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On February 12th, we continued the amazing
transformation of the Washington Middle School Neighborhood with the
opening of the brand new Seaside Park at Chestnut and 14th Street.
Mayor Bob Foster and I dedicated this 2.3 acre park that brings much needed green space and recreational opportunities to a historically underserved neighborhood, with a full-size soccer field, new playground, picnic tables, walking paths, as well as two beautiful murals, one depicting the natural beauty of the wetlands that are native to this area, and one honoring famous peacemakers who have made the world a better place, including Mother Teresa, Rosa Park, Nelson Mandela, and the Dalai Lama, among others.
The park joins several other Washington Neighborhood improvements including the 14th Street Skate Park, the new 14th Street Basketball Courts breaking ground in April, the New City Schools Urban Farm, 6 new Habitat for Humanity Homes, new sidewalks, and a lowering crime rate.
Seaside also serves as a tribute to our City's history, being named after one of the first hospitals in Long Beach, Seaside Hospital. Numerous Long Beach residents were born at Seaside Hospital, and many of them were in attendance, including former Mayor Beverly O'Neill. We also planted a tree in Mayor O'Neill's honor for being born on the site when it was Seaside Hospital.
We also dedicated three benches honoring elected officials who helped make the park a reality: LA County Supervisor Don Knabe, Assemblywoman Bonnie Lowenthal, and Former Mayor Beverly O'Neill. This park would not have been possible without the support of these officials, and without a huge investment by our Redevelopment Agency and our Parks & Recreation Department.
But the people who really made this park a reality are the residents and community activists, most importantly, the families in the Washington Neighborhood Association, led by Linda Palacios. It is there vision, their persistence, and their commitment to this neighborhood that ensured this great new public space would become a part of their community. We all owe them our thanks.
The grand opening was a huge success, with hundreds of people enjoying the sunshine, the views, an inaugural soccer game, hotdogs cooked by our great police department, and a chance to enjoy our City's newest park. I am sure it will be the first of many great days for the community at the new Seaside Park.
I look forward to seeing you in the park.
For more information about programs offered at Seaside Park call 562-570-3100
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