Admiral Kidd Park
Long Beach, California
City of Long Beach
11.5 Acre Park
APWA Project of the Year
In March of 2011, the City of Long Beach rededicated the newly renovated and expanded Admiral Kidd Park. At a construction cost of 2.6 million dollars the existing park was renovated and expanded from 8 acres to 11.5 acres. Included in the 3.5 acres expansion was an existing city street that was abandoned and demolished allowing for a seamless expansion and direct tie to Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo High School which has a student population of four thousand. The park, which is named after Naval Rear Admiral Isaac C. Kidd, features two play structures themed after two naval destroyers which carried Admiral Kidd’s namesake. Together they are fully accessible by ramp as they sit docked in an ocean of blue rubber surfacing.
“…bio-swales add to the parks character with their native trees, shrubs and meadow grasses reminiscent of a riparian creek.”
Exercise stations and chess tables, both identified as needs by the community, encourage fitness of the body and mind. In addition to adding a new soccer field, the existing soccer field and basketball court were upgraded with new lighting. The Basketball court also received a new acrylic surface with Volleyball overlay. ADA accessibility issues were resolved by redesigning the entrance to an existing health center and providing a better connection to a newly renovated and expanded parking lot. A perimeter walking path connects all the parks elements including themed raised planter areas and iconic tile and stone pilasters. These pilasters frame the view into the park and draw inspiration from the community’s “plaza” vision for the park. The majority of the tile in the park was selected from a palette of ocean and earthen colors, to compliment the bio-swales and drought tolerant plantings. Tile accents on the pilasters match the adjacent schools green and black colors.
The design challenges of the site include large existing trees and a nearly flat topography. Proper drainage was achieved by means of an interconnected bio-swale system which collects and cleans water before it is allowed to percolate or run-off from the site. The bio-swales add to the parks character with their native trees, shrubs and meadow grasses reminiscent of a riparian creek.
“The park, which is named after Naval Rear Admiral Isaac C. Kidd, features two play structures themed after two naval destroyers which carried Admiral Kidd’s namesake. “
Designed with maintenance and operational costs in mind, the existing irrigation system was expanded and upgraded utilizing the city’s existing standard smart controllers. In addition climate appropriate natives and drought tolerant shrubs and grasses were selected to ease maintenance and conserve water. Many of the materials selected are durable, cost effective, and easily maintainable including precast site amenities and tile finishes. In many places anti-graffiti coating was utilized easing long term maintenance.