The future of Long Beach being considered:

A collection of interesting notes taken from the City’s Comprehensive Plan, Master Plan & Planning Board Charrettes.

1. A redesign of Waldbaums shopping center – the only shopping center in Long Beach. Strip stores – bring those stores to the street with parking in the rear. It would compliment the downtown district better.

2. Would Long Beach ever consider licensing bed & breakfasts?

3. Artwork included in building design of new high rises, similar to Portland, Oregon.

4. The redevelopment of the bayfront area located between Long Beach Boulevard and the Long Island Rail Road tracks. Conceptual plans include: a 250-slip marina, “salt air” performing arts center / amphitheater, promenade, five mixed-use towers that would contain residential units, a marine science center, restaurants, A water taxi to Island Park.

5. An architect has been hired by the City to design the Recreation facility rehabilitation project. Upon completion, the facades of the Recreation center and ice arena will compliment one another.

6. The location of the Public Works municipal parking garage on Long Beach Boulevard is considered problematic. In addition to its appearance and the congestion caused on Long Beach Boulevard by city vehicles having difficulty turning into the lot, there is not enough room in the structure for the addition of a natural gas refueling station. As a result, at this time, the City is unable to switch to more environmentally friendly natural gas vehicles.

7. Appropriate placement of bicycle facilities and racks, clear marking of the pedestrian route from the LIRR station to the boardwalk, and provision of shuttle bus service between the LIRR station and beach areas, would act to reduce traffic and beachfront parking needs.

8. The Long Beach Island Landmarks Association have also been working toward the creation of a Long Beach Historic District that would include the West Penn Street blockfront with parcels from National Boulevard to Lafayette Boulevard.

Random Updates

Well the winter is almost officially here and all is quiet here in this sleepy beach town.

I went to Sugo Cafe and liked it. The owner was really nice and they have live entertainment and comedy on the weekends. It’s not your typical Italian food that you would find at Gino’s or Mulberry Street. Being an Italian myself it was pleasantly surprised and not bored. Mulberry Street was a little too boring for me (sorry).

Green Cactus has been open for a few months and I suggest everybody to try it if you haven’t already. It’s a local Long Island franchise and one of the better ones.

Five Guys Burgers is also open. I love the checkerboard / old diner look. I wish them success. Unfortunately I probably won’t eat there that much. When I want a burger, I usually just throw it on the grill.

The Allegria Hotel & Spa (King David Manor) website claims that they will be open for business this March and they are already taking reservations.

No news on the Bayfront development or the Superblock, but it looks like city might consider using Meter parking on the West End of town.. As if parking there didn’t suck already…..

Lido Blvd traffic!! What is the deal?

What’s with the traffic on Lido Boulevard? Lately it’s been getting worse and worse. It took me forty minutes just to drive what normally takes five. Road construction on the boulevard has been making life miserable for us commuters; Making us angry, late for work, and causing us to drive like maniacs as soon we exit the construction zone.

I’ve been monitoring the road work for the past month or so and couldn’t even figure out what the contractors were doing. First they chopped the street up, dug only 2 feet deep, and started filling it in with stone. No pipe work. No sewer work. Nada. It just didn’t make sense! Then it hit me… They are turning Lido Boulevard into an actual Boulevard – a real median with planters, trees, and the works!

According to Wikipedia, a “boulevard (often abbreviated Blvd) is usually a wide, multi-lane arterial thoroughfare, divided with a median down the center, and “roads” along each side designed as slow travel and parking lanes and for bicycle and pedestrian usage, often with an above-average quality of landscaping and scenery.”

This median will certainly spruce up the road and make it scenic, but pretty trees aren’t the main reason for this project. According to this New York Times article, safety is the main reason here; a safe median for pedestrians and bike riders as they cross the dangerous six lane blvd on their way to the beach.

Safety and beauty. Sounds like a win-win situation for all! Unfortunately, it comes with a price of making our lives miserable until the project is complete. So when will that be? I did some digging around the Nassau County website and I found the project page: Project 60010 – Lido Boulevard Improvements. According to the project schedule, everything should be complete June 17, 2008!!! What do you expect? I will update this article with more info as soon as I get it.

Allegria Hotel & Spa

The Allegria Hotel & Spa website is now live.

http://www.allegriahotel.com/

Promising “breathtaking views of the Atlantic and the NYC skyline” this Hotel & Spa signals a major change to Long Beach – transforming it from a sleepy beach community into a year round alternative to NYC or fancy Long Island Hotels like the Garden City Hotel. Hopefully it will remain an affordable place to live – buying or renting.

Beach Tennis USA invades Long Beach!

Nothing like strolling down the boardwalk on a hot summer night only to stumble upon a new international Sport – BEACH TENNIS!

Beach Tennis is basically badminton with small tennis rackets and a colorful tennis ball. There are two players on each side and shoes seem to be optional. The event was recorded to be televised on SNY here in New York. I can’t really comment on any specifics such as who won… but I can just tell you that the event was fun, funny, and most of all FREE!! Here are some pictures:

I have seen the future and it is good (or bad)

The City of Long Beach is changing and it’s changing fast. In the next 20 years, half the buildings along the boardwalk will most likely look like this:
I’m talking about The Aqua; Luxury Oceanfront Condominiums. Our very own “mini-Miami” – only 50 minutes from Manhattan. It’s only inevitable that Long Beach goes this route; The commute is great. The beach is great. It’s a great community with great food, culture and events. Plus you feel like you are on vacation 365 days a year.

Long Beach has lots of buildings. More than I thought actually… I would love to actually go around, take photos, and tag them all. Perhaps a future project? Well anyways, ‘The Aqua’ is still under construction and looks to be completed early 2009. For those who want to take a glimpse into the future of Long Beach, check out the official Aqua website. For good or bad, I foresee more of these types of buildings popping up all over the area.

Moon

The moon is extremely pretty tonight. If anybody in the NY area happens to stumble upon this blog within the next hour or so, please do yourself a favor and look at the moon. Of course once again I only have my iphone, so this photo does the moon no justice.

Farmer’s Market (update)

So I decided to ride my bike over to Kennedy Plaza to check out the Farmer’s Market. It was cute, but small, but cute, but small, but very promising. There were 3 stands – fish, fruit, and veggies. It was somewhat crowded which gives me hope that more vendors will eventually join the few that were there. Anyways, here are some pics. Sorry again for the quality, but all I had on me was my iphone.

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