Vallejo's St. Vincent's Hill residents want more livable neighborhood

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Anonymous

Vallejo, CA

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#1
Jan 25, 2013
 

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Vallejo's St. Vincent's Hill residents want more livable neighborhood
http://www.timesheraldonline.com/news/ci_2244...

Not everything about the past can easily be categorized as "the good old days."

Some St. Vincent's Hill Historic District residents, however, are seeing benefits in returning their streets into a modernized version of their hey day -- with narrow roadways, big front lawns, street parking and lots of trees meeting roundabouts, bicycle lanes and bicycle boulevards.

Sarah Nichols and Judy Irvin, executive director and board member, respectively, of Solano Advocates Green Environments (SAGE), have turned their sights on their own neighborhood and how it becomes a more livable, convivial place. In fact, it's an effort they and others have undertaken in various fashions for the past five years.

To that end, Nichols joined with her neighbors to draft a cultural landscape report, titled "Mean Streets to Green Streets." It would return residents their tree-lined front yards by narrowing the roadways.

Everyone understands historic buildings. But the environment around them is ephemeral," Nichols, a landscaper, said. "So, you do historic research and you come up with solutions that are historically feasible for the area."

In recent years, the federal historically registered neighborhood has had its share of street prostitution and crime to grapple with, and residents have publicly voiced their concerns about it.

And now, neighbors are looking to their next step -- actively improving the area.

The two women say they want to begin with Sacramento Street, a four-lane road now used less to handle high traffic volumes than to facilitate speeding traffic.

The city was able to widen its old streets in the 1960s to 80-foot right of ways that had been established at the city's founding by General Mariano G. Vallejo. He had envisioned grand boulevards in the pre- motor vehicle times, Nichols said. During the redevelopment boom of the 1960s, streets like Sacramento were widened to four lanes, in anticipation of unrealized traffic upticks.

Nichols said she is aware of public concerns about putting all available city money into public safety. She agrees that is worthwhile, but adds that beautification also should have a place in the city's budget.

"When you plant a tree, you pant hope," Nichols said. "Fifty years from now, we can give something to the next generation who lives here... Beautification, if not dealt with now -- if not now, when?"

At 6 p.m. Monday, SAGE will make a presentation to the city's Beautification Advisory and Code Enforcement Commission -- of which Nichols is a member -- at Vallejo City Hall on the cultural landscape report. They also went before the city Housing and Redevelopment Commission earlier this month seeking a $325,000 federal Community Development Block Grant to pay for engineering drawings for their plan.

Irvin, an architect by trade, said she does not see changes to her neighborhood happening overnight, but hopes that the city will consider seriously revising its street standards for all city historic districts.

"Visions are powerful," Irvin said. "You can talk about problems all you want, but when you have a picture .. it's easy to get behind.... I do see a meme being planted in people's brains."
Wanglow

Vallejo, CA

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#2
Jan 25, 2013
 

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Gimme some o dat GRANT MONEY; for $325,000.00 I hope the "drawings" are gold plated. I hope the Housing and redevelopment commission doesn't think that's a warm rain trickling down their legs.
the village crapper

Benicia, CA

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Jan 25, 2013
 

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these people are crazy and totally self-serving. we have too many small factions wanting just their own bubble to be wonderful. we don't have a village, just a mish-mash of huts with hands sticking out of each one. and still after all this wonderful, the streets are still crawling with goons with guns.
Anonymous

Vallejo, CA

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Jan 25, 2013
 

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People that own these heritage district and st vincent hills homes are not poor. They live in wealthy neighborhoods and can afford to come up with their own monies to pay for any plans for street improvements.
GEE

Oakland, CA

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#5
Jan 25, 2013
 

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Good idea. I know this specific area has proud property owners, butů

What is of interest is that one neighborhood appears to be of the opinion that they should have priority over other neighborhoods that also "theoretically" deserve to become beautified and updated/restored or what ever .....

To put it mildly, my neighborhood is as deserving of taxpayer money than any other in Vallejo, where is the fairness? By having a seat on the Beautification Advisory and Code Enforcement Commission and living in the district applying for this Grant seems not only self serving but appears as a conflict of interest, but who really cares and what difference does it make now?

