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We made a big announcement yesterday. We've secured $900,000 from a state grant to fix the city's most dangerous intersection, and to jump-start the much talked about Armory Park project that has been discussed for years. The grant will allow us to reconfigure the corner of 7th and MLK, and begin to close down MLK from 7th to 6th to build a new park. We will be turning a dangerous block of roadway, into a beautiful green landscape.
Armory Park is the idea of Brian Ulaszewski, a local architect and community leader. He proposed this park over 5 years ago and has hosted dozens of community meetings and forums to engage the surrounding neighborhoods about the positive impact building a park in this location would have. In addition to solving safety issues, the new park will create green space in a neighborhood that has none.
When I was elected to office two years ago, I promised Brian that we would get this project done, and thanks to his dedication and ideas, we have taken a huge step forward. In addition to Brian, we need to thank our Parks and Recreation team, especially Anna Mendiola, and Dave Roseman our traffic engineer. A big thanks as well to Kraig Kojian from the Downtown Long Beach Associates, the Central Planning Project Committee, the Museum of Latin American Art, the Pacific Island Ethnic Art Museum, St. Anthony High School, and the numerous community members that have advocated for this project.
The next step includes applying for an additional park bond grant to build the park and hosting 5 community meetings to design the details of the park. If you are interested in attending any of these upcoming meetings, below is the information:
May 16, 6:30 p.m.: Pacific Islander Ethnic Art Museum, 695 Alamitos Ave.
May 18, 8:30 a.m.: Downtown Long Beach Associates Board Meeting at Hotel Maya, 700 Queensway Drive.
May 18, 7 p.m.: East Village Arts District meeting at Sipology, 448 East Broadway.
May 19, 9 a.m.: Parks and Recreation Commission Meeting at El Dorado Community Center, 2800 N. Studebaker Road
June 4, 11 a.m.: Craftsman Village Historic District BBQ at 851 Orange Ave.
We should hear about final park bond funding for the construction by the end of the year, and then start construction of this park in 2012.
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