Hawaiian Gardens, California
Hawaiian Gardens Civic Center
Hawaiian Gardens Civic Center
Flag of Hawaiian Gardens, California
Official seal of Hawaiian Gardens, California
"Our Youth, Our Future"
Location of Hawaiian Gardens in Los Angeles County, California.
Location of Hawaiian Gardens in Los Angeles County, California.
Hawaiian Gardens, California is located in the United States
Hawaiian Gardens, California
Hawaiian Gardens, California
Location in the United States
Coordinates: 33°49′49″N 118°04′22″W / 33.83028°N 118.07278°W / 33.83028; -118.07278
Country United States
State California
CountyLos Angeles
Incorporated (city)April 9, 1964[1]
 • TypeCity Council-Administrator
 • MayorMaria Del Rio[2]
 • Mayor Pro TemVictor Farfan[2]
 • Council Members[2]Luis Roa
Dandy De Paula
Ernest Vargas
 • City ManagerErnesto Marquez
 • Total0.96 sq mi (2.48 km2)
 • Land0.95 sq mi (2.45 km2)
 • Water0.01 sq mi (0.03 km2)  1.09%
33 ft (10 m)
 • Total14,149
 • Estimate 
 • Density14,935.65/sq mi (5,768.48/km2)
Time zoneUTC−8 (PST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−7 (PDT)
ZIP code
Area code562
FIPS code06-32506
GNIS feature ID2410716[6]

Hawaiian Gardens is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States.[6] It is the smallest city in the county in area (approximately 1.0 mi2) and was incorporated on April 9, 1964. The population was 14,149 at the 2020 census, down slightly from 14,254 at the 2010 census.

The city's unusual name originated with a 1920s refreshment stand that was decorated with palm fronds and bamboo. It was the then-rural area's main landmark for many years, and its name stuck as the small town grew up around it.[7] As one of seven Los Angeles County cities that allow casino gambling, more than $9.2 million (65%) of the city's revenue comes from the Gardens Casino.[8]


Hawaiian Gardens is bounded by the Los Angeles County cities of Long Beach and Lakewood and by the Orange County city of Cypress.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.0 square mile (2.6 km2). 1.0 square mile (2.6 km2) of it is land and 0.01 square miles (0.026 km2) of it (1.09%) is water. Hawaiian Gardens is the smallest city in area in Los Angeles County.


After a nineteenth-century property bubble crashed, Los Angeles began growing again, and by the turn of the century had reached 100,000 inhabitants. But the area that would become Hawaiian Gardens (then known as "The Delta") remained largely a rural area with dairy and truck farms and some oil development.[7] In 1927, a fruit stand with palms was opened on the corner of two dirt roads of Carson Street and Norwalk Boulevard called Hawaiian Gardens. Thus, the name was born.[7] During the Great Depression, the area became a refuge for people to buy or build a home due to low land costs, despite poor roads, frequent flooding, and limited access to electricity.[7]

In the late 1920s, only Norwalk Blvd was a paved road. For the next 35 years, except for Pioneer Boulevard, Norwalk Boulevard, and Carson Street, the little town would be all dirt roads. When the city was incorporated in 1964, the paving of roads began immediately. By 1966, all streets south of Carson between Pioneer and Norwalk were paved. By 1968, all streets were paved, and the three major thoroughfares of Norwalk, Pioneer, and Carson were widened to current traffic standards.

Historic structures lost


Historical population
2022 (est.)13,593[4]−3.9%
U.S. Decennial Census[9]


At the 2010 census Hawaiian Gardens had a population of 14,254. The population density was 14,905.0 inhabitants per square mile (5,754.9/km2). The racial makeup of Hawaiian Gardens was 6,477 (45.4%) White (7.3% Non-Hispanic White),[10] 546 (3.8%) African American, 178 (1.2%) Native American, 1,513 (10.6%) Asian, 57 (0.4%) Pacific Islander, 4,929 (34.6%) from other races, and 554 (3.9%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 11,010 persons (77.2%).[11]

The census reported that 14,238 people (99.9% of the population) lived in households, 16 (0.1%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and no one was institutionalized.

