While it may be a little challenging to imagine this concrete “shelf” on the south side of the eastbound incline as a bike trail, it is indeed the first appearance of the planned Mark Bixby Memorial Bicycle Pedestrian Path that will span the length of the Bridge Project when completed. The path will connect with the current bike routes in Long Beach and enable bicyclists, runners, and pedestrians to cross the new bridge over to Terminal Island.
The path is named after Mark Bixby, who – at the time of his tragic death in a plane accident – the Long Beach Press-Telegram described as an “Athlete and computer nerd, handyman and musician, dedicated father and charitable community member,” and “a rare breed.” He was “involved in the management of more than $500 million worth of real estate transactions,” had a deep “impact on Long Beach and Southern California,” and “was perhaps best known for his bicycle advocacy… he helped create the city’s Bicycle Master Plan and founded the Long Beach Bike Festival.” He pushed for the creation of bicycle lanes on the Bridge Project, and now they are becoming a reality.
The path will offer two lanes for bikers, runners, and pedestrians to go to and come back from the east Port area. Along the way, there will be a few observation decks built as a scenic overlook for the city, Port of Long Beach, and – in the distance – Catalina Island.
Current plans call for the path to include a turnaround area on the west end of the new bridge. In the future, the path may connect with areas west of the Bridge Project as trails are constructed.