After many years as a resident of Pico Rivera, Northrop Grumman was closing their B-2 plant on Rosemead and Washington along with many other defense industry plants throughout Southern Californian in the mid 90’s. The City of Pico Rivera stood to lose thousands of jobs and a huge amount of tax revenue which threatened the City’s entire operations.


In extensive negotiations with Northrop, Mr. Morris secured a purchase agreement for an initial 40 acres of the 200 acre site comprising logistics operations that Northrop could initially dispose while the balance of plant operations was being decommissioned. Through an intensive EIR process and community outreach, the site was re-classed light industrial and 872,000 square feet of Class A buildings were designed for the site. This re-class enabled new regional and national firms to have state of the art facilities in an urban, infill location to replace Northrop. Site mitigation included testing and proper disposal of 6 brick cisterns, 4 clarifiers and 7 USG fuel tanks in the trucking area and intensive interaction and final approval from LA County Fire, DTSC and the Regional Water Quality Board. Once certification was achieved, construction commenced.


The site, later named the Pico Rivera Business Center, was ground breaking for this size of new industrial in this sub-market. While surrounding areas were proven, such as Santa Fe Springs and Commerce, Pico Rivera had very few large industrial parcels and had not been tested. However, the 872,000 square foot Business Center and its Class A buildings were an immediate hit attracting notable tenant such as Boise Cascade, Pacific Coast Feather, Lagasse Bros., and Toshiba. The project also set the bar for the entire area in the quality and thoughtful design of its landscaping, street frontage treatment, site amenities, extensively screening trucking operations, and counter-intuitively providing an excellent pedestrian environment. With the attraction of new companies and over 250 jobs, this was the first but crucial step in revitalizing the Northrop plant property and re-building the City’s financial foundation.