Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of City and Regional Planning


City and Regional Planning


Umut Toker


The site area for the Orizaba Design District is located in central Long Beach, California. Historically the physical development of the area has been heavily influenced by the existence of the Pacific Electric Railroad, which has a right-of-way running diagonally through the site. With the existence of the railroads, as well as the Districts proximity to the Port of Long Beach and major thoroughfares, the area has developed as an industrial site.

Despite the industrial nature of the area, starting in 2007 a small group of creative business owners, including architects, graphic designers, interior designers, and others, started to locate in the District, mainly along Coronado and Gladys Avenues. This private investment spurred further development and led to the identification of the site as having the potential to grow into a unique Design District.

Based on these realities, the Orizaba Urban Design Plan seeks to provide conceptual and design principles that will provide the City of Long Beach and local business owners with insight into development opportunities. The Plan envisions Orizaba has a safe, pedestrian friendly District that builds on the existing character of the City. To accomplish this, the Plan incorporates elements of site analysis and community meetings into conceptual development, which is further refined to create Plan objectives. The Plan objectives address elements of land use and circulation and explore ways the District can utilize sustainable design principles, particularly Low Impact Development. Finally, form-based codes incorporate Plan objectives into clearly defined design standards. The standards, which address elements of building envelopes, streetscape, visual quality, signage and wayfinding, and street furniture, are provided to aid in implementation and the realization of the District’s potential.