Blogging Bayport Alameda

September 17, 2018

For one ravishing moment Italy appeared

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

One of the things on the City Council’s agenda for tomorrow is yet another Sister City application.  This time for a small (population of 13000) town in Northern Italy.

I’m confused as to why the budget to support this relationship is coming out of the FISC fund.  I’m hopeful that this question will come up because I’m not sure where the nexus between Sister Cities and lease revenue for warehouses lies.

Anyway, we have yet to resolve the whole Wadi Foquin sister city relationship as of yet and it looks like the City Council is moving on to much much lower hanging fruit before tackling an issue that came first and has proven to be a lot more controversial than a sea side Italian town will be.

From the staff report:

As a seaside community, Varazze has a natural affinity with the island City of Alameda, with both sharing an intimate relationship with the sea.  As port cities, Varazze and Alameda are endowed with commercial and business opportunities that will be further enhanced as Sister City partners through mutual exchanges of information about each other’s blue and green economies.  While Alameda and Varazze share some common seaside city living and cultural characteristics, there is much more to learn from each other as partners.  Visiting delegates can study the academic institutions, arts, healthcare system, sports, and traditions unique to each locality.

Now that we’ve fully entered the campaign season we’ve seen the term “blue economy” used fairly regularly.   But according to the World Wildlife Fund there’s no real common usage for the term yet.  But it sounds vague and positive right, so folks can really put any definition on it local to meet their own needs.   From WWF:

During the past few years, the term “Blue Economy” or “Blue Growth” has surged into common policy usage, all over the world. For some, Blue Economy means the use of the sea and its resources for sustainable eco- nomic development. For others, it simply refers to any economic activity in the maritime sector, whether sustainable or not.

It would be really helpful, particular if someone is hosting a business-y type candidate forum, to get a better understand of what “blue economy” means locally rather than allow people to fill in that term with their own hopes and dreams.

But you know what it would be really helpful for Alameda delegates to study and learn more about when they take their Italian vacations under the auspices of doing City “business”?   They could learn about the historic density and the pedestrian friendliness in its town center.


  1. “It would be really helpful, particular if someone is hosting a business-y type candidate forum, to get a better understand of what “blue economy” means locally rather than allow people to fill in that term with their own hopes and dreams.”

    Lauren, helpful? Perhaps. Realistic? No. Why? Politicians is gonna spin to fit their agenda. Yes, even in little ol Alamedatown. How many do we have running for Council and Mayor? 9? Try getting a consensus from that bunch.

    Comment by abronto4900 — September 17, 2018 @ 6:44 am

  2. Because Alameda is an Island, the Blue Economy was one of the industry sectors that the Economic Development Strategic Task Force identified as a priority sector to support and grow.

    Here are a few of our existing blue economy assets:

    Bay Ship & Yacht Co.
    Yacht Clubs
    Ocean Clean Up Project

    Comment by Karen — September 17, 2018 @ 8:02 am

  3. Still curious what happened to the apparently no-longer-active Sister City relationship between Alameda and Lidingö, Sweden. I visited Lidingö a couple of years ago and enjoyed it very much. If I knew how these things work, I’d have brought greetings from our Island City to theirs!

    Comment by trow125 — September 17, 2018 @ 11:02 am

    • Agreed! Lidingo is always missing from the lists these days. For anyone who grew up here, Lidingo was our only sister city, for decades.

      Comment by vigi — September 18, 2018 @ 1:05 pm

    • Lidingo Sweden sister city relationship was formed several decades ago most likely by one individual that had some sort of ties to Lidingo. Unfortunately, when those ties are severed, so are the exchanges between the sister cities. This is why the Alameda Sister City Association is so integral. The board of directors entertains sister city proposals from community members that show an interest in a city abroad. These community members have to provide proof that there is a group of people in Alameda and a group of people abroad (often the governing officials and their staff) that can and will sustain a sister city for years to come. There are other critiera that the board looks at to evaluate if the relationship is viable. If all of the criteria is met then a new sister city committee is formed and the proposal is presented to city staff who then prepares a presentation for council to review and vote on. Our Varazze Sister City is a perfect example of how this system works.

      Might there be a group of Alameda residents that would like to reinstate Lidingo, Sweden?

      Comment by Karen Fong — September 19, 2018 @ 5:51 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Blog at