Blogging Bayport Alameda

April 16, 2010

Race war to the top

Filed under: Alameda, Election, School — Tags: , , — Lauren Do @ 6:40 am


And so it begins.  Now that the letters to the editors have begun in earnest both in support of Measure E (Parcel Tax) and against, it was inevitable that issues of class and race would be used as a wedge.    The class one we are all familiar with pitting the newbie yuppies against the old school blue collar Alamedans.   But the issue of race is the latest salvo with the latest My Word contributor claiming that Measure E will do nothing to solve the “achievement gap” because there is no written guarantee in the language of Measure E that money will go to “closing the achievement gap.”    The writer makes it sound as though the solution to closing the achievement gap is as simple as going to Paganos and purchasing a few cans “Child Achievement Fixer Upper” and voila!  Instant success!



October 9, 2009

David Burton: Bad habit

Filed under: Alameda, Guest blogging, Transportation — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 7:00 am

Hi, my name is David and, like many of you, I’m addicted to driving. I managed to kick the habit for a while, selling my car and moving to San Francisco. For four years I rode the cable car to work, took the bus on the weekends, and walked a lot. Then I moved to the East Bay and started to fall back into the old habits.

I’ve made decent progress in other aspects of my life – the projects I design at work are getting progressively greener, we recycle close to 90% of our waste at home, we have very drought tolerant landscaping in our yard (I HATE mowing and watering grass) and we have very water efficient fixtures/appliances – but I still can’t get myself out of my car.

In 2007 I was lucky to serve on the City of Alameda Climate Protection Task Force. That task force created a Local Action Plan for Climate Protection. One amazing statistic uncovered in the course of the task force’s work is that 54% of Alameda’s carbon emissions are transportation related.


August 17, 2009


Just a hodgepodge of miscellaneous news

First the BART strike has been averted, proceed as normal folks.   But, according to the SFGate article, some folks may be trying out alternate modes, so if you still want to try out taking the ferry, it’s actually a pretty neat ride.

The lawsuits against Measure H are moving towards positive resolutions, with the Beery case appearing to be more farther along.   Borikas has declined to join up with Beery to work to develop a new parcel tax that businesses will be happy with, preferring to keep the terms of their settlement offer private.  

The petition over at John Knox White’s site has amassed an amazing number of signatures in support of the three school board members under threat of recall.   While the vast majority of signatures are from Alameda residents there are a few non Alameda residents as well showing their support as well.   If you have not yet signed, please do so and if you know of others that would like to show their support as well, please pass along the link.

On that topic, word is that the group organizing the recall effort (S.E.R.V.E. Alameda) will be having a press conference on Friday and have asked permission to do it at City Hall.   Additionally, they want to have a town hall meeting on August 29 to “discuss school district issues” also at City Hall.   It’s a good strategy, nothing adds an air of legitimacy more than having a meeting at City Hall.

The Firefighters have put out their rebuttal document to the consultant report that has been oft quoted by City leaders.  I’ve only skimmed the document, but wanted to put it out there for those interested.

Mark Haskett of the now defunct Central Cinema is looking to take over the Parkway Theater in Oakland.  Redroom posted a bit of an email from the programmer and host Will Viharo who said that talks continue between Mark Haskett and Councilmember Pat Kernighan:

Mark has very specific ideas on how to streamline the original business model. He shares my view that the overhead should be split between a team with specific theater experience and one with restaurant experience, working in concert under one roof. This has always seemed the most cost effective and efficient way to operate this kind of business, as far as I’m concerned.

And last but not least, CASA is hosting two workshops on the Zero Waste Implementation plan, one for businesses and the other for the community at large.   If you can’t make it out to the meeting, you can participate via a Webinar (business and community).  Those meetings are set for Wednesday starting at 8:30 a.m. for the business one.   The community meeting will be at 7:00 p.m.   Both will be held at City Hall in the Council chambers.

But on Tuesday, CASA will be hosting a meeting on Climate Change in general starting at 7:00 p.m. at First Congregational Church Social Hall, 1912 Central Avenue.   The first part will feature Alamedan, Srikant Subramaniam who will talk about the “Science of Climate Change” and the second part will feature Joyce Mercado, green guru, who will talk about “the Art of Making a Difference.”   Seriously though, I think Joyce Mercado knows every in and out about recycling and other such things in Alameda and she makes it accessible to the average person.

