This is the weekly report for the week ending January 18th, 2013.
There will be a special meeting of the City Council on Thursday, January 24th, at 7:30 PM. The specific agenda will be posted next week.
The next regular meeting of the City Council is currently scheduled for Tuesday, January 29th. Please note that there is no meeting on Tuesday, January 22nd due to a scheduling conflict (see item 2 of this weekly report).
- City of Richmond Receives Environmental Award for EasyGo Transportation Program
The City of Richmond, along with its project partner TransMetro, was recently notified that it has received the Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award for the EasyGo (Greenprint) Transportation Program. The award ceremony is scheduled for this Tuesday evening, January 22nd, in Sacramento (necessitating cancellation of the City Council meeting).
According to the State of California Environmental Protection Agency website:
The Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award (GEELA) Program is California's highest environmental honor. The program recognizes individuals, organizations, and businesses that have demonstrated exceptional leadership and made notable, voluntary contributions in conserving California's precious resources, protecting and enhancing our environment, building public-private partnerships and strengthening the State's economy.
The annual Governor's Environmental and Economic Leadership Award Program is administered by the California Environmental Protection Agency, in partnership with the Natural Resources Agency, Department of Food and Agriculture, Business, Transportation and Housing Agency, the State and Consumer Services Agency, Labor and Workforce Development Agency, and the Health and Human Services Agency.
GEELA Award recipients are chosen in 12 different categories based on their strength in eight specific areas including results, transferability/scalability, environmental/ resource conservation impact, economic progress, innovation and uniqueness, pollution prevention, public health and environmental justice.
The objective of Richmond’s EasyGo transportation project is to embed transportation services and programs into existing and proposed land uses in the Richmond community to reduce vehicle trips and/or replace them with clean fuel powered trips in the City; reduce vehicle miles travelled; and promote and encourage the use of transportation methods that promote clean air, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and create a healthier community.
The program has been piloted at the Richmond Village development and is being managed by TransMetro under a contract with the City. For more information on EasyGo, please visit the City’s website concerning this program by clicking here.
Vice Mayor Jim Rogers provided the initial introduction of this transportation concept to the City Council, which approved the project in October 2011. Lori Reese-Brown is the City staff project manager for the program.
- University of California to Hold Public Information Session on Long Range Development Plan for Proposed Richmond Bay Campus Project
On Wednesday, January 23rd, the University of California will hold a scoping meeting for the environmental analysis of the Long Range Development Plan for the proposed Richmond Bay Campus. The meeting will be held from 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM at the Richmond City Council Chambers at 440 Civic Center Plaza.
The Richmond Bay Campus is the preferred site of a second campus for the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, and is also planned to host a substantial, expanded presence for UC Berkeley at the site currently known as the Richmond Field Station.
The scoping meeting will be an opportunity for members of the community to hear an overview of the Long Range Development Plan for the proposed project, to comment on the scope of the proposed environmental review for the plan, and to share any concerns. Comments will be received and considered in preparing the Draft Environmental Impact Report for the Long Range Development Plan, but no action will be taken at the meeting. Scoping meeting comments will be given the same consideration as written and electronic comments received during the scoping period. The Notice of Preparation (NOP) and more information about the project can be found at: http://richmondbaycampus.lbl.gov/.
- Richmond Business is Finalist in East Bay Innovation Awards
The East Bay Economic Development Alliance (East Bay EDA) is spotlighting some of the most significant contributors to the East Bay’s unique culture and legacy of innovation. Out of the 85 nominees, three Richmond-based companies, Ekso Bionics, Nutiva, and the West Contra Costa Business Development Center made the initial list, and Ekso Bionics emerged as one of the 16 finalists.
Ekso Bionics relocated to Richmond from Berkeley in April 2012. Since 2005, Ekso Bionics has been pioneering the field of bionic exoskeletons to augment human mobility. Ekso is a wearable robot or exoskeleton that powers people with lower extremity paralysis or weakness to get them standing up and walking.
The 16 companies and organizations, selected by independent industry professionals after a public nomination, are being recognized not only for being instrumental in advancing the region’s culture of innovation, but also for contributing to regional prosperity. The selected finalists will be recognized at a gala event on January 31, 2013, at the Fox Theater in Oakland. At the event, East Bay EDA will also announce their first-ever Innovation Award winners. To register for the event go to www.eastbayeda.org/iawards.
- City of Richmond Installs New Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
On Thursday, January 10th, the City celebrated the installation of three electric vehicle (EV) charging stations with a ribbon cutting event at the Richmond City Hall. These newest EV charging stations are located in the City parking lot on Barrett Avenue, and were donated by Charge Point, one of the world’s largest, independently owned charging station providers in the United States. Based in Silicon Valley, Charge Point has more than 10,000 installed charging stations worldwide with more than half of all electric vehicle drivers using Charge Point to charge their electric vehicles. Mayor Gayle McLaughlin cut the ribbon to officially open the charging stations, as a Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf “charged up.”
The City has set a goal of 100 EV stations by 2015, and working with residents and businesses is viewed as a key factor in achieving that goal. Adding EV stations encourages the sale of electric vehicles, helps the City comply with government policies, and positions the City as a leader in this field. The EV stations also demonstrate the City’s commitment to energy security, environmental stewardship and economic EV momentum. Electric vehicle charging stations and electric vehicles are viewed as an integral component to an efficient and flexible transportation plan that accounts for differing lifestyles and incorporates numerous options for travel and day-to-day activities, including buses and bicycles.
