For more than a decade, the City of Los Alamitos has encouraged the development of a walkable and vibrant town center. The underlying vision for the Los Alamitos Town Center Strategic Plan began as the City evaluated a new future for its Town Center over 10 years ago through the Katella + Los Alamitos Commercial Corridors Plan (2010), followed by a more comprehensive assessment in the General Plan Update (2015). In 2015 the City also updated the zoning code to allow mixed use, with physical streetscape improvements shortly following. Although the General Plan and mixed-use zoning code set the policies and standards for a mixed-use Town Center, a concept of its physical form has not yet materialized. Los Alamitos now faces the challenge of creating a destination at the intersection of two 9-lane arterials.
The Los Alamitos Town Center Strategic Plan is an important step to revitalize, reimagine, and strengthen the heart of Los Alamitos—to tangibly and directly re-create the central commercial node of the city and establish a pedestrian-oriented town center at the intersection of Katella and Los Alamitos Boulevards, in the physical center of the city.
This Strategic Plan builds upon these previous planning efforts and developing a series of urban design and placemaking strategies to illuminate a clear pathway to entitlements that are attractive to developers and help achieve City priorities.
This market-based, urban design plan and strategy for the Town Center will clearly illustrate to private real estate interests the potential of properties in this area and will help attract the scale and type of development desired by the City. In this way, the Strategic Plan is also a marketing tool for the City’s economic development efforts.
The Los Alamitos Town Center Strategic Plan is funded through the State of California’s SB2 grant program to help cities identify opportunities for housing to meet their Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) allocation, and to develop planning strategies to streamline residential development in those areas.
This Strategic Plan is informed by meaningful engagement with stakeholders, property owners, councilmembers, commissioners, and nonprofit leaders. Its dynamic, ‘kit of parts’ approach articulates a flexible development strategy that can adapt to market disruptions and defines implementation strategies with incentives for private-sector developers or public-private partnerships.