Search The Tattler

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Emeryville Can't Have What Berkeley Has

Why Can't We Have What Berkeley Has?
Because We're Emeryville, 
We're Not as Good as Berkeley
Did You Forget?


Greenway, Emeryville
At times, as an Emeryville resident, one can find oneself feeling a funny, unfamiliar feeling about one's city. You may have just breezed down the North-South Greenway and had a delightful chat with a neighbor. Or you passed by a piece of public art you've passed a thousand times before, but something new strikes you and you smile. You might stand out at the end of Point Emery and watch the sun set, enjoy a Community Services event at Doyle-Hollis Park, or hold a small get-together and the interesting people in attendance are not just friends from far away, but your neighbors.

This is civic pride. It can sneak up on you.

But don't start patting yourself on the back too quickly. If you start getting such feelings, there are those in town ready to set you right. Chief among them are our City Council members and our School District's Board of Trustees, who want you to remember that Emeryville simply can't have the things that our neighboring cities have. You shouldn't expect so much. We're just a commuter city. We should be satisfied that people from elsewhere are willing to slum it at our regional shopping centers.

The Embarcadero, San Francisco
San Francisco can install highly-visible green bike lanes on their Embarcadero, but Emeryville residents shouldn't get their hopes up. After all, what would CalTrans say if we did something crazy like that? And the repeated insistence of our Bike/Ped committee and our Planning Commission on getting a bike/ped path to break up a super block as part of the Emeryville Center of Community Life project, well that is really just too unreasonable. It's not like that path is in the General Plan or something---er, wait, it is--but still, next thing you know you'll be asking for a path to help get people off of San Pablo as they pass between 45th and 47th streets. That's certainly not possible, even if a private school were to be on the hook to pay for it. Simply impossible.

Harwood Creek - John Muir Elementary
If Emeryville residents got these sorts of things, then the next thing you know they would expect that they could have what Berkeley has. And we know that's not possible. Residents would get the idea that we could have a natural creek running through our school grounds where "children can be found working on art projects, participating in hands-on science experiments, writing in journals, or just playing a fun game of hide and seek."

Now you've completely moved into fantasy land. I mean, it's not like our little City has the power to redirect the path of natural waterways to suit its whimsy. Oh, wait, you mean to say that Temescal Creek already runs right through the Emery Secondary School site? The future site of the Emeryville Center of 'Community' Life? What?! So, we wouldn't have to move heaven and earth? Just bust up a little concrete and maybe try not to cram too many students onto the overcrowded site? Well, there you go again. Now you're thinking that we could have a separate, cute, school dedicated to just our elementary age students. I bet you'd want it tucked away in a residential neighborhood, away from the noxious fumes of San Pablo Avenue traffic, with a playing field, basketball courts, a play structure, and a garden. That's just crazy. Emeryville could never have that. If we did, we'd do whatever it took to shut it down.
Anna Yates Front GateAnna Yates Rear Gate

No comments:

Post a Comment