Ford Rouge Factory Reopens to Public
It’s been almost 25 years, but tours are once again rolling at Ford’s historic River Rouge plant located on the RougeRiver in Dearborn , Mich. It’s a five-part tour that includes a driving tour of auto-related landmarks and behind-the-scenes factory interests; a virtual reality theater experience; an assembly plant walking tour; a neat observation tour of the factory’s “living roof” deck; and a look at rare footage of Rouge history. Guests will also see a special exhibit highlighting some of the factory-produced cars — like the 1929 Model A Roadster, 1932 V8 Victoria, 1956 Thunderbird and the 1965 Mustang.
The Rouge was an automotive “ore to assembly” complex developed between 1917 and 1928. Automotive pioneer Henry Ford purchased the property in 1915, and eventually the Rouge produced almost every component of the Model T, which was still being assembled at the Highland Park , Mich. , plant. In 1921, the Rouge began producing and assembling Fordsons, the world’s first mass-produced farm tractor. Six years later, Ford achieved his goal of complete self-sufficient manufacturing with the introduction of the Model A. Ford’s idea was to achieve “a continuous, nonstop process from raw material to finished product, with no pause even for warehousing or storage.”
The FordRougeCenter now employs about 6,000 people and remains Ford Motor Company’s largest single industrial complex. With the massive revitalization effort currently underway, the Rouge is a 21st century model for modern manufacturing.
The Henry Ford history destination includes HenryFordMuseum , GreenfieldVillage , The Henry Ford IMAX Theatre, The Benson Ford Research Center and The Ford Rouge Factory Tour. For more information about the Rouge Factory Tour and about The Henry Ford, call 313-982-6001 or visit www.thehenryford.org.