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Andy's Updates is the city of Anaheim's monthly email newsletter, bringing the latest Anaheim news right to your inbox.

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Star Wars

Back in the 1950s, Anaheim teamed with Walt Disney on a dream. Now that dream is going into hyperspace.

On May 31, Anaheim marks another first as Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opens at Disneyland Park.

Our city will be the focus of the galaxy as this eagerly awaited land debuts right here in Anaheim, three months before it comes to Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla.

That’s what’s cool about being home to Disneyland, where Walt’s dream all started.

But it’s more than that. Visitors to Disneyland and the rest of Anaheim help us provide public safety and community services for our residents.

More than half of our general fund, our primary source of spending on behalf of residents, comes from when people stay at hotels, shop or dine here.

We expect to see millions of new visitors come to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, which will help support what we do for our residents.

We’re planning for the opening and will be working to handle the additional visitors to ensure everyone has a great experience.

If you’re planning to visit, or if you live near or often travel through The Anaheim Resort, here are some things to know.

What is it?

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is the biggest expansion of Disneyland Park since it opened in 1955.

The 14-acre land is like stepping onto the set of a Star Wars movie. The land’s big attraction, Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, allows visitors to fly in the starship from the movies.

There’s also a lightsaber workshop, Droid Depot and local watering hole Oga’s Cantina.

Later this year, a second attraction, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, will open at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

Reservations are a must!

From May 31 through June 23, you can only visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge with a reservation to visit the land.

The appeal of Star Wars spans generations with millions of fans across the globe. Many can’t wait to see Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

The reservation system will allow for the management of attendance in the first month to ensure those visiting can enjoy it.

There will be no standby line or other way to see Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge from May 31-June 23.

The staggered opening is good for Anaheim. It allows Anaheim Police and Public Works to plan for an orderly opening and manage visitor traffic flow in and around The Anaheim Resort.

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will open without reservations on June 24.

Getting reservations

Reservations opened and, as expected, were quickly snatched up on May 2.

You can still get a reservation if you stay in one of Disney’s three Anaheim hotels, which have availability. (Thanks if you do — part of that revenue goes directly to our efforts to serve the community!)

Otherwise, you’ll have to wait to visit until after June 24.

Parking

Head to Disneyland’s main parking areas, Mickey & Friends Parking Structure or the Toy Story Parking Area just to the south off Harbor Boulevard.

Disneyland is unique among Disney parks. It’s in a developed area with homes just to the west. As always, we ask everyone to respect the park’s neighbors and don’t park on residential streets.

If you’re using a rideshare service, the drop-off and pick-up area at Downtown Disney is a great pro tip.

Residents

If you don’t plan on visiting Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, you might want to stay clear of The Anaheim Resort around the May 31 opening and in late July, just like you might when a big convention is in town.

We’re taking steps to minimize impacts. But, along with the benefits that come from being a visitor city, there are the additional visitors and vehicles during peak times or special events such as the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

la palma

We love our parks.

And we’re always looking for ways to make them better for our residents.

Now, we’re turning our attention to central Anaheim and one of our oldest parks: La Palma Park.

Opened in 1939, the 21-acre park is best known for hosting soccer games, weekend family gatherings and the annual Cinco de Mayo Fiesta. It’s also the home of Glover Stadium and a recently added dog park with play areas for small and large dogs.

The park has served residents well for decades, but we think it can be even better.

In 2016, we sought input from residents to find ways to help the park better fit their needs.

Drawing on your input, we created a vision for the park that includes three soccer fields — two with synthetic grass and the other with natural — as well as a new playground, walking and running path with exercise stations, outdoor stage and plaza, more picnic tables under a tree-studded plaza, an open-air arena and a new restroom and concession stand building.

In recent months, we’ve been out in the community receiving feedback on the plan.

We’re excited for what’s to come and expect to have an update for residents in the coming weeks.

You can find more information here.

If you’d like to share your input, contact JJ Jimenez at (714) 765-4463 or jjimenez@anaheim.net.

2030

Anaheim is looking to invest $250 million in neighborhoods across the city in the next 10 years.

The 2030 Neighborhood Investment Program, approved by the City Council in April, calls for hearing directly from residents about what they’d like to see in their neighborhoods.

As a first step, Anaheim is providing $250,000 toward a community assessment study that will look at existing city services and facilities as well as resident priorities for the future.

The Anaheim First Neighborhood Leadership Council, a group of residents plus business, community and nonprofit representatives, will conduct the assessment through a series of town halls, other community meetings and an online survey.

Started in 2018 by the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce and Visit Anaheim, the Neighborhood Leadership Council will be made up of 90 residents with 15 drawn from each of Anaheim’s six City Council districts as well as 10 business, community and nonprofit representatives.

All Anaheim residents, community groups, nonprofits and businesses will be able to take part in the Neighborhood Leadership Council’s community assessment, which will provide resident input for the city as we consider neighborhood improvements and services.