May 21, 2009


When I was young I was a big fan of Jeopardy, their Hodgepodge category was always a mystery because it always seemed to have a lot of misc “Potent Potables” answers in it every time I watched.

Here is a hodgepodge of Alameda related items.  

First off, good news for beach goers, the group Heal the Bay has done its annual study of California beaches and there few worries for Alameda beaches.   Check out the scores:

Beach AB411
(April – Oct.)
Alameda Point North A A A+
Alameda Point South A A A+
Crown Beach Bath House A C A+
Crown Beach Windsurfer Corner A A A+
Crown Beach Sunset Rd. A+ A A
Crown Beach 2001 Shoreline Dr. A A A+
Crown Beach Bird Sanctuary A A B


April 24, 2009

I want to ride my bicycle

Filed under: Alameda, Transportation — Tags: , , — Lauren Do @ 6:30 am

I was just reading an article in the New York Times about how the latest “It” thing for fashionable New Yorkers is a Dutch bicycle.  The article had a cute discussion of an attorney that used to ride in his suit and tie before he crashed with another bicyclist — neither were on Dutch cycles — but clearly that doesn’t stop folks in Amsterdam from riding their bikes in all sorts of clothing and, apparently, helmetless.

I think those Dutch bicycles are rather neat, but I have always had an affinity for simple bikes.  My own ride is a pink (yes, pink) beach cruiser complete with child seat in the back and a horn in the shape of a turtle.   I love that bike.   The only thing I am missing is a good basket to schlep stuff in.   Usually I use the child seat if I am childless, but that’s sort of a drag since I always have to be mindful of the stuff potentially falling out. 

This is an interesting excerpt from the NYT article about bike culture:

…George Bliss, who teaches at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, and is the owner of Hub Station, a vintage bike shop in the West Village, believes the best P.R. for everyday biking comes from people outside the biking world, not inside….

Tomorrow, is, of course the big Earth Day Festival at Washington Park, so if you are going to be heading out there, what better way than on your bike?   The weather is supposed to be beautiful and Bike Alameda will be offering Free Bike Valet parking so you don’t need to worry about finding a place to lock up your bike.

April 22, 2009

Things ain’t what they used to be

Filed under: Alameda, Warm Fuzzies — Tags: , — Lauren Do @ 6:30 am

Which is why you should get out to Alameda’s Earth Day Festival  and Sustainable Living Symposium.  It’s what Marvin Gaye would have wanted you to do.   The festivities are this Saturday from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. at Washington Park.   The Sustainable Living Symposium is all a part of the City’s efforts to cut our greehouse gas  emmissions collectively.   What is great about a lot of the programmed activities is that it shows you, regular old citizen you, a few ways to make positive change even if you can’t make the big committments like going all vegetarian or giving up your car.  When Michael Ruhlman waxes poetic about the wonders of duck confit, vegtarianism is not an option, but I digress.

So here is a listing of the events with brief descriptions of what’s going on:


March 10, 2009

Community Meeting Rock!

Lots of good meetings coming up this week, so now is as good time as any to highlight their happenings.  

Elbow Room

First, tonight is the first of two meetings to discuss branch library improvements.   This one will be at the West End Neighborhood Library located on Santa Clara and 8th from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.   The second one will be held at the Bay Farm Neighborhood Library located at 3221 Mecartney Road from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. on Thursday.   

If you are at all interested in the physical improvements of our branch libraries head out to one of those meetings.   The purpose of these meetings are to address floor plans and improvements such as HVAC systems, ADA improvements, technology enhancements, and historic elements.   The historic elements are probably just for the West End branch since I believe the Bay Farm one is on the newish side.   


February 26, 2009

Farm Bay Farm

So here are the results of the very informal poll about what to do about Mif Albright.   You all only voted once, right?   And abided by the honor system that we all learned in grade school right?

  1. Keep it a Par 3 golf course 37%
  2. Open Space 29%
  3. All weather Athletic field 14%
  4. Dog Park 6%
  5. Other: 6%
  6. BMX Bike Park 3%
  7. Passive Park (trails, picnic and play areas) 3%
  8. Land swap with Ron Cowan 3%
  9. Turf Athletic field (soccer and football) 0%


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