Beach Streets! Open Streets Comes Back to Long Beach

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If you’re still living in the afterglow from the valley CicLAvia, then you can continue to shine on this Saturday as the City of Long Beach hosts its second open streets event called Beach Streets.

Some people may not believe that Long Beach is the second largest city in LA County, but there is a real mixture of neighborhoods inside, just like Los Angeles, but without the mountains.

Long Beachers celebrating the 1st Beach Street event in 2015

Long Beachers celebrating the 1st Beach Streets event last June

This year’s edition will cover more of a southernly path, covering the downtown area, Broadway Corridor, East Village Arts District and 4th Street Retro Row. If you’ve never been down here, I think you’ll be quite surprised by the early century architecture.

Despite the devastation from the 1933 Long Beach Earthquake, you’ll still easily notice such landmarks buildings as Villa Riviera, the old Post Office Building and the Long Beach Museum of Art.  You’ll also find a number of homes in the California Bungalow, Arts & Crafts and even Art Deco strewn about.

Another feature is that the route will take you by some pretty artsy neighborhoods. You might want to keep your hipster gear on if that’s your thing.

As for the biking side, Long Beach is on the upswing as well. Last week, the city announced it will be launching their bike share program in conjunction to the event.

The City also goes by the motto as the “Most Bicycle Friendly City in America”. Some who live more to the north may disagree, but at least they’re striving to do more.

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The 1933 Landmark Long Beach Post Office

There are also a lot of great bike advocates in the area and I’m super excited that the multi-faceted Danny Gamboa(Ghost Bikes, Empact LB) will be launching a chapter of LACBC called Walk Bike Long Beach this weekend as well. I predict great things coming from down there.

If there’s any drawback to the event, it’s just one thing. The name. Call me old school, but every time I hear it, I only think back to this Rae Dawn Chong classic:

I may just bring a cardboard box along with me and bust out some headspins. Come out this Saturday and in the words of Grandmaster Flash, “Beach Street is a lesson too, because you can’t let the Streets beat you!”