1. Travel
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

General Electric's Nela Park

By

Nela Park - East Cleveland Ohio

Nela Park

(public domain photo) Nela Park holiday lights display, Cleveland Ohio

Nela Park holiday lights display

(© Cetta Sole Hartman/used with permission) The National Christmas Tree - 2006

The National Christmas Tree - 2006

(© Terry Adams/NPS; used with permission)

Nela Park, located along Noble Road in East Cleveland seven miles east of downtown Cleveland, was the world's first industrial park. The 92-acre campus is home to General Electric's Lighting Division and employs around 1200. The facility is known for its gracious Georgian-style architecture and its spectacular holiday lighting display.

History:

Nela Park was established in 1911 when General Electric bought an abandoned vineyard seven miles from Cleveland in what was then the rural countryside. The facility is named for the Cleveland company -- National Electric Lamp Company -- that was acquired by GE in 1900 in an effort to standardize the size of light bulb bases. Nela Park was designated a National Historic Place in 1975.

GE Lighting National Headquarters:

Today, Nela Park is the world headquarters for General Electric's Lighting Division -- one of the company's seven divisions. The company, founded by the merging of Thomas Edison's Edison Electric Company and the Thomson Houston Company in 1892 has grown to become the world's second largest corporation.

Art and Architecture:

The Nela Park campus consists of 20 Georgian Revival-style buildings, all but four of which were built before 1921. These early buildings were all designed by the New York architectural firm of Wallis and Goodwillie. The facility is also known for its art collection, including a number of Norman Rockwell paintings.

Education and Conferences:

Among Nela Park's many functions is eduction. The facility hosts a full schedule of seminars for end users, contractors, and lighting distributors. In addition, Nela Park houses commercial, office, and industrial lighting showcases and other lighting design showrooms. Nela Park is not open to the general public. The showrooms are open by appointment only.

A Holiday Tradition:

One of the most popular aspects of Nela Park is its annual holiday lighting display. The facility decorates the campus along Noble Road with thousands of lights for visitors to enjoy from early December until New Year's Day.

Nela Park also makes and donates the lights and ornaments for the National Christmas Tree in Washington DC, a function it has performed since 1922.

Contact Information:

General Electric Lighting and Electrical Institute
Nela Park
1975 Noble Rd.
East Cleveland, OH 44112

References:

  • "Nela Park History" - www.gelighting.com
  • National Christmas Tree - www.nps.gov/
  • Encyclopedia of Cleveland History, Van Tassel and Grabowski, Indiana University Press, 1987


(Last updated 10-3-13)

 

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.