IRVINE, Calif. — Glen Bell opened The first Taco Bell restaurant on March 21, 1962 in Downey, Calif. Two years later, a Los Angeles police officer opened the first franchise in Torrance. Taco Bell grew rapidly with 100 restaurants in 1967. There were 325 locations by 1970 and the chain was purchased by PepsiCo in 1978.
The Downey Location was nicknamed “Número Uno” or number one in English. It closed in 1986 but the building housed other Mexican restaurants thereafter. The restaurant served it’s last meal in December 2014.
The building had a date with the wrecking ball. However, that all changed due to the successful social media campaign calling itself #savetacobell
On the night of November 19, Número Uno made it’s way south from Downey to the company’s headquarters in Irvine. It was a slow move–just 20 mph down busy streets.
The restaurant arrived at the Taco Bell corporate office in the early morning hours. I’m told it will be moved to the back of the building facing Interstate 5 and turned into a museum.
Fans are welcome to stop by and take photos it’s located at 1 Glen Bell Way in Irvine, CA.