City expects First Street park to open in September

Staff photo File photo of First Street Park as seen through the fence.

Formal transfer of title to Seal Beach anticipated at Sept. 13 council meeting


The fence surrounding the park on First Street may come down in September, based on information from the Seal Beach assistant city manager.

“The majority of final punch list items for River’s End Park are now complete and the plants within the property have had sufficient time to properly establish,” wrote Patrick Gallegos in an Aug. 17 email.

“The formal transfer of the land title for the park from Shea Homes to the City is currently anticipated to occur at the September 13th City Council meeting,” Gallegos wrote.

“Pending approval of the title transfer by the City Council, River’s End Park will be opened to the public within a few days following Council approval,” Gallegos wrote.

City officials have been optimistic before. On June 7, Les Johnson, who at the time was director of the Community Development Department, told the Planning Commission that the city was preparing to open the park in late July.

Johnson said at the time that the city was waiting for fencing to that would separate the tot lot area of the park from the abutting San Gabriel River bike path. “There’s a safety concern there,” Johnson had said.

The fence, however, remained up and the park will apparently not open until after the summer of 2021 is over.

In February 2020, a spokesman for Shea Homes told the Sun they expected the park portion of the development project to be completed by summer of 2020. As everyone knows, the pandemic derailed a lot of plans for a lot of people, businesses, and governments.

The opening of the park would mark the end of the long-running saga over the property that currently belongs to Shea Homes, but once belonged to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

For a chronological history of the property, see “Park construction on former DWP land to begin in November,” posted July 6, 2018, at