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Torrance, California

From Academic Kids

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City of Torrance official logo

Torrance is a city located in Los Angeles County, California.

The city is named after its founder, oilman Jared Sidney Torrance. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 137,946. Torrance is the 7th largest city in Los Angeles County.

Contents

Geography

Torrance is located at 33°50'5" North, 118°20'29" West (33.834815, -118.341330)Template:GR.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 53.2 km² (20.5 mi²). 53.2 km² (20.5 mi²) of it is land and none of it is covered by water.

Area attractions

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Typical roadside signage at Del Amo Fashion Center

Del Amo Fashion Center, at three million square feet (300,000 m²), is one of the largest malls in the United States. Estimates vary between the second largest (after the Mall of America) and the fourth largest, depending on the measurements used. The current mall was created when Del Amo Center, built in 1958, merged with Del Amo Fashion Square, built in 1970. Once located on opposite sides of Carson Street, a gigantic expansion of the mall spanning Carson Street joined the two centers by 1982. In 2005, the east end of the original mall north of Carson Street was demolished to make way for a new open-air shopping center.

One of the country's few urban wetlands can be found in Torrance. Madrona Marsh is a nature preserve on undeveloped land once set aside for oil production.

Torrance High School is not only one of the oldest high schools in California, its facade is familiar to television viewers as the setting for Beverly Hills 90210 and Buffy the Vampire Slayer and to moviegoers for its appearances in Fast Times at Ridgemont High and She's All That.

South High School was used as a location for the 1999 filming of the movie American Beauty.

Commerce and industry

Torrance is home to the U.S. headquarters of two of the three largest Japanese auto makers, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. and American Honda Motor Company. Nissan North America, Inc. is headquartered in Gardena, a short distance from the Toyota complex. Robinson Helicopters are designed and built in Torrance as are Garrett Systems turbochargers, used on automobile engines worldwide. California's aerospace industry began in Torrance and surrounding communities.

Torrance is also home to the main bakery facility for King's Hawaiian, the dominant brand of Hawaiian bread in North America.

As a major oil-producing region, Torrance was once dotted with thousands of oil wells and oil derricks. Though the oil wells are not as common as they once were, the Mobil refinery in the north end of the city is responsible for much of Southern California's gasoline supply. In fact, much of Southern California's gasoline supply is refined within a few miles of Torrance. ARCO produces gasoline in Carson; Texaco has a refinery a bit further east in Wilmington; Unocal is in San Pedro while one of the oldest refineries in the state is the Chevron plant in El Segundo. Torrance was also an important hub and shop site of the Pacific Electric Railway.

Torrance has a busy general aviation airport. In 1990 it had 243,324 take-offs and landings, down from the 1974 record of 428,000 operations. Airport noise abatement is a major local issue.

Livability

Today, Torrance is considered to be a relatively desirable place to live in Los Angeles County, reflected in the ever-increasing property values and its proximity to the beach communities of Redondo Beach, Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach and the upscale coastal communities of the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

Torrance is one of the few American cities that approaches the ideal balance between the three major types of zones. This explains its slogan: "A Balanced City, Industrial, Residential, Commercial."

Sister cities

In 1973, Torrance established a sister-city relationship with Kashiwa, Chiba (Japan), as part of the Sister Cities International program. Since then, citizens of Torrance have regularly engaged in cultural exchange with Kashiwa through the guidance of the Torrance Sister City Association, which facilitates a Japanese cultural festival, a yearly student exchange program, and contact between officials of the two cities.

Demographics

As of the censusTemplate:GR of 2000, there are 137,946 people, 54,542 households, and 36,270 families residing in the city. The population density is 2,593.1/km² (6,715.7/mi²). There are 55,967 housing units at an average density of 1,052.0/km² (2,724.7/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 59.16% White, 28.61% Asian, 4.72% from two or more races, 4.57% from other races, 2.19% Black or African American, 0.41% Native American and 0.35% Pacific Islander. 12.79% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 54,542 households out of which 31.1% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.1% are married couples living together, 10.3% have a female householder with no husband present, and 33.5% are non-families. 27.5% of all households are made up of individuals and 9.1% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.51 and the average family size is 3.10.

In the city the population is spread out with 23.0% under the age of 18, 6.8% from 18 to 24, 32.4% from 25 to 44, 23.8% from 45 to 64, and 14.1% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 39 years. For every 100 females there are 94.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 91.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city is $56,489, and the median income for a family is $67,098. Males have a median income of $51,472 versus $37,114 for females. The per capita income for the city is $28,144. 6.4% of the population and 4.5% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 7.0% of those under the age of 18 and 6.8% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.

Notable residents

Torrance is the home of Chinese American figure skater Michelle Kwan.

External links

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