Even new developments will one day become and be historic, warts and all.
They also need a caring hand to undo the many mistakes, as an example made by planting the wrong trees in inappropriate places and neglecting them from day one, sidewalks that were constructed in a way that make them unfriendly to users .... and when they are cracking and heaving the property owner has to pay to repair this piece of mismanaged city property, etc.

My residental street, although nice and wide and treed (and I like that) to accommodate traffic to flow as well as parking for those well to do Vallejoans with one vehicle per inhabitant, is in dire need of maintenance. No amount of personal involvement, landscaping, sweeping and weeding of the gutters will mask the yearslong neglect of non maintenance. Can I get a Grant to reverse all of that?

I am not passing anything to my heirs, but want to leave what I do have so future nonrelated generations of residents can be proud of this city, the whole city not just a single portion of it.

So yes, the idea to improve on the once thought of improvement over what was, is a good idea, but if you want to restore your property/district to its glory as you perceive it at the present time and thereby hope to gain value by tapping the taxpayer "again", better open your own wallet to make it happen.

"Street Standards" should be adhered to city wide, not just in the "Historic District".
shiddy smitty

Benicia, CA

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#6
Jan 25, 2013
 

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well put gee, we have multiple small factions with self-interests alone, from employee groups to neighborhood groups.
And Then

Vallejo, CA

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Jan 25, 2013
 

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And then we have a bunch of complainers and miscreants that do nothing but run their mouths on topix all day and expect one day to have their concerns magically appear somewhere as a priority for someone to work on.

Want something done, get involved and do it. At least these people care enough to get involved with their neighborhood and do something about it. You certainly won't find them having pity party on Topix.
shiddy smitty

Benicia, CA

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Jan 25, 2013
 

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And Then wrote:
And then we have a bunch of complainers and miscreants that do nothing but run their mouths on topix all day and expect one day to have their concerns magically appear somewhere as a priority for someone to work on.
Want something done, get involved and do it. At least these people care enough to get involved with their neighborhood and do something about it. You certainly won't find them having pity party on Topix.
you seem to be close to this situation. do you know what happened at the meeting where they wanted the money to fix up their neighborhood?
And Then

Vallejo, CA

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#9
Jan 25, 2013
 

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Not close at all. I live on the East Side with neighbors like those who live in St. Vincent Hill who don't sit back and cry about everything and get involved to make things better for our neighborhoods. I'd rather have neighbors like the ones in St.Vincent Hill and my own then to be living next to pitty party snipes.
shiddy smitty wrote:
<quoted text>you seem to be close to this situation. do you know what happened at the meeting where they wanted the money to fix up their neighborhood?
shiddy smitty

Benicia, CA

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#10
Jan 25, 2013
 
ok, then, but do you know what happened at the meeting where they asked for the money? i want some for my neighborhood too, so i want to see how they did.
GEE

Oakland, CA

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#11
Jan 25, 2013
 
And Then wrote:
And then we have a bunch of complainers and miscreants that do nothing but run their mouths on topix all day and expect one day to have their concerns magically appear somewhere as a priority for someone to work on.
Want something done, get involved and do it. At least these people care enough to get involved with their neighborhood and do something about it. You certainly won't find them having pity party on Topix.
So why are you on here? Letting off some steam by calling people "miscreants"?
1.somebody who does wrong: somebody who behaves in a dishonest, malicious, or otherwise contemptible way.
Synonyms: troublemaker, scoundrel, mischief-maker, malefactor, wrongdoer, criminal, reprobate, offender, villain, lowlife.
Hmm ....

Getting involved in ones neighborhood is a great thing, but it would even be a greater deal if it would not involve large amounts of taxpayer money.

