Long Beach, CA
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File #: 21-0957    Version: 1 Name: DS - Park Zoning and Dedication ORD1
Type: Ordinance Status: Approved
File created: 9/3/2021 In control: City Council
On agenda: 9/14/2021 Final action: 6/21/2022
Title: Declare ordinance setting aside and dedicating in perpetuity certain lands owned by the City of Long Beach for public park purposes and uses, read the first time and laid over to the next regular meeting of the City Council for final reading;
Attachments: 1. 091421-H-20sr&att.pdf
Related files: 22-0688, 21-0956, 21-0958, 21-0959

TITLE

Declare ordinance setting aside and dedicating in perpetuity certain lands owned by the City of Long Beach for public park purposes and uses, read the first time and laid over to the next regular meeting of the City Council for final reading;

 

DISCUSSION

The Departments of Development Services and Parks, Recreation and Marine have been working collaboratively for more than five years to assure land records, zoning, dedications, and the General Plan designations of parks within the City of Long Beach (City) are accurate, up-to-date, and consistent across multiple regulatory instruments and documents. This current tranche of requests represents major progress toward updating and ensuring appropriate protections for all City parks. On June 20, 2019, the Parks and Recreation Commission recommended the dedication or designation of 28 existing City-owned parks, including any other land use actions needed such as General Plan Amendments, Zoning Code Amendments, and Zone Changes (Attachment A - Parks and Recreation Commission Staff Report). Dedication is the process that applies to City-owned parkland to protect the park in perpetuity for public open space use. The City Charter states that the Parks and Recreation Commission has exclusive authority over all leisure activities in public parks and recreational facilities, controlled or operated by the City; and will recommend to the City Manager and the City Council the dedication of public land for public parks. Together, these regulatory changes provide accurate protections for City parks in perpetuity.

 

Since June 2019, further assessment of the properties has informed the process and land use actions necessary to ensure the protection and preservation of the parks for open space use by the public in perpetuity by ensuring that each of the 28 park properties has the appropriate General Plan Land Use Element (LUE) PlaceType designation and zoning district and is dedicated as parkland. The 28 parks are being grouped by the type of land use actions required; the subject action represents the first batch that encompasses the required actions for 12 of the parks (Attachment B - Site Vicinity Map; Attachment C - Parks Dedication List; Attachment D - General Plan Amendment Maps; Attachment E - Zone Change Maps; and, Attachment F - Dedication Maps), described in more detail below.  Actions include necessary General Plan Amendments, Zone Changes, Zoning Code Amendments, and dedications to protect the parks in perpetuity.

 

Following are the recommended actions for each of the 12 mini-parks, parks, greenway parks and open spaces subject to this action: 

 

1.                     Craftsman Village Park - General Plan Amendment to change the PlaceType designation from Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType; Rezone from two-family residential (R-2-N) to Park (P); and, Dedicate.

2.                     C. David Molina Park - Dedicate.

3.                     Donald Douglas Plaza - General Plan Amendment to change the PlaceType designation from Regional Serving Facility (RSF) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType; Rezone from Douglas Park (PD-32) Planned Development District to Park (P); and, Dedicate.

4.                     Grace Park - General Plan Amendment to change the PlaceType designation from Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType; Merge three lots; and, Dedicate.

5.                     Jenni Rivera Memorial Park - Rezone from Commercial Storage (CS) to Park (P); and, Dedicate.

6.                     Locust Tot Lot - General Plan Amendment to change the PlaceType designation from Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType; Rezone from two-family residential (R-2-N) to Park (P); and, Dedicate. 

7.                     Mary Molina Community Garden - General Plan Amendment to change the PlaceType designation from Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType; Rezone from two-family residential (R-2-N) to Park (P); and, Dedicate.

8.                     Miracle on 4th Street Park - General Plan Amendment to change the PlaceType designation from Neighborhood Serving Center or Corridor Low Density (NSC-L) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType; Rezone from Neighborhood Commercial and Residential (CNR) to Park (P); and, Dedicate.

