Details for Odessa Petrochemical Complex

Historical Marker — Atlas Number 5507018244


Marker Number 18244
Atlas Number 5507018244
Marker Title Odessa Petrochemical Complex
Index Entry Odessa Petrochemical Complex
Address 620 N. Grant Ave.
City Odessa
County Ector
UTM Zone 13
UTM Easting 748802
UTM Northing 3526833
Subject Codes
Marker Year 2015
Recorded Texas Historic Landmark No
Marker Location
Private Property No
Marker Condition In Situ
Marker Size 27" x 42" with post
Marker Text In the 1950s, the Odessa Petrochemical Complex was the largest of its kind in the world. The first business to occupy the future complex was the Odessa Natural Gasoline Company founded in 1946 by four west Texas businessmen: W.D. Noel, E.G. Rodman, M.H. McWhirter and J.B Tubb. The aim of these oilmen was to find profitable and efficient applications for the vast quantities of natural gas wasted during the oil refinery process. Natural gas proved useful for the production of certain petrochemicals like butadine and styrene, key ingredients for synthetic rubber. The Odessa Chamber of Commerce proved eager to expand its economy, and looked to Noel and Rodman to boost prospects of the town. The chamber sanctioned the construction of a butadiene plant in 1956, followed by a Dynagen/General Tire plant in 1957 and a styrene plant in 1958. The El Paso Products Company, a joint venture between the West Texas Gathering Company and El Paso Natural Gas, built a facility and supplied the butadine and styrene plants with natural gas. This plant ultimately grew to be an anchor for the complex. Additional companies and plants joined the complex including Shell Oil, Rexene, American Cryogenics, South West Cryogenics and Beaunit Corporation. These companies produced petrochemical products used in a diverse array of residential and industrial contexts. The Odessa Petrochemical Complex fostered the growth of the American petroleum industry which, in turn, facilitated the subsequent expansion of Odessa. (2015)

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