If realligning the streetscape, de and reconstructing, basically becoming new and improved is the intent, we are with certainty talking about a few million and frankly such an amount could profit a whole town, not just one part of the whole pie.

hate them all

Benicia, CA

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#12
Jan 25, 2013
 

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never diminish infrastructure. take this idea straight to hell. where is the optimism that vallejo will get prosperous and the street will be filled with cars? no, these self-serving residents want taxpayers to improve their own little piece of hell. suffer with the rest of us. the nerve to even ask!!
Wanglow

San Leandro, CA

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#13
Jan 25, 2013
 

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Worst aspect of handing out extra tax-payer money is that it would be spent according to the tastes and purpose of a select FEW handlers who have their own personal agendas, whether it be profits for a friend contractor or something like a planting scheme or maybe extra stop signs to further impede the flow of traffic; Whatever.......... look at our own city council; do ANY of them really represent what you personally feel about what should be done about Vallejo's problems? Letting a small group of citizens determine what's best for the rest of us doesn't work very well. If Vallejo's representatives REALLY wantd to do something helpful they might suspend permit costs on any PRIVATE funded "improvements".
Sam plays VPOA skin flute

Vallejo, CA

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#14
Jan 25, 2013
 
Wanglow wrote:
Worst aspect of handing out extra tax-payer money is that it would be spent according to the tastes and purpose of a select FEW handlers who have their own personal agendas, whether it be profits for a friend contractor or something like a planting scheme or maybe extra stop signs to further impede the flow of traffic; Whatever.......... look at our own city council; do ANY of them really represent what you personally feel about what should be done about Vallejo's problems? Letting a small group of citizens determine what's best for the rest of us doesn't work very well. If Vallejo's representatives REALLY wantd to do something helpful they might suspend permit costs on any PRIVATE funded "improvements".
LOL!
Yes the only select few thagt should dictate taxpayer spending is the police union..
(t)urd enragement!
anon

Vallejo, CA

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#15
Jan 25, 2013
 
Sam plays VPOA skin flute wrote:
<quoted text>LOL!
Yes the only select few thagt should dictate taxpayer spending is the police union..
(t)urd enragement!
That just cannot be!? We have voted out binding arbitration. We have a judge bankruptcy imposed contract. We have public safety committee review recomendations. We have particapatory budgeting. We have 300+ neighborhood watch groups. We have people power! How can the cops dictate spending in front of all that?
Dickie the enraged -t-urd

Vallejo, CA

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#16
Jan 25, 2013
 
Ah bought and paid for union council majority could still dictate handing out raises and accepting less cops on the street in return. Of course giving the union what they want does not equate to representing the citizens of Vallejo..of course not this is how we came to this point.

LOL!

(t)urd enragement!
anon

Modesto, CA

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#17
Jan 25, 2013
 
Dickie the enraged -t-urd wrote:
Ah bought and paid for union council majority could still dictate handing out raises and accepting less cops on the street in return.
(t)urd enragement!
Vallejo's current council majority is union bought and paid for?
anon

Modesto, CA

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#18
Jan 26, 2013
 
Sam plays VPOA skin flute:
Yes the only select few thagt should dictate taxpayer spending is the police union..
(t)urd enragement!
Reply
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anon wrote:
<quoted text>
Vallejo's current council majority is union bought and paid for?
Dickie the enraged -t-urd

Vallejo, CA

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#19
Jan 26, 2013
 
anon wrote:
<quoted text>
Vallejo's current council majority is union bought and paid for?
The VPOA contract complete with raises was done when the City was still in bankruptcy and the council majority was union bought and paid for.

"cut as much staff as you like, we want to be paid".

(t)urd enragement!
anon

Vallejo, CA

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#20
Jan 26, 2013
 
Dickie the enraged -t-urd wrote:
<quoted text>The VPOA contract complete with raises was done when the City was still in bankruptcy and the council majority was union bought and paid for.
"cut as much staff as you like, we want to be paid".
(t)urd enragement!
So your whiny comlaint from yesterday

(post #14 "Yes the only select few thagt should dictate taxpayer spending is the police union..
(t)urd enragement!")

has nothing to do with todays conditions. You are just wallowing in the past.

Anything in the future has to deal with a council you are happy with, no binding arbitratation, precedent setting contract shredding (????), safety committee review recommendations and a Police Chief you like. Think you may be even able to fit a police review committee in there?

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