A year ago, we suggested 10 resolutions for 2010 for Berkeley (we’ll have our 2011 resolutions tomorrow). How did our city do?
We went back to look at those 10 resolutions and scored them 0 for no movement (or backward movement), a ½ point for some improvement and a full 1 point for true progress. We have to say that, even with the most generous grading possible, we can only give ourselves a score of four out of 10.
Here are our judgements. Feel free to add your own in the comments.
- Progress in making Downtown a more vibrant, welcoming district. There are signs of improvement. The arts cluster on Addison Street continued to pick up steam, and the success of Gather and Ippuku seems to have spurred a worthy gastronomic hub east of Shattuck. But there are still too many empty storefronts and the end-of-the-year closure of Amanda’s, something of a showpiece for affordable, sustainable food, was a real downer. The effect of Measure R, approved by 64% of voters, remains to be seen. It did show that a healthy majority of Berkeleyans really want change Downtown. ½ point.
- Berkeley High will support science labs. We gave this a very generous half point. BHS did find a compromise that preserved AP science labs and created voluntary science labs for other courses. The half point, however, recognizes that there is a very encouraging optimistic spirit at the high school with the new principal, Pasquale Scuderi. ½ point.
- Transformation of People’s Park into a space the whole community can enjoy. The state of People’s Park (pictured, top) was an issue in the District 7 council contest. Councilmember Kriss Worthington has advocated that the university sell the park to the city, park district or a non-profit group. But there has been no progress that we can see over the past year. 0 points.
- Police cleaning up Civic Center Park. There are still plenty of problems in Civic Center Park and other places in Berkeley. But there has been so much positive action by new Police Chief Michael Meehan, and the level of cooperation between the police and Berkeley High School has soared. We’re not yet at perfect, but it deserves 1 point.
- A better year for local retailers. We wish it had happened, in Berkeley and across the country, but it hasn’t. 0 points.
- A plan for decent lighting and a better road at the south end of Aquatic Park. There are steady improvements at the north end of Aquatic Park, but the south end remains a no-go zone. 0 points.
- The state will stop squeezing the UC budget. Well, that certainly didn’t happen this year. But Governor-elect Jerry Brown is making more encouraging noises. We’ll see. Still, 0 points for 2010.
- Take more time to walk and cycle in Tilden. You’ll have to score yourself on this one. We didn’t do too well, but some of us had a great family walk on Christmas Eve and Tilden was filled with families. A generous 1 point.
- An exciting start-up will make West Berkeley its home for years to come. It’s the nature of the start-up world that we don’t know what might be brewing. Will Wright does have his Stupid Fun Club in West Berkeley. There are plenty of others below the radar, and there’s the encouraging, nascent Berkeley Startup Cluster (more focused on spaces near the university). We remain optimists, so will give this 1 point.
- Mayor Bates will start using his Twitter account. Sorry, still at zero tweets. Oakland Mayor-elect Jean Quan is at 910 tweets and counting. 0 points.