Notable Giant Uniroyal Tire Turns 60

On Monday this week, the giant Uniroyal tire located along Interstate 94 turned 60 years old. The tire has been welcoming folks into Detroit for years now. It was initially built as a Ferris wheel back in 1964 for the New York World’s Fair.

It was moved to Michigan in 1965 and has been sitting there since. It acts as a significant childhood memory for many, as some people got inside as kids to take pictures and videos.

In addition to greeting its visitors, the giant tire also acts as a promotion for Uniroyal tires. The brand is currently owned by the French tire maker Michelin. It was previously owned by the U.S. Rubber Co. which was founded in 1892 in Connecticut.

It was the U.S. Rubber Co. that built the Ferris wheel, making it the biggest non-production tire ever built. It was made using fiberglass and polyester resin as opposed to rubber. After the New York Fair in 1964, Uniroyal offered to give it away to any municipality that wanted it, on condition that they would cater for moving costs of about $300,000.

New York didn’t want it, so Allen Park requested for it. Using 22 trucks, it was moved to Michigan where it transformed from a whitewall to a radial tire. It has created many memories for many people throughout the years. It’s also a testament to the grit, ingenuity, and endurance of the American automotive industry.