Renderings courtesy of Long Beach
Measure A is the largest infrastructural investment the city’s seen in a generation—something I supported long before nearly 80% of voters approved it last year.
And why? The tax initiative that focused on generating safety and public infrastructure funds will do just that: look at areas in dire needs of upgrades, the result being a complete overhaul of Broadway and a plethora of projects that, in its first year alone, look like infrastructure porn for any urban design nerd.
But here are some renderings that show off how some parks will be upgraded. [Park descriptions provided by City of Long Beach.]
Whaley Park [pictured above] (4th District)
Located on the north and south sides of Atherton, the park was donated by L.S. Whaley in March 1950. Whaley was a developer who sold more than 11,000 new homes in Long Beach during the 1940s and ’50s and is also responsible for donating 11 acres for Scherer Park, 12 acres for Whaley Park and five acres for Los Altos Park.
Drake Park (1st District)
This park is located west of Maine Avenue, between 9th and 10th Streets. Col. Charles R. Drake, the one time operator of the old Virginia Hotel, president of the Long Beach Amusement Company, and developer of the bathhouse on the Amusement Company site, donated the original 1.86 acres. On January 11, 1904, the park was deeded to the City and called Knoll Park. At that time Col. Drake was president of the Seaside Water Company that deeded the park to the City, and restricted the land to park use. The donor had maintained this property for years as a private park before turning it over to the City.
Los Cerritos Park (8th District)
Los Cerritos is 7.24 acres—though originally, the park had just 1.9 acres and was donated by Amelia M.E. Bixby and dedicated to the County of Los Angeles in 1907. It was annexed to the City in 1924. The park adjoined the Pacific Electric Los Cerritos Station where people in the area would go to commute to Los Angeles. Now the MTA Blue Line passes Los Cerritos Park every day.
Veterans Park (6th District)
The original park was to be between Golden and Maine Avenues, Spring and 29th Streets. The site was purchased in 1940 and named Veterans Park. Improvements had started when a legal controversy over ownership of this 8 ½ acre area compelled the City to stop work. Residents decided use the site used for Birney Elementary School. The current site between 28th and Spring Streets was acquired as a park and named Veterans Memorial Park on August 19, 1952.
On April 12, 1956, a development plan was approved by the City Council. The park was completed in April 1958 with the dedication of the community recreation center.