9.                     Orizaba Park - General Plan Amendment to change the PlaceType designation from Neighborhood Serving Center or Corridor Low Density (NSC-L) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType; Rezone from Two-Family Residential (R-2-N) to Park (P); Rezone 456-square-foot, noncontiguous remnant parcel from Park (P) to Light Industrial (IL) and remove from dedication; Merge six lots; and, Dedicate.

10.                     Pacific and 6th Community Garden - Rezone from Downtown Specific Plan (PD-30) to Park (P); and, Dedicate.

11.                     Pacific Electric Railway Greenbelt - Rezone from Two-Family Residential (R-2-N) to Park (P); and, Dedicate.

12.                     Willow Springs Park - General Plan Amendment to change the PlaceType designation from Community Commercial (CC) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType; Rezone from Medium Industrial (IM) to Park (P) consistent with parcel boundary; and, Dedicate.

 

On July 15, 2021, the Planning Commission recommended to the City Council the approval of dedications and associated land use actions for these 12 parks (Attachment G - Planning Commission Staff Report). The remainder of the parks will be brought forward for dedication and necessary land use actions at a future date, as they have been identified to have more complex boundary and land use issues that require additional resources to support land surveys needed before any land use actions or dedications can be considered for those parks.

 

Brief descriptions of the parks subject to this action are provided below:

 

Mini-Parks

 

A mini-park is a small park serving neighbors within 1/8 mile, generally less than 2 acres in size (General Plan Open Space and Recreation Element, 2002). Land use actions are being proposed for the following 6 mini-parks:

 

                     Craftsman Village Park - This approximately 0.34-acre park, opened in 2012, features craftsman style fencing, entry features and lighting, native landscape, walking paths, and a playground. The parkland was purchased by the former Long Beach Redevelopment Agency, and the park improvements were funded by the Statewide Park Development and Community Revitalization Program. (District 1)

                     Donald Douglas Plaza - This approximately 0.44-acre existing park is one of several publicly accessible open space amenities provided through the buildout of the Douglas Park Specific Plan (PD-32). The community open space was developed as part of the first phase of the Douglas Park Development and serves as the northeast entrance to the overall development. (District 5)

                     Locust Tot Lot - This approximately 0.09-acre park opened to the public in September 2016 and includes a play structure with climbing and exploratory features, benches, bike racks, picnic tables, and a walkway. (District 6)

                     Mary Molina Community Garden - This community garden was created through a family donation of undeveloped land in 2005 to commemorate avid gardener Mary Molina. The Mary Molina Community Garden is managed by Long Beach Organic, which provides garden plots available for community use. (District 1)

                     Miracle on 4th St. Park - This approximately 0.14-acre park was the City’s first mini-park in a new program of building parks on single lots in park deficient areas. Initially leased by the City from the adjoining property owner, the City bought the site in 2004 with Park Impact Fee funds. The park includes a playground, bench seating, turf, mural, and varied landscaping. (District 2)

                     Pacific and 6th Community Garden - This community garden was established in 2001 on a vacant City property acquired by the former Long Beach Redevelopment Agency and was renovated through a Neighborhood Improvement Project Grant in 2011. The community garden is operated by Long Beach Organic and provides garden plots to seniors and the greater public. (District 1)

 

Parks

 

A park is a tract of land, most often publicly held, accessible to the general public, for purposes of preserving natural areas and/or promoting the mental and physical health of the community through recreational, cultural and relaxation pursuits. Land use actions are being proposed for the following three parks:

 

                     C. David Molina Park - This approximately 3.3-acre park, in North Long Beach, opened in 2018 on land that the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency acquired over 10 years prior. The park includes a sports field, shaded playground including accessible swings, landscaping, fitness trail, parking, and restroom facility. (District 8)

                     Grace Park - This approximate 1.12-acre park, opened in 2006, featuring a Picnic Area, Playground, barbeques, benches, a small community garden and pathways. The park was built with funding from the Redevelopment Agency; The California Clean Water, Clean Air, Safe Neighborhood Parks, and Coastal Protection Act of 2002; and the City of Long Beach Park Impact Fees. The park was named after Grace Wiley, a nationally known herpetologist and the first woman in her field. (District 8)

