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Los Angeles Air Force Base

Los Angeles, California

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Base History \ Arrival

Los Angeles Air Force Base (LA AFB) is located just south of Los Angeles International Airport and less than a mile west of the San Diego Freeway (I-405) in the city of El Segundo, a part of Los Angeles County. Beach, mountain, and desert recreation opportunities are just a short drive away. World renowned theme parks and the glamour of Hollywood are right here as well. The base operator's phone number is 310-653-1110, or DSN 312-633-1110.  This is not a “military town.

The cost of living is 50% above the national average.


LA AFB traces its history back to the Air Research and Development Command's Western Development Division, which was activated July 1, 1954, in Inglewood, not far from our current location. The activities of the Space Systems Division moved to the intersection of Aviation and El Segundo Boulevards in the early 60’s, and the property was designated Los Angeles Air Force Station on April 10, 1964. The Space and Missile Systems Command’s predecessors have remained at Los Angeles Air Force Station, which was redesignated as Los Angeles Air Force Base in September, 1987. The base in El Segundo, which has no flightline, houses the main installation. Fort MacArthur, which is located 20 mile south of the main base, is actually part of Los Angeles Air Force Base. For more information see LA AFB’shomepage.


LA AFB is headquarters to the Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC), part of Air Force Space Command. SMC is responsible for research, development, acquisition, on-orbit testing and sustainment of military space and missile systems. In addition to managing Air Force space and missile programs, SMC participates in space programs conducted by other U.S. military services, government agencies and North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies. SMC responds to user needs by developing and acquiring space systems. After launch and check-out, SMC turns these systems over to the appropriate operating command. SMC also serves as the integrating center for the Strategic Defense Initiative within AFMC. It monitors progress in more than 70 Space Defense Initiative efforts throughout AFMC. SMC itself has direct management responsibility for more than half of these efforts.

Population Served

LA AFB is the only active duty installation in Los Angeles County. In addition to persons assigned to SMC and the 61st Air Base Wing, LA AFB serves all Air Force personnel in the Greater Los Angeles area. We also serve Army, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard personnel who are stationed in this area.



Directions from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

From LAX, take Sepulveda Blvd. south. Turn left at El Segundo Blvd. and left again at Douglas Street. The entrance to Los Angeles AFB will be on your right.

Shuttle Service to Los Angeles AFB from LAX

Shuttle service between LAAFB and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is operated by Aerospace Corporation and runs every 20 minutes from 5:40am until 4:00pm. The shuttle travels from the Aerospace Corporation to LAX and back. From 4:00pm until 10:00pm, call the Shuttle Service at 310-336-4000 or 310-363-2195 from the baggage claim area at your airport terminal. The shuttle uses the inside transportation circle LAX.

Driving Directions

To reach the base from I-405, take the El Segundo Blvd. exit and go west on El Segundo Blvd. Continue west and turn right on Douglas Street. The Base entrance will be on your right. You will need a military or DoD ID to enter the base. Visitors (those with no military or DoD ID) must stop at the Visitors Center just inside the gate and show proof of registration, proof of insurance and a current drivers license to get a day pass. Park in Customer Parking. See Location Overview for information on parking passes.

Directions to the Housing Area at Fort MacArthur in San Pedro

The housing area is about 20 miles south of El Segundo. From the base take the I-405 south to the I-110. Follow the I-110 south to the end, where it meets Gaffey Street. Turn left on Gaffey, follow Gaffey to 22nd Street and turn left onto 22nd. Turn right at the traffic light on Pacific Avenue. Fort MacArthur is on the left about a block from 22nd Street. The main gate is located at Pacific Avenue and 24th Street.

When You Arrive at the Front Gate

When you arrive show your military ID to the Gate Guard. 

If you don't have a military ID you will need to get a day pass at the Visitor Control Center, the white building just at the entrance to the gate.  Present your drivers license and car registration.  Have your sponsor's name and phone number available as he/she will need to call the Vistor Control Center or go to the building to escort you.

Once inside the gate, stay on the main road. the Commissary and BX will be on your right. Opposite the gas station is a street that will take you to customer parking near Building 272. This will be a left turn.

Park and go into Building 272. At the Customer Service Center you will receive your inprocessing checklist. Be sure to arrive there between 8:00 and 11:00 a.m. Monday through Friday. Call your sponsor to let him/her know you have arrived.


Homes Near Base