Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Fred Mayes Jewelers’ Clock Restoration

Today the City of Sacramento Department of Transportation loaded up the only public street clock still remaining on the streets of Downtown Sacramento and haul it away for restoration.

The refurbishing of the clock to the period of its historical significance will take place at the Art Foundry & Gallery Downtown. The clock will be restored to the most recent “art moderne” style at the time it was designated as a City historic landmark in June of 1982. The project team expects the repairs to take the entire summer, with the clock being returned to 10th and J around the first week in September.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Old Sacramento State Historic Park

Today the Planning Commission will hear a Preliminary General Plan/Draft EIR for the Old Sacramento State Historic Park reconstruction project. The current draft plan includes; Horse Car Loop  (circling around Front Street, I Street, L Street, 2nd Street) and 17 mile Railroad Operation, reconstruct buildings of the 1860’s-70’s at the current Old Sacramento State Historic Park, viewing of sunken ship, improved bike trail to the foot of J Street, restore passenger station to 1873 appearance with a restaurant and excursion train boarding down to the Sacramento Zoo and as far as Pocket/Meadowview and Hood area. The formal planning process started in Fall 2010 and public viewing will availlable till Spring 2012. No estimated construction costs have been mentioned yet. Read more here at the California State Parks site.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Funding for K Street Streetscape

The K Street's streetscape project includes paving materials, street furniture, trash receptacles, landscaping, lighting, enhanced intersections and gateway elements and relocations of two Regional Transit ( RT) mini-high platform stations between 8th & 12th Street costing $5,733,111. With Police layoffs and other budget cutbacks now under way I was vary curious as to where the money was coming from to do this project, so here it is: Redevelopment Agency of the City of Sacramento Tax Increment Funds in the amount of $5,328,515, Park Development Funds in the amount of $4,596, Transportation Funds in the amount of $400,000. Tonight the City Council will authorize an additional $50,000 for the project to be used for repair and maintenance of landscape irrigation on K Street.

This streetscape project is a separate development than the opening of K Street to traffic which is expected to cost an additional 2.7 million.

I can’t believe K Street improvements are a higher priority for funding than the funding of having more police on the streets, but that’s where we are today in this city and many others across the country.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Sutter Bridge

Starting Monday and lasting for the next several months, L Street will be closed from 29th Street to Sutter General Hospital while a three level bridge is built between buildings is constructed.

Traffic will be detoured around the construction until the middle of November, while a three-story structure to connect Sutter General and the new Anderson Lucchetti Women’s and Children’s Center is built.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Paying for a new Arena?

I think we all know why the Kings are still in town… passionate fans and a last ditch effort by politicians and local businesses to show that Sacramento can still pull together big deals. Building a new arena is now priority #1, a big spending project that should be done for the greater good of Sacramento.

In the last issue of Sactown Magazine (April/May) there is one section called: “Riverfront: Veto the Vote” that talks about whether the Kings decide to stay or go, and that it's time to start treating the arena issue like every other major project the city has undertake for the good of the people. And that means not asking the people what's good for them.

This method that Sactown Mag., refers to is done by raising bonds with the backing of public money. The Sacramento bond project list is longer than you might think. Just to list a few, there’s the billion dollar airport expansion, $751 million “Capitol Improvement Program” in 1987, both the Hyatt and Sheraton, and the convention center expansion in 1992. None of these projects went to a vote of the people; the city did not wait around and hoping for some wealthy family or company to build for us allowing others to decide our fate for us. All these were done by raising bonds and backing it with public money. The bonds were paid off with funded user fees (where ticket buyer pay a few extra dollars each visit), hotel, car rental, parking, and concessions.

This has been a standard method for several other cities to build big project when private money was not enough to make it happen. Since an arena serves a public purpose, therefore it does not need voter approval.

If our city leaders are serious about keeping the Kings in town, they better look to the past to help finance a new arena in the near future. Take a moment to check out the article here, it illustrates the point much better than I have.