                     Orizaba Park - This approximately 3.8-acre park features a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified community center, playground, skate park, basketball court, and restrooms. Former Pacific Electric Right-of-Way is now part of Orizaba Park, and as such a replica of the Red Car that historically ran from Long Beach to Los Angeles is located at Orizaba Park. Land use actions associated with this park include removing from the park dedication area a small, 456-square-foot, noncontiguous remnant parcel of the former Pacific Electric Right-of-Way located at the southwest corner of E. 14th Street and N. Orizaba Avenue. Given the size, location, and irregular shape of this small parcel, it has limited functionality for park purposes and presents a maintenance and operational challenge. (District 4)

 

Greenway Parks

 

Greenway parks are characterized as large undeveloped green spaces, often a remnant or odd shaped piece of land left over from development, which can be used for casual recreation uses. Greenways can serve to connect or link recreation opportunities throughout a community. Land use actions are being proposed for the following two greenway parks:

 

                     Jenni Rivera Memorial Park - This approximately 3.2-acre park, in Central Long Beach, acquired by the former Long Beach Redevelopment Agency provides open space along the Pacific Electric Railway and was funded with Measure A sales tax revenue.  It features a mural, grass area, and walkway. (District 6)

                     Pacific Electric (P.E.) Railway Greenbelt - The Pacific Electric Railway Greenbelt site served historically as a portion of the Pacific Electric Railway Balboa Line, linking Orange County to downtown Los Angeles. The site provides a walking trail and native California plants. (Districts 3, 4)

 

Natural Resource Open Spaces

 

Open space is any area of land or water that is essentially unimproved and largely devoted to an undeveloped or unconstructed type of use. Land use actions are being proposed for the following natural resource open space:

 

                     Willow Springs Park - This approximately 48-acre site preserves the history of the site as the first water source for Long Beach in 1882. The Willow Springs Wetlands Restoration Project, which opened in October 2017, restored 11 acres of the site that includes a walking loop through a series of water-capturing bio-swales that flow to one acre of restored seasonal wetlands and habitat with native plants and trees, a constructed spring that mimics the original spring that provided water to early Long Beach, a water retention basin that cleans and diverts water to be reused onsite, and serves as an outdoor environmental education classroom. (District 7)

 

The proposed actions consists of the following land use actions being proposed to ensure the appropriate General Plan LUE PlaceType designation and zoning district are applied to each of the parks to protect them in perpetuity as existing, City-owned parks allocated for public open space use. The specific actions include: General Plan amendments to establish the Open Space (OS) PlaceType designations on specific City-owned parks consistent with their existing park uses;  zone changes for existing City-owned parks to the Park (P) zoning district; lot mergers to consolidate parcels; rezoning a noncontiguous, remnant parcel of Orizaba Park so it can have appropriate oversight and be better maintained; and, dedications, as appropriate, for the purposes of developing and protecting City-owned land planned for recreational and open space use.

 

Cumulatively, the proposed actions are necessary to formally dedicate existing parks and open space. These actions are consistent with the goals and policies of the General Plan Open Space and Recreation Element (OSRE) and LUE, to protect parkland for public open space uses and to equitably increase access to park space in communities with the greatest need. The ongoing program (of which this action is a part) to change the land use (PlaceType) designation and zoning district of existing parks to the appropriate Open Space (OS) PlaceType and Park (P) zoning designation is needed to reflect and memorialize the existing park use and to protect the parks by ensuring development regulations that are aligned with park uses.  Lot mergers, as applicable, will be completed through Zoning Administrator hearing and approval. Basic information regarding each subject park, including the existing and proposed zoning and PlaceTypes for each of the 12 parks, is provided in the Parks Dedication List (Attachment C - Parks Dedication List). Positive findings have been made for the proposed General Plan Amendments, Zoning Code Amendments, and Zone Changes (Attachment H - Findings).