There were 3,562 households, 1,930 (54.2%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 1,819 (51.1%) were married couples living together, 714 (20.0%) had a female householder with no husband present, 337 (9.5%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 217 (6.1%) partnerships, and 20 (0.6%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 534 households (15.0%) were one person and 246 (6.9%) had someone living alone who was 65 or older. The average household size was 4.00. There were 2,870 families (80.6% of households); the average family size was 4.33.

The age distribution was 4,576 people (32.1%) under the age of 18, 1,759 people (12.3%) aged 18 to 24, 4,109 people (28.8%) aged 25 to 44, 2,684 people (18.8%) aged 45 to 64, and 1,126 people (7.9%) who were 65 or older. The median age was 28.4 years. For every 100 females, there were 99.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.9 males.

There were 3,703 housing units at an average density of 3,872.1 per square mile, of the occupied units 1,577 (44.3%) were owner-occupied and 1,985 (55.7%) were rented. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.7%; the rental vacancy rate was 4.3%. 6,247 people (43.8% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 7,991 people (56.1%) lived in rental housing units.

According to the 2010 United States Census, Hawaiian Gardens had a median household income of $42,017, with 24.4% of the population living below the federal poverty line.[10]


At the 2000 census there were 14,779 people in 3,507 households, including 2,868 families, in the city. The population density was 15,389.5 inhabitants per square mile (5,941.9/km2). There were 3,624 housing units at an average density of 3,773.7 units per square mile (1,457.0 units/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 38.24% White, 4.45% Black or African American, 1.28% Native American, 8.80% Asian, 0.74% Pacific Islander, 41.65% from other races, and 4.85% from two or more races. 62.8% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.[12] Of the 3,507 households 52.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.8% were married couples living together, 19.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 18.2% were non-families. 14.2% of households were one person and 5.8% were one person aged 65 or older. The average household size was 4.21 and the average family size was 4.52.

The age distribution was 36.8% under the age of 18, 12.6% from 18 to 24, 30.1% from 25 to 44, 14.4% from 45 to 64, and 6.2% 65 or older. The median age was 25 years. For every 100 females, there were 104.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 102.4 males.

The median household income was $34,500 and the median family income was $31,840. Males had a median income of $21,074 versus $20,643 for females. The per capita income for the city was $10,728. About 19.8% of families and 22.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.4% of those under age 18 and 15.2% of those age 65 or over.

Government and infrastructure

City government

The City of Hawaiian Gardens is a general law city and governs itself as a council-manager form of government. The city council is elected at-large. The city council appoints the city manager. The council establishes policies and ordinances and the city manager, assisted by the department heads, implements them. It is a contract city, meaning its main municipal services (fire, police, library) are contracted to other regional agencies. Prior to the passage of Proposition 13 in 1978, this, along with the city's gambling revenue, allowed it to keep property taxes very low. Incorporation in 1964 was primarily intended to prevent annexation to Long Beach, a full-service city with higher property taxes. As a small municipal enclave centered around gambling near many transit arteries, it has been called the "Money Laundering Capital" of Southern California.[13][14]

The city council members must be Hawaiian Gardens residents and registered voters. As specified by the Constitution of California, city elections are non-partisan. One council member is also selected as a member of the Gateway Cities Council of Governments.