For more information, contact the City of Richmond, City Manager’s Office at (510) 620-6869. Or visit the City’s website at: www.ci.richmond.ca.us.
Special thanks for this successful ribbon cutting event go 1to ChargePoint, TransMetro Inc., the City of Richmond Public Works Department, the City of Richmond IT Department / KCRT, and Lori Reese-Brown of the City Manager’s Office.
- 6th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King J. National Day of Service
Urban Tilth, in partnership with Friends of the Richmond Greenway and the City of Richmond, are hosting a number of volunteer projects on January 21st from 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM along the Greenway in addition to community art projects, entertainment, kids zone, free food and bike valets.
- Single-Use Bag Ordinance Draft EIR
RecycleMore released the Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for a Single Use Bag Ordinance for 45-day comment period. The public review period for interested individuals and public agencies to submit written comments on the document will end on March 4, 2013.
Copies of the Draft EIR are available for review at the RecycleMore offices, the Contra Costa County Planning Department, and at the planning departments of the cities of El Cerrito, Hercules, Pinole, Richmond, and San Pablo. View the draft EIR by using this link.
- Dornan Drive Tunnel Repair Project
Two weeks ago, TPA Construction Inc. started mobilization for the Dornan Drive Tunnel Repair project. The project will install a drainage system to divert ground water into weep channels and the tunnel will be re-lined with a carbon fiber reinforced polymer laminate. Starting in mid-January, the construction will require one of the two lanes of traffic to be closed during work hours (8:00 AM – 5:00 PM) for the duration of the project. Temporary traffic control will be in place and portable traffic signals will be placed at each end of the tunnel. Please expect delays and limited access for pedestrians and bicycles. The project is scheduled for completion in late Spring 2013.
- New Richmond Program to Reduce Junk Mail
Richmond has a new program to stop unwanted mail at the source. The City is partnering with Catalog Choice to offer residents and businesses a free service to reduce unwanted mail and phone books. Any resident or business in Richmond can create a free account at https://richmond.catalogchoice.org to stop unwanted catalogs, phone books, credit card offers, coupons, and other marketing material received at home and in the workplace. By using the Catalog Choice service, residents help Richmond reduce waste at the source and save money spent on waste collection and disposal.
Visit our www.richmondenvironment.org for more information on the program.
- Recycle Your Holiday Tree
Please recycle your natural holiday tree through one of Richmond Sanitary Services’ opportunities:
- Cut your tree to fit in your green waste cart and set the cart out on any of your regular green waste collection days (preferred method).
- Take your tree to the Golden Bear Transfer Station, located at 1 Parr Blvd, Richmond. Hours: Monday - Friday 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM, Saturday and Sunday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM. Contact: (510) 970-7260.
- Proof of residency in service area is required
- There will be a disposal charge of $8.00 for non-recyclable trees or no proof of residency
- If you are unable to place your tree in the green cart or take it to the transfer station, please call Richmond Sanitary Service customer service office at (510) 262-7100 to arrange for pick-up at no additional charge.
- Business License Renewals
In early December, over 8,000 business license renewal notices were mailed to business owners and landlords with rental property. The City received approximately 3,000 payments during the week of the City closure. Special thanks to Finance Department Staff for assisting the Revenue Division in the tasks of opening, sorting, classifying, posting, endorsing, photo-copying and balancing over 1,500 business license payments. To date, over $1 million in revenue has been posted.
Facilities Maintenance Division: Carpenters are working on the floor at the Senior Annex.
Painters are working on painting the stage at the Nevin Center and are 80% complete.
Stationary Engineers restored heat to the Booker T. Anderson and Nevin
Utility Workers repaired the carpet within the City Council Chambers.
Electricians repaired the lights along the Marina Trail by Vincent Park and Harbor Masters Office, electrical damage in Fire Stations 64 and 68, and street lights on Blume Drive. They also removed a knocked down street light from 23rd Street and McBride Avenue and re-lamped series streetlights in the Parkview and May Valley neighborhoods.
Parks and Landscaping Division: Crews are in preparation for the Martin Luther King Day of Service events happening throughout the City of Richmond. They also continued landscape improvements in the medians on the Richmond Parkway from Hilltop Drive to Giant Road, repaired damaged bleachers at Shields Reid park, continued irrigation wiring troubleshooting and repairs at Marina Green Park, continued maintenance along the Bay Trail from the Marina Bay tennis courts to the Meeker Slough Bridge, completed demolition for new concrete along the park pathway in Marina Green Park, installed mulch along Valley View Road, performed maintenance at Raincloud Park, and completed shrub pruning of Sheldon Pathway.
Richmond Parkway Median Landscaping
The Tree Crew trimmed and pruned trees on 30th Street, Lowell Avenue, Florida Avenue, Lincoln Avenue, and on 23rd Street.
Streets Division: Pavement Maintenance Crews grinded and paved on Tremont Avenue from Pacific Avenue to Contra Costa Street and worked from the outstanding pothole list.
Street Sweeping continued with the commercial and residential routes for the second Monday and third Tuesday through Friday of the month in the May Valley, Vista View, Clinton Hill I, North Richmond, Iron Triangle, North and South Belding Woods, Santa Fe, Coronado, Marina Bay, and Point Richmond Neighborhood Council areas.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments about these or any other items of interest to you.
Have a great week!
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