The strips of green on Ocean Boulevard? They’re parks—and their decades-old design guides are being updated

Victory and Santa Cruz Parks—the former, originally dedicated in 1889 and acting as the city’s oldest park, stretching on the south side of Ocean between Alamitos and Magnolia Avenues and the latter stretching on the same side of Ocean from Cedar to Golden Avenues in DTLB—have always been lovingly mocked by both residents and city planners alike: They’re basically the sidewalk decoration for the many old and new high-rises running along the major arterial that is Ocean.

And “for the first time since 1989,” according to a press release from the City of Long Beach, the city wants to actually update the design guidelines—the document which guides what can and can’t be done to the space—but not before seeking the public’s input on the project: Public comment on the project runs through June 9 and the city is hosting a “Popup at the Park” where people can visit Saturday, May 20 from 9AM to 11AM, in front of the OceanAire apartment complex between Pine and Pacific Avenues on Ocean Boulevard, to learn the history of park and provide feedback.

Well, asking the public about those decades-old plans kinda for the first time since 1989.

Santa Cruz Park and Victory Park in DTLB. Courtesy of Gruen Associates.

The city actually reached out to the public back in December of 2019 and again in February of 2020 about updating the design guidelines—only to be shut down by Le Pandemic. 

Now, the city has a genuinely full, viable plan for what is being dubbed as a linear park—but don’t quite expect a High Line experience: There are certainly stretches which can be interconnected almost seamlessly (outside of space for cars to pass or structural interferences) but is perpetually broken up by, well, spaces for cars to pass and structural interferences along the entirety of the park.

The easternmost edge of Victory Park, which stretches between Magnolia and Alamitos Avenues in DTLB. Photo by Brian Addison.

Partially created out of a need to honor what was there before—Victory Park is Long Beach’s first formal park, a stretch of oceanfront bluff that was a recreational and social space long before Downtown Long Beach became, well, the Downtown—and the need to squeeze as much green space as possible in a part of town that has been nearly entirely developed.

And in all frankness, this update needs to be applauded: Sure, it might not quite be as elevated as the High Line but it is, nonetheless, a stretch of dotted-with-disconnects green space that can, with the right design and approach, become a series of mini-assets along Ocean Boulevard. 

The public review period will be open through June 9, 2023. All comments can be provided to Project Planner, Alex Muldrow at “Popup at the Park” will take place in front of the OceanAire apartment complex between Pine and Pacific Avenues on the south side of Ocean Boulevard on Saturday, May 20, from 9AM to 11AM.

Brian Addison
Brian Addison
Brian Addison has been a writer, editor, and photographer for more than a decade, covering everything from food and culture to transportation and housing. In 2015, he was named Journalist of the Year by the Los Angeles Press Club and has since garnered 25 nominations and three additional wins. In 2019, he was awarded the Food/Culture Critic of the Year across any platform at the National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.
- Advertisement -

Stay in the Loop!

Don't miss out on the latest in culture, food, and urban life. Get exclusive updates right in your inbox.

You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the link in the footer of our emails. For information about our privacy practices, please visit our privacy policy.

Trending Now

Foundation ready to be laid for Long Beach’s first new seaside hotel in decades

Crews have officially dug what will be the base for a new seaside hotel on the bluff at 2010 E. Ocean Blvd., replacing the former, aged Beach Plaza Hotel. It marks a dramatic shift for the project, which has been in a tumultuous adventure toward realization since its inception in 2007 and it finally breaking ground in February earlier this year.

Wooden frame begins to go up on 271-unit development at 3rd & Pacific in DTLB

Expected to be completed in 2025, the 271-unit project replaces a much more ambitious project—a 23-story tower with 395 units—that was proposed in 2019.

A look inside Long Beach’s largest infrastructure project: Connecting Colorado Lagoon to Marine Stadium

The $32.5M project will bring a new tidal flow channel between Colorado Lagoon and Marine Stadium that hasn't been seen since the 1960s.

Long Beach Lost: DTLB’s ‘Gray Ghost’ was an art deco masterpiece that could have been a library

My ongoing series, Long Beach Lost, was launched to examine buildings and spaces that have either been demolished or were never even in existence—including the forgotten tales attached to existing places. This is not a preservationist series but rather a historical series that will help keep a record of our architectural, cultural, and spatial history.

Gaucho Grill’s beach concept to open on sands of Long Beach in summer; new look at interior

After years of setbacks, the largest of the beach amenity upgrades—those at Alamitos Beach—will have its tenant, Gaucho Grill, finally open this summer.

Explore Topics

- Advertisement -


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here
Captcha verification failed!
CAPTCHA user score failed. Please contact us!