State and federal representation

In the California State Legislature, Hawaiian Gardens is in the 36th Senate District, represented by Republican Janet Nguyen, and in the 67th Assembly District, represented by Democrat Sharon Quirk-Silva.[15]

In the United States House of Representatives, Hawaiian Gardens is in California's 45th congressional district, represented by Republican Michelle Steel.[16]

Public services

Fire protection in Hawaiian Gardens is provided by the Los Angeles County Fire Department with ambulance transport by Care Ambulance Service.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department operates the Lakewood Station in Lakewood, serving Hawaiian Gardens.[17]

The Los Angeles County Department of Health Services operates the Whittier Health Center in Whittier, serving Hawaiian Gardens.[18]

Hawaiian Gardens is served by the United States Postal Service Los Alamitos Post Office, located at 10650 Reagan St, Los Alamitos, CA 90720.

Library Services are provided by the Los Angeles County Public Library, which operates a local branch at 11940 Carson St.


Hawaiian Gardens is served by the ABC Unified School District.

Schools within Hawaiian Gardens include Venn W. Furgeson Elementary School,[19] Hawaiian Elementary School,[20] and Fedde Middle School (formerly called Killingsworth Junior High School).[21]

High school students are zoned to Artesia High School in Lakewood.

The city is represented by the Cerritos Community College district and pays bonds to build facilities in that district, but geographically is closer to the Liberal Arts campus of Long Beach City College.


Interstate 605 (viewed from the southbound lanes) at Hawaiian Gardens, California approaching Hawaiian Gardens Casino

Top employers

According to the city's 2020 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,[22] the top employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 Hawaiian Gardens Casino 600
2 ABC Unified School District 100
3 City of Hawaiian Gardens 69
4 Food 4 Less 67
5 McDonald's 50
6 99 Cents Only Stores 25
7 Jack in the Box 24
8 (tie) CVS Pharmacy 18
8 (tie) Howard Contracting Inc. 18
10 Consolidated Color Corp 15

See also


  1. ^ "California Cities by Incorporation Date". California Association of Local Agency Formation Commissions. Archived from the original (Word) on October 17, 2013. Retrieved August 25, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c "City Council". City of Hawaiian Gardens. Retrieved April 23, 2017.
  3. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  4. ^ a b "U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts: Hawaiian Gardens city, California". www.census.gov. Retrieved March 5, 2024.
  5. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". United States Census Bureau. May 24, 2020. Retrieved May 27, 2020.
  6. ^ a b "City of Hawaiian Gardens". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey, United States Department of the Interior. Retrieved August 15, 2023.
  7. ^ a b c d Jacobs, Tom. "Hawaiian Gardens: An Informal History". Hawaiian Gardens, California. Retrieved October 19, 2022.
  8. ^ City of Hawaiian Gardens (July 13, 2006). "Budget Summary" (PDF). Retrieved December 31, 2006.
  9. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  10. ^ a b "Hawaiian Gardens (City) QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau". Archived from the original on April 16, 2015. Retrieved November 10, 2013.
  11. ^ "2010 Census Interactive Population Search: CA - Hawaiian Gardens city". U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on July 15, 2014. Retrieved July 12, 2014.
  12. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  13. ^ Scbuetz, Richard (January 6, 2020). "Hawaiian Gardens, California: The Money Laundering Capital of the World". GGB News.
  14. ^ "Hawaiian Gardens casino to pay California $3.15 million, admits misleading regulators". Los Angeles Times. 2019.
  15. ^ "California Districts". Regents of the University of California. Retrieved January 5, 2023.
  16. ^ "California's 45th Congressional District - Representatives & District Map". Civic Impulse, LLC.
  17. ^ "Lakewood Station Archived December 30, 2009, at the Wayback Machine." Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. Retrieved on January 21, 2010.
  18. ^ "Whittier Health Center." Los Angeles County Department of Health Services. Retrieved on March 18, 2010.
  19. ^ "Furgeson Elementary School". Retrieved August 15, 2023.
  20. ^ "Hawaiian Elementary School". Retrieved August 15, 2023.
  21. ^ "Fedde Academy". Retrieved August 15, 2023.
  22. ^ "City of Hawaiian Gardens CAFR". Retrieved February 18, 2023.