Ryan Smolar Selected New Creative Community Consultant For Uptown Property-Based Improvement District

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Ryan Smolar

Ryan Smolar

The North Long Beach Uptown property-based improvement district, epi-centered at Artesia and Atlantic, is hiring a creative community consultant to help expand the area’s renaissance.

“I’m excited to be supporting this area’s amazing potential”, said Ryan Smolar, “My hope is to help connect Uptown’s community, economic and cultural enterprises to new resources and relationships that help them thrive together.”

Ninth District Councilmember Rex Richardson has been a driving force behind the creation and amplification of the Uptown Renaissance and lead the charge to hire Smolar.

“Uptown is on the road to a renaissance,” says Richardson, “We’re securing an incredible future for North Long Beach and we’re tapping Ryan to help us expand our capacity to flourish as a well-connected, creative and cultural district.”

Smolar will report to Sean Duren, the Executive Director of the Uptown Property and Community Association (UPCA), who has setup the organization’s clean and safe program, is overseeing facade improvements and implementing new Uptown arts programs and events like the Creative Corridor and Uptown Word poetry slam.”

“Our first 18 months have been focused on establishing a clean and safe program, which in part has resulted in a reduction of serious incidents to zero.” said Sean Duren, Executive Director of the Uptown improvement organization, “Now we’re moving towards things like incubating the new economy by integrating closely with youth and creatives and the local food and maker movements.”

Smolar, who’s been a creative force in Long Beach for over 10 years is no stranger to North Long Beach. In 2009, he spearheaded a collaborative community-written book, “Book by Authors: North Long Beach Anthology” about the area’s history and hopes with over 70 local artists and authors.

At the UPCA board meeting residents also rejoiced. During public comment, long-time North Long Beach community advocate, LaVerne Duncan remarked: “You’ve made a wonderful choice, not just for the businesses, but for our community as well.”

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