 

General Plan Amendments

 

Based on a recommendation by the Planning Commission, General Plan Amendments must be approved by the City Council. General Plan Amendments needed for the subject parks were recommended by the Planning Commission to the City Council on July 15, 2021.  General Plan Amendments are needed for the eight parks listed below in Table 1. All proposed General Plan Amendments are for parks that do not already have the Open Space (OS) PlaceType designation to be changed from their existing PlaceType to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType. Maps depicting the boundaries of the of properties requiring General Plan Amendments to change the PlaceTypes for each respective park are provided in Attachment D. Again, positive findings have been made for each of the proposed General Plan Amendments. No physical construction or change is proposed by this action; rather, the City Council is requested to approve the change of the General Plan PlaceType to reflect the current conditions and operations of these properties.

 

Table 1. General Plan Amendments

Name

Current PlaceType

Proposed PlaceType

Craftsman Village Park

Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN)

Open Space (OS)

Donald Douglas Plaza

Regional Serving Facility (RSF)

Open Space (OS)

Grace Park

Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN)

Open Space (OS)

Locust Tot Lot

Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN)

Open Space (OS)

Mary Molina Community Garden

Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN)

Open Space (OS)

Miracle on 4th Street Park

Neighborhood Serving Center or Corridor Low Density (NSC-L)

Open Space (OS)

Orizaba Park

Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN)

Open Space (OS)

Willow Springs

Open Space (OS) and Community Commercial (CC)

Open Space (OS)

 

General Plan Amendments are proposed for Craftsman Village Park, Grace Park, Locust Tot Lot, and Mary Molina Community Garden to change their PlaceType from Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType. These are all developed parks or mini-parks that are proposed by this action to change their PlaceType to Open Space (OS) to better reflect the City’s development of these properties as parks. PlaceType changes to Open Space (OS) will be accompanied by zone changes to the Park (P) zoning district and dedication to ensure they are maintained as public parks in perpetuity. 

 

A General Plan Amendment is proposed for Douglas Plaza to change its PlaceType from Regional Serving Facility (RSF) to the Open Space (OS) PlaceType. Douglas Plaza is one of several publicly accessible open space amenities planned in PD-32. Changing the PlaceType of Douglas Plaza to Open Space (OS) will create consistency with the proposed Park (P) zoning and better reflect existing park uses. PlaceType changes to Open Space (OS) will be accompanied by zone changes to the Park (P) zoning district and dedication to help protect the park in perpetuity for public open space use. A General Plan Amendment is proposed for a portion of Orizaba Park to change its PlaceType from Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN) to Open Space (OS). Orizaba Park was expanded over time and changing the PlaceType of the remaining portion of the park, which does not already have the Open Space (OS) PlaceType, will reflect the existing park use. The Founding and Contemporary Neighborhood (FCN) PlaceType provides for single-family and low-density housing and neighborhood-serving low-intensity commercial uses and is inconsistent with existing park uses. PlaceType changes to Open Space (OS) will be accompanied by zone changes to the Park (P) zoning district and dedication to help protect the park in perpetuity for public open space use.

 

A General Plan Amendment is proposed for Willow Springs Park to change the PlaceType of the northwest corner of the park from Community Commercial (CC) to Open Space (OS). The Globemaster Specific Plan, adopted on May 18, 2021, included a zone change of the area from Community Automobile-Oriented (CCA), Park (P) to Open Space (SP-3-OS). This General Plan Amendment will facilitate consistency between the PlaceType and zoning per the Globemaster Specific Plan.

 

Zone Changes

 

Zone Changes are required to be approved by the City Council upon recommendation by the Planning Commission. Zone changes for the subject parks were recommended by the Planning Commission to the City Council on July 15, 2021.  The existing and proposed zoning for each of the 12 parks that are part of this action are provided in Attachment C. No physical construction or change is proposed in this action; rather, the City Council is being requested to adopt zone changes to reflect the current conditions and operations of these properties as parks.

