5th District Councilwoman-Elect Schipske Offers Some Initial/Preliminary Thoughts Re Possible Future Uses For Willow/Grand Army Reserve Facility
(July 6, 2006) -- Fifth district Councilwoman-elect Gerrie Schipske, who will take office on July 17, has offered some initial, very preliminary thoughts regarding possible future uses for the 5.5 acre Willow/Grand Army Reserve facility, declared surplus by the feds.
Applying federal law and procedures, the City of LB is in the process of soliciting notices of interest from homeless service providers, state and local government entities and non-profit groups for redevelopment and reuse of the facility.
The Army Reserve center is in a southwestern pocket of the 5th Council district, on the south side of Willow St. at Grand Ave. (west of Lakewood Blvd.) It's across from The Grand event center, just east of LB's Dept. of Health and Human Services and across Willow St. and a few blocks east of the Alpert Jewish Community Center. A business park lies immediately to the south...with a residential area further south and to the east abutting part of the 4th Council district represented by Councilman Patrick O'Donnell.
In emailed comments to LBReport.com, 5th district Councilwoman-elect Schipske says:
I obviously need to get more information about the property, what surrounds it, etc. However, I think it would be perfect site for a joint use between the City and LBCC - a Public Safety Training Facility - where we could offer police and fire training and include an indoor shooting range - also relocate the Eastside Police Substation there - this would free up two park areas now used for police and fire and deal with the noise problem of the firing range. Long Beach could then have a larger police academy - and with LBCC we could become a regional police training facility - similar to the one at Rio Hondo Community College.
As first reported on July 5 by LBReport.com, a posting on LB City Hall's website indicates that under a federal process (stemming from the McKinney Act and associated HUD rules), LB city management is soliciting "notices of interest" from homeless service providers, state and local government entities and non-profit groups for redevelopment and reuse of the Army Reserve Center which has been declared surplus and will be closed.
Under federal law, LB City Hall has been designated the "Local Re-Use Authority" for the property and will conduct a process to prepare a re-use plan for the property that will "balance the economic, social and housing needs of the community." The plan is then submitted to HUD (which can approve it, change it or send it back for additional work).
When ELB's former Navy Hospital was closed (Carson Street near 605 freeway), LB City Hall sought and obtained federal permission to reuse the property as a retail center; today, it's the ELB "Towne Center." Other surplus federal property at the Naval Station and Shipyard was given to the Port of LB. Former WLB federal housing became the site of LBUSD's Cabrillo High School and the Villages at Cabrillo (community-based clinic/social services, 300+ beds for homeless veterans).
ELB 5.5 Acre Army Reserve Center, 3800 E. Willow, Declared Surplus And City Hall Is Soliciting Notices Of Interest From Homeless Service Providers, State & Local Gov't Entities & Non-Profits
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