Rusted Ruins: An Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

North of Peru, Illinois, on a patch of land surrounded by farm fields, sit the rusting remains of an asphalt plant.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

The sun rose on the 8th day of the Epic Rust Belt Road Trip. The previous night, after exploring the ruins of a few beautiful abandoned schools in rural Iowa, I'd crossed from the wide open spaces of the Corn Belt into Illinois.

In a few hours I would arrive at the Rust Belt, home of the mighty ruins of America's industrial titans. But first there were a few more stops I had to make along the way.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Along a rural highway north of Peru Township in Northern Illinois, the central structure of an abandoned asphalt plant towered above the surrounding farm fields. The gate to the property hung open and inviting. The place was clearly abandoned and there were no signs forbidding entry, so I stopped to have a quick look.

[Update: since the writing of this article, I have learned that this facility is on private property and entry is unlawful. Do not attempt to access it.]

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Plants had grown up among a row of tanks near the entrance.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Off to one side, a rusty crane stood frozen in time.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

A row of disused trailers and tankers remained in the back of the property.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

A patina of rust covered every piece of equipment.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois


Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Black rubber conveyor belts on rusty rollers baked in the sun, still positioned to move material from the processing equipment to the massive storage bins...

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

and from the storage bins to transport vehicles.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

One conveyor had been colonized by plants.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

A small structure that once served as an office and control room still contained an assortment of control panels,

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

office equipment,

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

and books.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Another structure contained junction boxes and power switches.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

I was glad to find this place untouched by vandals. As always, I was careful not to disturb anything during my visit.

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

I got back on the road and headed south toward Oglesby to check out an abandoned cement factory, which was gigantic compared to this little asphalt plant. I'll tell you all about it next week. 

Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

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I have quite a few more pictures from this place -- too many to include in this article. I'll be sharing them on social media, so be sure to follow me if you'd like to see more:

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Abandoned Asphalt Plant in LaSalle Illinois

12 comments :

  1. Excellent feed, love the industrial decay and its got machinery and vehicles, looks like a great explore!!!

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  2. And I'm always amazed at how fast plants take over man's creations.

    Just back from 3 weeks in Iowa,---didn't get a chance to look at any "abandoned" places--too busy just enjoying the peace and quiet.

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    Replies
    1. I'm glad you had a great time in Iowa. Such a peaceful place.

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  3. Great pics. Too bad you couldn't get a back story. You always do those so well.

    Gotta ask; we know you disturb nothing in your adventures but...have you ever been tempted, and if so, by what?

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, William. Once in a while I'll find nice pieces of furniture, but they'd be too bulky to haul away even if I wanted to. The things that are most tempting are small vintage relics that will almost certainly be destroyed by time or vandals. I once found a stack of letters a guy wrote to his girlfriend in the '60s when he was in the service. They were left in an abandoned garage with a bunch of other mementos. It seemed like such a shame that no one was preserving these important pieces of a person's life.

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  4. whats the exact location on a map for this place if you dont mind sharing?

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    Replies
    1. Check out the map on my "Places I've Been" page.

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  5. I live about an hour from this asphalt plant. I've been past there several times but have never walked the property. I stumbled across your instagram page and was intrigued with your posts, which lead me here. I see you're based out of LA. What made you travel through Iowa, and in to Illinois? Was this a planned trip to the asphalt plant or did you conveniently stumble across it? My family owns and operates an asphalt paving business so I'm more than familiar with this equipment, and why I'm curious about your trip. Just wanted to say great post, and looking forward to reading your other posts as well.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you! I'm glad you're enjoying my posts. It's good to know that my instagram account leads people here. I can't remember how I found this asphalt plant. It might have been that I just stumbled upon it. Driving through Iowa was part of a month-long road trip I took to explore abandoned sites in the Rust Belt. I also stopped to check out abandoned places in each state along the way. I talk more about my motivation for the Rust Belt road trip in this article: http://www.placesthatwere.com/2016/03/out-of-frying-pan-and-into-rust-belt.html

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  6. wow, good post, thank you for your sharing.learn a lot

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