Spending under the 2030 program could include:

  • Upgrades to libraries and community centers
  • New or improved parks
  • Roads, sidewalks and parks
  • Expanded public safety services
  • Expanded youth, homelessness, job-training and other programs
  • Strategic economic development benefiting neighborhoods

Funding for the 2030 initiative would come from expected and potential revenue from economic development around Honda Center, Angel Stadium of Anaheim and continued growth in The Anaheim Resort, as well as regular city spending on neighborhood improvements.

For the first fiscal year, which runs from July 2019 through June 2020, we have identified $20 million in city revenue, including $10 million to be borrowed and repaid to a city fund with a healthy reserve, $6 million in state transportation funding and $4 million in money from an existing neighborhood improvement fund.

You can read more about the 2030 Neighborhood Investment Program in our fact sheet here.

You can learn more about the Anaheim First Neighborhood Leadership Council at Anaheimfirst.org.

IMG_1291

It’s our city center.

The hip shops and dining of Center Street Promenade, the Packing House and the MAKE building already make it great. Not to mention the beautiful historic homes, active city parks and other local hotspots along Anaheim Boulevard.

But we know it can be even better!

That’s why we’re asking residents, businesses and ourselves: What’s your vision?

We’re gathering input on what we call the Center City Corridor. That’s the part of the city around the downtown area, stretching along Anaheim and Harbor boulevards between the Santa Ana (I-5) Freeway and the northern limits of our city bounded by the Riverside (91) Freeway.

What do you want to see there in terms of how to get around? What do you want to do when you’re there? How do you think we can make the community better?

You can share your thoughts in our online survey in English and Spanish.

You can find more information at Anaheim.net/C3.

Questions? Call (714) 765-4568 or email ethien@anaheim.net.

Coves

Coming soon, you’ll have a new trail and park to explore in Anaheim.

We’re excited to introduce you to Anaheim’s newest fun spot: Explorer’s Cove at Anaheim Coves.

If you’ve walked the Anaheim Coves trail before, you know it used to end at Lincoln Avenue. Not anymore. We recently completed a 1-mile northern expansion of the trail that will open in June.

You will soon be able to walk, bike, skate or ride a horse along the now 2.5-mile route, stretching along the western bank of the Santa Ana River from Ball Road just east of the Orange (57) Freeway all the way up to Frontera Street, just off Glassell Street and south of the Riverside (91) Freeway.

The icing on the cake of this beautiful path is the play and exploration area, aptly named Explorer’s Cove, we added near the Frontera Street entrance.

Unlike the other traditional brightly colored playgrounds in Anaheim, Explorer’s Cove plays off the natural vibe of the trail, incorporating green and brown colors on the equipment. Colorful nature landscapes cover the walls separating the play area from surrounding homes.

Kids can play in the tree house, climb on the ropes or swing on the zip line while parents get in their workout on the five outdoor exercise stations.

Thirsty? There’s a water bottle filling station, two drinking fountains and even a place for your four-legged friend to grab a drink.

And you won’t find this at any other Anaheim park: There’s a sand pit where kids can dig for concrete dinosaur fossils.

The northern expansion of Anaheim Coves opens June 6. Trail hours are dawn to dusk.

Parking and restrooms are available along the trail at Ball Road and Lincoln Avenue. Additional parking is available along Rio Vista Street between Wagner and Ames avenues.

magazine

Angels Baseball, Mobile Library, affordable housing — these are just a few of the stories you’ll find in the spring issue of Anaheim magazine.

You’ll soon be receiving a copy of this quarter’s magazine at your home or business, and you can also find it online here.

Anaheim’s very own city magazine gives you an in-depth look at what’s going on in our community.

The cover story highlights Angels Baseball’s long history in Anaheim and our efforts to secure a bright future for baseball at The Big A right here in our city.

The issue also covers Anaheim Public Library’s new Mobile Library, which brings books, movies, homework help, fun activities and all the resources of the library right into Anaheim neighborhoods.

It’s got a new look and a new name, so be sure to read all about it.

The magazine also details a plan by Anaheim Police and Anaheim Fire & Rescue to make sure those who live and work in Anaheim Hills know their way out in an emergency.

You can also read up on our efforts to address affordable housing in Anaheim, and the upcoming opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and the economic impact it will have on Anaheim.

More at Anaheim.net/magazine.

Utilities

Summer’s almost here!

While that may be hard to believe, it means things will be getting hotter and drier.

The official drought may be deemed over, but we all know that conservation is a way of life in California.

So now’s the perfect time for a little refresher on ways we can help our environment — and our pocket books — by conserving water.

In celebration of Water Awareness Month this May, Anaheim Public Utilities will host a booth at the Downtown Anaheim Farmers Market on Thursday, May 16, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mention this article for a free gift, while supplies last.

We also offer many rebates for conservation. One of the most popular is our turf replacement program.

We’ve just upped our rebate, so now you can get $2 per square foot of grass you remove from your yard, up to 5,000 square feet. For businesses, you can get a rebate for up to 50,000 square feet.

You can find more information on how to apply, plus tips on making your yard more drought friendly at Anaheim.net/utilities.

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