 

Zone Changes are needed for ten of the twelve parks listed below in Table 2. Maps depicting the boundaries of the of properties requiring Zone Changes for each respective park are provided in Attachment E. General Plan Amendments are also being proposed for parks on this list that do not already have the Open Space PlaceType designation, to change from their existing PlaceType to the Open Space PlaceType to ensure consistency between the land use designation and zoning of the subject parcels. For each one of these ten parks, the proposed zone change from existing zoning district to the Park (P) zoning district will provide for consistency with the Open Space PlaceType. For one of these parks, the proposed zone change from Park (P) to Light Industrial (IL) cleans up the zoning so that the park can have the appropriate oversight and be better maintained, and is discussed further below. 

 

Table 2. Zone Changes

Name

Current Zoning

Proposed Zoning

Craftsman Village Park

Two-Family Residential (R-2-N)

Park (P)

Donald Douglas Plaza

Douglas Park (PD-32)

Park (P)

Jenni Rivera Memorial Park

Commercial Storage (CS)

Park (P)

Locust Tot Lot

Two-Family Residential (R-2-N)

Park (P)

Mary Molina Community Garden

Two-Family Residential (R-2-N), Community Automobile-Oriented (CCA)

Park (P)

Miracle on 4th Street Park

Neighborhood Commercial and Residential (CNR)

Park (P)

Orizaba Park

Two-Family Residential (R-2-N) and Light Industrial (IL)

Park (P)

Orizaba Park (APN: 7259024902)

Park (P)

Light Industrial (IL)

Pacific and 6th Community Garden

Downtown (PD-30)

Park (P)

P.E. Railway Greenbelt

Two-Family Residential (R-2-N), Pacific Railway (PD-22)

Park (P)

Willow Springs Park

Medium Industrial (IM)

Park (P)

 

All of the above parks will be rezoned from their respective zones to the Park (P) zoning district. Craftsman Village Park, Locust Tot Lot, and Mary Molina Community Garden are mini-parks (14,392 SF; 4,057 SF; and 7,699 SF, respectively) currently zoned Two-Family Residential (R-2-N). Pacific and 6th Community Garden is a mini-park (2,750 SF) currently zoned Downtown Specific Plan (PD-30). Mary Molina Community Garden and Pacific and 6th Community Garden are operated by Long Beach Organic and provide garden plots that are available to the public. All are mini-parks created relatively recently in residential areas to serve the immediate surrounding community.

 

This action proposes zone changes for several parks from commercial zones to the Park (P) zone. These are Jenni Rivera Memorial Park [Commercial Storage (CS)], Donald Douglas Plaza [Douglas Park (PD-32)], Mary Molina Community Garden [Community Automobile-Oriented (CCA)], and Miracle on 4th Street Park [Neighborhood Commercial and Residential (CNR)].  Jenni Rivera Memorial Park was formerly RDA property that opened as a park in 2012. Donald Douglas Plaza (15,935 SF) is located in Douglas Park (PD-32) North, Subarea 1. This subarea, located in the northeast corner of Douglas Park, is intended as a mixed-use commercial district of office, retail, entertainment, restaurant, and hotel uses. Douglas Plaza is one of several publicly accessible open space amenities within PD-32. The community open space was developed as part of the first phase of the Douglas Park Development and serves as the northeast entrance to the overall development. A portion of Mary Molina Community Garden is currently zoned CCA. This community garden was created through a family donation of undeveloped land in 2005 and is currently operated by Long Beach Organic. Miracle on 4th Street Park was the City’s first mini-park in a new program of building parks on single lots in park deficient areas. Miracle on 4th Street Park is developed with a playground, bench seating, turf, mural, and varied landscaping, and should be rezoned from Neighborhood Commercial and Residential (CNR) to Park (P) to be consistent with existing park uses.

