October 12, 2022
Media Contact: Dorian Bonner
Phone: (562) 570-6137
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
City Council Approves Transformative Investments into North Long Beach, Years in the Making
New Projects Include $36 Million Boulevard Makeover, 84-Unit Townhome Development, and a Possible Expansion of the City’s First Municipal Homeless Shelter
LONG BEACH, CA — Led by Vice Mayor Rex Richardson, the Long Beach City Council unanimously passed three motions approving major projects in North Long Beach on Tuesday. Included in the slate of items is the $36 million Artesia Great Boulevard project, which will improve one of the area’s most highly trafficked corridors from end to end of the city boundary.
“This is a historic investment in North Long Beach,” said Vice Mayor Richardson. “More than a decade of development has gone into this work, and I am proud to see it come to fruition. Uptown is the gateway to downtown, and together we are ensuring that every part of Long Beach thrives and contributes to our city’s bottom line.”
The Artesia Great Boulevard will feature all-new roadways, sidewalks, medians, traffic signal enhancements, bike lanes, drainage improvements, public art, street furniture, bus shelters, and public signage. The $38 million plan is the largest single expenditure on infrastructure improvement in the history of North Long Beach.
The City Council also voted to explore the expansion of the Atlantic Bridge Community, which currently comprises the city’s first and only year-round municipal homeless shelter. The action will begin the process of working with a developer to determine the feasibility of creating 240 new permanent units of permanent supportive housing, additional supportive services, and other resources to the current facilities. Other potential additions include a new community garden, and a market and café to provide transitional employment to those trying to re-enter the labor market.
The exploratory phase will also include several community visioning sessions, in which residents of nearby neighborhoods will be invited to participate in the development process by sharing their desired changes or additions to the endeavor.
Also approved by the Council is the “RTHM” project (pronounced “Rhythm”), which is a proposed 84-townhome community anchoring South Street and Atlantic Avenue. RTHM will be built on vacant land across from the Michelle Obama Neighborhood Library, utilizing new UPLAN zoning guidelines to complement the library and the future site of the Long Beach City College Outreach Center. The development is expected to bring new businesses and restaurants to the area, increasing pedestrian foot traffic and boosting economic activity.
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Elected in 2014, Vice Mayor Rex Richardson represents the 9th District in North Long Beach as the youngest-ever person to serve on the City Council and as Vice Mayor. He is currently in his second term.
Regionally, Mr. Richardson is the Immediate Past President of the Southern California Association of Governments and a member of the South Coast Air Quality Management District Board of Directors, a position to which he was elected in 2020.
Vice Mayor Richardson has earned a reputation as a hardworking leader dedicated to ensuring every Long Beach community receives equitable investment and opportunity. He has brought neighborhood, labor, business, and clergy leaders together to improve economic conditions in North Long Beach and has spearheaded numerous projects to create open space, renew infrastructure and improve residents’ quality of life. He believes that true leadership stems from collaboration and the willingness to become the agent of change.