Not only is Long Beach’s skyline growing, but its plethora of new developments are also attracting top-tier businesses to the city.
That was the message Mayor Robert Garcia sent during his annual “Building a Better Long Beach” presentation on Tuesday, Sept. 24.
Along with updating community members on dozens of development projects that are in the works throughout the city, Garcia announced that SpinLaunch, an aerospace company working to launch satellites, will soon move into a 140,000-square-foot facility in Pacific Pointe East at Douglas Park.
That location — down the street from the 150,000-square-foot space where Virgin Orbit is doing similar work — will spur the two companies to “compete in a friendly way, to see who can get satellites into space faster,” Garcia said.
In the spirit of that friendly competition, Garcia also announced that Virgin Orbit is expanding its Long Beach footprint with a new a 43,000-square-foot assembly facility in Douglas Park.
Garcia expressed his gratitude to both companies for choosing Long Beach as a home base.
“Long Beach, like a lot of the region, is beginning to attract a lot of technology companies and a lot of interest from technology companies that provide really good jobs,” Garcia said. “This is an area that is continuing to grow and we want to encourage.”
Another significant announcement Garcia made Tuesday came in the form of a commitment to local educators.
While Long Beach officials have been tight-lipped about concrete plans for the old City Hall property, which shuttered over the summer, Garcia said during Tuesday’s presentation the city will soon begin discussions with folks at Cal State Long Beach, Long Beach City College and the Long Beach Unified School District about developing affordable housing on the sites specifically for teachers and professors.
“One goal of mine and of the city’s has been to build affordable housing for what we call the missing middle, and that is folks who may not be low-income but still need assistance for housing,” he said. As “an education city,” Garcia added, it’s time to offer that to Long Beach’s educators.
Elsewhere in the city, Garcia said he’s excited to continue to build up the Long Beach Boulevard corridor in Central Long Beach, which has seen a flurry of new projects — many of which include affordable housing — sprout in recent years.
Specifically, Garcia touted the Spark at Midtown, which will offer 94 units for low-income residents, Las Ventanas, which will include 101 affordable units and Axiom, which will include a mix of more than 140 affordable and market-rate units, among others — all of which will soon come to the thoroughfare.
“If you’re exhausted about all of these projects on Long Beach Boulevard, you shouldn’t be, because there’s more coming,” Garcia said. “We believe that Long Beach Boulevard, adjacent to the Blue Line, is going to be an exciting place that will be a great investment and ensure that people in our community, of all income levels, have a place to live that’s also accessible to transit.”