 

The majority of Orizaba Park was previously dedicated on December 23, 2003, and is appropriately zoned Park (P). Since 2003, Orizaba Park was expanded through acquisition of blighted industrial properties and developed with various park amenities. The area of Orizaba Park where the basketball court and a portion of an open field were developed is zoned Light Industrial (IL) and is proposed to be rezoned to Park (P) to reflect this expansion and the existing park uses. Adjacent to the west, the area of Orizaba Park, which includes the remainder of the field and a community garden currently leased and managed by Long Beach Organic is currently zoned R-2-N and is similarly proposed to be rezoned to Park (P) to reflect existing uses and to bring cohesive zoning across the entirety of the park. Orizaba Park includes a 456 square foot, noncontiguous remnant parcel of the former Pacific Electric Right-of-Way located in the southwest corner of E. 14th Street and N. Orizaba Avenue. This noncontiguous remnant parcel was dedicated in 2003 (Ordinance No. C-7894). A community organization had received grant funding from Development Service’s Housing and Neighborhood Services Bureau for the improvement and future maintenance of the remnant parcel. Over time, this zoning became a barrier to the proper oversight and maintenance of this corner of the property by the Department of Parks, Recreation, and Marine. In light of the challenging conditions associated with this remnant parcel, Economic Development Department staff have been exploring the possible sale of the parcel to the abutting industrial property owner. As a result, this area is proposed to be rezoned from Park (P) to Light Industrial (IL) to bring consistent zoning across the subject parcel and the abutting privately-owned property. The proposed zone change and removal of the area from the dedicated park area reflect future anticipated use and private ownership of the parcel. The City will then complete lot mergers of the remaining parcels that comprise Orizaba Park, which is discussed further in the Dedication section.

 

A portion of the P.E. Railway Greenbelt between Termino Avenue/8th Street and Bennett Avenue/7th Street was previously dedicated in 2003 and is appropriately zoned Park (P) or Pacific Railway (PD-22). The parcel that is zoned PD-22 includes a commercial building currently operated by Musical Theater West and will retain PD-22 zoning. The parcel at the upper northwest corner (APN: 7254013901) is already appropriately zoned Park (P). The subsequent parcel to the northwest (APN: 7254017901) continues the P.E. Railway Greenbelt, is existing park, and is proposed to be rezoned from R-2-N to Park (P) to reflect the expanded park use. The P.E. Railway Greenbelt from Bennett Avenue/7th Street Ximeno Avenue to E. 4th Street/Park Avenue is comprised of two parcels (APNs: 7241015902, 7250018904) that are proposed to be rezoned from PD-22 (Subarea 12) to Park (P) for consistency with existing park uses. In PD-22, Subarea 12 was previously leased to the operator of a Christmas tree farm; however, park space has since been developed in this area.

 

A 1.3-acre area on the eastern side of Willow Springs Park (APN: 7212009914) is currently zoned Medium Industrial (IM). The area (APN: 7212009021) to the northeast of Willow Springs Park where E. Spring Street and Orange Avenue meet is owned by Signal Hill Petroleum, Inc., and zoned Medium Industrial (IM). To the south of this privately-owned parcel, the 1.3-acre area that is zoned Medium Industrial (IM) is within the City-owned parcel (APN: 7212009914) that is Willow Springs Park and zoned Park (P). The LUE PlaceType for this area is currently Open Space (OS), so the proposal to rezone from Medium Industrial (IM) to Park (P) bring the parcel’s zoning into consistency with the existing Open Space (OS) PlaceType.

 

Dedication

 

The City Charter and General Plan Open Space and Recreation Element (OSRE) provide guidance on dedication and parkland replacement requirements that preserve and protect parks in perpetuity for public open space uses. The City Charter outlines that those areas that have been dedicated or designated as public park or recreation areas of the City must not be sold or otherwise alienated unless ratified by an affirmative vote at a municipal election for such purpose; or after a recommendation by the Parks and Recreation Commission to the City Council and a public hearing whereby the City Council determines that said park or recreation areas will be replaced by other dedicated or designated park or recreation areas on substantially an amenity for amenity basis, and at a ratio of at least two to one (2:1) with an approximately equal portion of the replacement land located in the park service area where the land was converted and an approximately equal portion of the replacement land located in a park service area needing parkland as determined by the Parks and Recreation Commission (LBMC Sec. 905). The OSRE calls for formal dedication of all City-owned parks (Policies 4.2, 4.4, 4.5, and 4.8) and requirement that any conversion of parkland be replaced amenity-for-amenity and acre-for-acre at a 2:1 ratio, with one acre of replacement land located in the park service area where the land was converted and an additional acre of replacement land located in a park service area needing parkland (Policy 4.5).

