Triangle Park en route to becoming official

A subcommittee of Huntington Beach Community Services met Tuesday to begin the process of officially naming a city park that already has an unofficial name.

The park, which surrounds the Main Street Library, has long been known informally as Triangle Park, but the city never officially named it, said David Dominguez, facilities development and concessions manager for the city.

After meeting, the Parks Naming & Memorials Committee is recommending that the city officially name it Triangle Park. The committee will make its recommendation to the entire community services commission May 11 before the City Council votes tentatively June 6, Dominguez said.

"Someone from the community asked about a park sign, and they wanted to raise funds, and I pointed out that for us to do that, the park had to be officially named, and that triggered the need for the meeting," he said.

There were some who recommended other names during the meeting. Mayor Joe Carchio recommended that the park be named after President Ronald Reagan.

But the overwhelming support was to keep the park as it's known, Dominguez said.

Triangle Park has gone for years without an official name because it was just recently added to the city's park list.

Preserving the park became an issue in 2009 when the city was in the process of approving the Downtown Specific Plan Update, Dominguez said.

Although considered a park by many residents, it was not added until members from the community voiced their concerns, fearing development would take over, he said.

Gloria Alvarez, a member of the Huntington Beach Downtown Residents Assn., who headed the efforts to save the park and is now looking to place a sign in the park, said historic documents and newspaper clips refer to the park as Triangle and even show when it was officially named by the city.

Alvarez said a Huntington Beach newspaper reported in June 1912 that the park was named Triangle Park.

In 1950, the City Council met to review the bids for the construction of the Main Street Library at Triangle Park, she said.

"It doesn't say park land; it specifically addresses Triangle Park," she said.

Somewhere between then and now, city documents showing the name of the park were either lost or fell through the cracks, Alvarez said, partly because records were not electronically kept at that time.

"It's hard to keep all your records straight, and somehow it just got lost," she said. "There are a few people left that can speak to the oral history of Triangle Park."

A city resolution, 2004-09, requires the naming process the city is conducting in this case to take place before a park is named, Dominguez said.

Alvarez said the park and the name should be preserved simply because of history.

"This is a wonderful piece that we can have for tourists. We can use this as a marketing tool to promote the city," she said, adding that Huntington Beach is not just about its waves and beaches.

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