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Taco Bell Drops a Weird New Drive-Thru Restaurant in LA

The South Gate shipping container is the chain's first

Taco Bell, South Gate
Farley Elliott
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

Had a hankering for some Taco Bell while driving through South Gate lately? Then there’s a good chance you’ve swung through the corporate franchise’s latest location, a boxy new shipping container store dropped unceremoniously onto a busy intersection.

The curious new 1,000 square foot taco stop was actually picked up and moved from its original location, as a brand installation for Austin’s South By Southwest festival back in 2015. After that run ended, the company decided to keep their handiwork and drop it down in South Gate, of all places. There’s a drive thru, some outdoor patio seating, and a walk-up window for ordering.

It’s a pretty cool SG Blocks-designed building, actually, but a head-scratcher of a location given the relative lack of walkability there. Still, a small parking lot and the cantilevered drive thru make for brisk business throughout the day, and there’s certainly a fair amount of visibility at the intersection in question.

The new South Gate shipping container Taco Bell is the company’s first, and shows their desire to continue to expand into different looks as a way of staying relevant. No word on if more are planned in the future, but this current version is up and running daily now, just like a regular Taco Bell.

Taco Bell
13601 Garfield Ave.
South Gate, CA