Courtesy of a Lakewood CityTV video and photos, you can take a virtual tour of Lakewood Center’s famous and rarely-seen delivery tunnel and special back areas of the historic Lakewood Macy’s building at www.lakewoodcity.org/MacysTourVideo.
In 1952, Lakewood Center’s iconic May Company building (which later became a Macy’s) opened to throngs of eager shoppers, the first to experience—and embrace—the concept of a regional shopping mall. Lakewood Center was the largest shopping mall in the world for a number of years, changing forever the way Americans shop, and setting the pattern for the next 60 years of retailing.
The half-mile-long delivery tunnel under the mall was an innovative architectural feature of the time, enabling stores to receive deliveries during the day without disrupting shoppers walking to and from their cars.
Sixty-five years later, Lakewood Center remains the 2nd largest shopping center in Los Angeles County. The mall has evolved with the times over its six decades, with innovations such as a successful Restaurant Row on Candlewood Street and the first-ever mall-based Costco. Just as it served the families of the Lakewood region in the 1950s, Lakewood Center serves the families of the greater Lakewood area today.