Mayor to focus on downtown, Telegraph, bike sharing, minimum wage, at State of the City address Wednesday

Mayor Tom Bates

Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates will deliver his State of the City address Wednesday at Berkeley City College. Photo: Courtesy of Mayor Tom Bates

Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates will focus on four topics Wednesday in his State of the City address: the renaissance of downtown, proposals to raise the minimum wage, the bike sharing program that is slated to launch next year, and the revitalization plan for Telegraph Avenue.

The address, which is open to the public, takes place at the Berkeley City College auditorium Wednesday, April 30, from 5:30-7 p.m. (Reservations are requested. Scroll down for details.) 

All four areas have been covered extensively by Berkeleyside in recent weeks and months:

Screen shot 2014-04-28 at 12.07.17 PMRead about the renaissance of downtown Berkeley, which includes a new 16-story hotel, many new apartment buildings, and a new Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. The latest focus is on plans to reconstruct the BART Plaza (Constitution Square), which could include renovation of the BART entrances, new bus shelters and a redesigned courtyard. There is a preliminary design open house Monday, April 28, from 4:30-7 p.m. at the Brower Center.

Read about the minimum wage issue, where Bates is proposing that a number of East Bay cities, including Berkeley, join together to enact a regional minimum wage.

Bike sharing womanRead about the bike sharing program that is planned for Berkeley, that should see approximately 300 bikes stationed around the city for public use.

Read about the revitalization of Telegraph Avenue, the latest development for which involves a crew of ‘ambassadors’ cleaning up the street in a beautification effort.

Mayor Bates will also touch on the expansion of the city’s role in fighting climate change, his office’s 2020 Vision for education, and progress in transportation, development, and community resources in different areas of the city.

Admission to the address is free, but seating is limited so registration is required. Register and print confirmation at berkeleystateofthecity.eventbrite.com.

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  • DisGuested

    I like the “Mayor Tom Bates” credit line in the photo. Shades of “Boss Jim Gettys” in Citizen Kane. Though I would settle for The Tweed Ring in a heartbeat at this point.

  • Diversity Champion

    I, for one, am disappointed that Mayor Bates is trying to decrease Berkeley’s vibrant economic diversity with his minimum wage scheme.

  • Vladislav_Davidzon

    As a business owner (for over 15 years now), I support an increase in minimum wage. If you can’t pay your employees the bare minimums, you really have no business being in business, plain and simple. Although Berkeley certainly has a metric ton of truly idiotic anti-business policies, raising minimum wage isn’t really a meaningful concern given the profile of the kinds of businesses we really need to attract in order to create a truly thriving economic environment. The minimum wage should also however be more around $15-17/hour to truly make a positive economic impact.

    Even Henry Ford understood that paying people decently was good for the economy and his own business. From what I’ve heard, Australia has had a $16 minimum and hasn’t had a depressions since they passed it. It’s really not rocket science.

  • Completely_Serious

    How about: Spiked Pensions, Deep Potholes, Redistricting, Parking Meter Experiment Gone Awry and other pertinent topics?

  • andrew johnson

    Will the mayor explain why the city is using public funds to carry out his personal vendetta against a single councilmember?

  • Transparency

    How much do you pay your employees? How many do you have? How many of them are full-time workers who receive health care and benefits as part of their employment package?

  • Digholeinserthead

    henry ford is a ridiculous example. He paid his employees what he paid them VOLUNTARILY. Minimum wage in prison is $0.25 an hour and its what people end up making when they are priced out of the labor market.

  • joanie

    How about more public parking lots to lure people back to downtown, and away from the all present meter maids.