out kinks in the hydraulic system. The prototype of the plane's nose section was stored in the building's upstairs loft for years after the project was completed. Early work in guided missiles at Hughes began in Building 15 and production of prototypes was transferred to Building 3 around 1950. The first model of the renowned Falcon air-to-air missile was produced there. Beginning in the late 1950s and continuing through the Vietnam War, this building was used by machinists, sheet metal fabricators and pattern makers working with the helicopter engineering department to produce prototypes. Testing of helicopter drive trains was conducted in the metal shed attached to the north side. Cannons, machine guns, and other armament were also manufactured here.
Unprocessed Field note material exists for this structure: N1607
Survey number: HAER CA-174-C
Building/structure dates: 1942 Initial Construction