City of Long Beach 
Public Information Office
411 W. Ocean Blvd, 
Long Beach, CA 90802

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # 032221
City of Long Beach Opens Augmented Reality Challenge for Submissions
Developer community invited to develop AR applications that will help re-activate Downtown Long Beach
Ryan Kurtzman
Smart Cities Program Manager

Long Beach, CA - The City of Long Beach is inviting members of the developer community to apply for the Long Beach Augmented Reality (AR) Challenge. AR is an interactive experience, provided through a set of technologies, that superimposes digital data and images atop a real-world environment. The Long Beach AR challenge will invite participants to imagine and develop AR applications that re-activate Downtown Long Beach and celebrate its historic past, diverse present, and limitless future.

“Long Beach is always on the cutting edge; I’m thrilled that our community will be able to harness AR in a creative, interactive way,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “I encourage our students, developers and other creative thinkers to form teams, have fun and participate in this great competition.”

The City is calling on innovators, thinkers, entrepreneurs, start-ups and solution makers of all skill levels to rise to the AR Challenge. Individuals and teams that are selected will choose a physical space in Downtown Long Beach for their immersive AR app, receive technical mentorship support, and compete for a share of $14,000 in total prize money in an interactive exhibition event in August 2021. 

In alignment with the recently launched Long Beach Accelerator and Smart City Initiative, the AR Challenge supports the City’s efforts to encourage new investments and partnerships in the local technology ecosystem. Challenge participants will have the opportunity to pilot a sustainable business model using Facebook’s Spark AR platform, deploy a proof of concept in Downtown Long Beach, and receive technical feedback from AR experts.

“The Long Beach AR Challenge is aligned with the Smart City LB Initiative, recently approved by City Council, in that it aims to cultivate local expertise and build up our local tech ecosystem,” said Technology & Innovation Department Director Lea Eriksen.

For more information, or to apply for the Challenge, visit Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis through May 7, 2021.

The Long Beach AR Challenge is made possible with generous support from US Ignite and Facebook Reality Labs. The City is also partnering with the California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IIE) and Augmented Reality Long Beach (ARLB), a local AR technology firm. 

About the City of Long Beach
Home to approximately 470,000 people, the multiple award-winning and innovative City of Long Beach offers all the world-class amenities of a large metropolitan city while maintaining a strong sense of individual and diverse neighborhoods nestled together along the California coast. As a full-service charter city, Long Beach is home to the Queen Mary, Aquarium of the Pacific, several museums and theaters, a highly-rated school district, Long Beach Airport, the Port of Long Beach, as well as many award-winning City departments such as Health, Parks, Recreation and Marine, Development Services and more. The City also has a highly respected university and city college, two historic ranchos, five hospitals, five golf courses, 171 parks, miles of beaches, marinas, bike paths and a Bike Share program.

For more information about the City of Long Beach, visit Follow us on social to keep up with the latest news: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

About Technology and Innovation
The Technology and Innovation Department provides a centralized resource for technology deployment and support throughout the City. It is our mission to provide a customer-focused environment that integrates people, processes, and technology to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of City services. To learn more about Technology and Innovation, visit:

About the CSULB Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
The mission of the CSULB Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship (IIE) is to provide programming and guidance for innovators and entrepreneurs that leads to success. The IIE is a central hub for innovators and entrepreneurs in Long Beach, with programming and services to support long-term economic growth that is inclusive and sustainable for our diverse community.

About ARLB
Augmented Reality Long Beach (ARLB) is a local AR development company that focuses on entertainment and educational AR experiences within the city of Long Beach.