Korean Businesses Seek to Mark District

Members of the Korean Chamber of Commerce have renewed their efforts to build a pair of cement monuments on Garden Grove Boulevard, after years of trying to find an identity for the Korean-dominated section of town.

If the group can win approval from a previously reluctant City Council, the cement signs will formally identify the strip between Brookhurst Street and Beach Boulevard as the Korean Business District.

Tom Kim, founder of the Korean Chamber of Commerce and a Garden Grove Boulevard insurance agent, said the group plans to spend about $30,000 for the monuments, which would “signify that we are here.”

City Manager George Tindall said a city study conducted several years ago recommended that the area be identified as the Korean Business District.


“If we want to make it [Garden Grove] better and economically stronger for all of our population, we need to attract new investors and business people,” he said. “One way is with these signs.”

Residents have objected to the designation of a Korean business district in the past, arguing that it would divide the community.

City Councilman Ho Chung said the monuments, which would be designed with “a unique shape to express Korean culture and heritage,” should help bring tourist dollars into the city while sending a message to foreign investors that Garden Grove welcomes new business.

“I don’t believe it’s a problem with the City Council, but I don’t know how many people aren’t in favor,” he said. “I’m concerned about it, and would like to try to convince my constituents to be in favor of this. It could benefit everybody.”


Kim said a formal proposal will be brought to the council in the next few months.

Signs of the Times?

Korean district may get recognition