The winter issue of Buena Park Today published earlier this week filling in the “Center of the Southland” on local happenings. First among the features was the excitement that the city's skyline has begun to change. No, the Peanuts gang isn't building another roller coaster over at Knott's Berry Farm, but construction is well underway for “The Source at Beach.”
The highly touted shopping center on the corner of Beach Boulevard and Orangethorpe Avenue is being developed on a 12.5 acre plot and promises to offer a “world-class retail and entertainment experience.” But will it save Buena Park?
The most significant development project in decades for the city, The Source at Beach will be the handy work of M&D Properties. They're the folks behind Plaza Mexico in Lynwood. As the newsletter to Buena Park residents mentions, restaurants, retail outlets, entertainment, office space, a Hyatt Place Hotel and residential units are on their way.
A conceptual video of what's to come looks like a cross-section between the Crystal Cathedral and the GardenWalk.
The first phase of The Source at Beach is slated to be completed around this time next year. The Buena Park city council moved forward late last month on supporting the concept of a $3.4 million dollar project to beautify and brand Beach Boulevard as well as the 91 freeway off-ramps with their efforts running parallel with the timeline of The Source.
As the steel beams go up on the Buena Park intersection, will the project thrive? Other development areas have a reputation for flopping. A litany of empty storefronts surround the Krikorian movie theater at the Buena Park Mall. (Did that Sky Bar ever open?)
Knott's Berry Farm makes more than half of its revenue during the surface street clogging days of Halloween Haunt. The most notable thing happening on Beach Boulevard these days is the Bodies Exhibition at the shuttered Wax Museum. My artist friend Sal Lopez and I touted backyard parties and binges at Tacos Mexico over other Buena Park attractions in the Weekly's 2013 Summer Guide.
With that backdrop and reputation for development duds, can The Source be a force? Stay tuned!
Follow Gabriel San Román on Twitter @dpalabraz