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New Long Beach park will trace an old Red Car route

It’s part of a larger plan to convert a trolley right-of-way into public space

Rendering of bicyclist at park entrance
The park will link up with a bike path at Sixth Street and Ximeno Avenue.
Courtesy City of Long Beach

Construction is set to break ground Saturday on a new public park in Long Beach that will trace part of a long-defunct Pacific Electric Red Car trolley route that served the city for the first half of the 20th century.

The 3.66-acre park, called the Red Car Greenway, will span a diagonal line between Ximeno Avenue on the west and Park Avenue on the east, where visitors of the park can easily access the recently reopened Colorado Lagoon across the street.

At Ximeno and Sixth Street, the park will intersect with a bike path, giving cyclists a natural entry point.

The project site already serves as an informal walking path, but the city’s $1.05 million plan for its redevelopment will equip the park with a concrete trail, lighting, seating, fencing, garbage bins, and new vegetation.

This is one of numerous empty lots along the old streetcar right-of-way, and the city eventually plans to combine a number of them into a larger swath of open space extending from Park Avenue to Loma Avenue, where a community garden has sprouted up along the old route.

A separate stretch of the right-of-way to the immediate northwest of the new park has already been redeveloped and opened in September as Greenbelt Heights Park. Like the park that will get underway this weekend, it offers a paved walking trail and drought-tolerant vegetation.

Rendering of the park’s vegetation