 

Consistent with the City Charter and the OSRE, the proposed action includes dedicating the 12 parks listed in Attachment C to protect them in perpetuity for public open space use: Craftsman Village Park, C. David Molina Park, Donald Douglas Plaza, Grace Park, Jenni Rivera Memorial Park, Locust Tot Lot, Mary Molina Community Garden, Miracle on 4th Street Park, Orizaba Park, Pacific and 6th Community Garden, Pacific Electric Railway Greenbelt, and Willow Springs. Dedication maps for each of the respective parks are provided in Attachment F.

 

As discussed earlier, there is one exception wherein the proposed action includes a recommendation to rezone a 456-square-foot, noncontiguous remnant parcel at Orizaba Park, located at the southwest corner of E. 14th Street and N. Orizaba Avenue, which was previously zoned Park (P) and dedicated. This area is proposed to be rezoned from Park (P) to Light Industrial (IL) and removed from the dedicated park area to accurately reflect existing use, given the constraints to its use as functional park space, and to facilitate future sale of this remnant parcel to the adjacent owner. While this removes the noncontiguous, remnant parcel from dedicated park area, the 1.2-acre area within Orizaba Park being proposed by this action to be rezoned from R-2-N and IL will be dedicated as park, complying with, and going far beyond, the 2:1 one replacement policy within the required park service area. Additionally, the proposed action dedicates Jenni Rivera Memorial Park (2.9 acres), as well as others within park poor neighborhoods, which provides dedicated park area substantially in excess of that required by the replacement policy and meeting the geographic requirements of the policy to locate replacement parkland in underserved areas.

 

In summary, the areas to be added to dedicated parkland area exceed by more than double the remnant parcel area to be removed from dedication (456 square feet) resulting in a substantial net increase in dedicated park area per the OSRE by the required ratio of replacement area within the park service area where land was converted and within park service area needing parkland.

 

This matter was reviewed by Assistant City Attorney Michael J. Mais on August 24, 2021 and by Budget Analysis Officer Rhutu Amin Gharib on August 16, 2021.

 

Environmental Review

 

In accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), a Negative Declaration was prepared for the Parks Zoning and Dedication Project (Round 1) - May 2021. The environmental report and associated documents were posted on the City website and a notice was published in the Long Beach Press-Telegram on June 1, 2021.  The Negative Declaration has been circulated for a 30-day review period until July 1, 2021 (Attachment I - Negative Declaration ND 01-20). As of the date of preparation of this report, one agency comment has been received from the California Department of Transportation indicating that some of the 12 parks are near, but not expected to have a direct adverse impact to, the State Highway System (Attachment J - ND Public Comments).

 

Public Hearing Notice

 

In accordance with public hearing notification requirements in Long Beach Municipal Code Section 21.21.302, notice of this public hearing was published in the Long Beach Press-Telegram on August 30, 2021. Notices were also provided to select City libraries that are currently open. Notice posting was provided at City Hall. Public hearing notice posters were posted at the entrance of each of the 12 parks. As of the date of preparation of this report, no written comments have been received. Additionally, notice of the proposed action was distributed through the City’s LinkLB e-mail blast system.

 

TIMING CONSIDERATIONS

City Council action is requested on September 14, 2021. Pursuant to Section 21.25.103 of the Zoning Code, this request must be presented to the City Council within 60 days of the Planning Commission hearing, which took place on July 15, 2021. The September 14, 2021 public hearing date was the first available opportunity for the item to be reviewed by the City Council. Lot mergers for applicable parks can then be initiated after City Council’s action.

 

FISCAL IMPACT

This recommendation has no fiscal or staffing impact beyond the budgeted scope of duties and is consistent with existing City Council priorities.  There is no anticipated direct impact on local jobs or economic development; however, this recommendation protects park resources and amenities that promote livable neighborhoods and place-based development. 

 

BODY

[Enter Body Here]

 

Respectfully Submitted,

OSCAR W. ORCI

DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT SERVICES

 

 

 

APPROVED:

 

THOMAS B. MODICA

CITY MANAGER