Tag Archives: Telegraph Avenue
Later this year, three Berkeley business districts will experiment with new approaches to parking aimed at reducing double parking and circling, and making it easier for visitors to find a metered spot.
The effort is part of a new campaign underway by the city — dubbed goBerkeley — and is funded by federal grants to help staff analyze data, collect input from the public and study the impact of changes to parking-as-usual; drivers can expect to see changes start in September and last for a year. … Continue reading »
The owners of one of Telegraph Avenue’s most popular ice cream spots have asked Berkeley officials to revoke the permit for a new ice cream take-out window set to open right across the street, at Rasputin Music.
Tuesday night, Berkeley City Council members heard the appeal, by Cream ice cream parlor, 2399 Telegraph, against Rasputin’s Dream Ice Cream, which won approval in September from the city’s zoning board.
Problem was, a city staff member said the city failed to notify nearby businesses about the proposal. If Rasputin’s permit is ultimately approved, the two businesses would essentially stare each other down across Channing Way. … Continue reading »
The iconic Telegraph Avenue building that formerly housed Cody’s Bookstore could have a new identity before year’s end due to an ambitious project underway by local property owner Ken Sarachan.
Sarachan — who also owns Rasputin Music and Blondie’s Pizza, as well as the vacant lot north of Amoeba Music — describes his “Mad Monk Center for Anachronistic Media” as a two-story complex with a full-service restaurant, performance space, small flower kiosk, take-out coffee counter and analogue media shop that will bring together “the best assembly of records anywhere in California.” … Continue reading »
Nearly 200 Berkeleyans came to Willard Middle School on Thursday night to hear and offer ideas about improving Telegraph Avenue, which has suffered in recent years from declining retail sales, empty lots and plenty of handwringing.
“I have great enthusiasm and great optimism that we’re going to make things happen,” said Mayor Tom Bates after the meeting. “I’m not going to hold back, it’s too important an issue. I’m going to really immerse myself in the issue. I’m not going to let this drop. I have this term of office, and I intend to fully maximize what I can do.”
Bates said there are a number of factors that mean current efforts could really mean a new start for Telegraph, particularly the three concrete projects planned for the unused corners of Telegraph and Haste, and the university’s redevelopment of the student center on Bancroft Way, which could encourage much greater activity and flow of pedestrians. … Continue reading »
The owners of the property at 2441 Haste St. at Telegraph, scene of a devastating fire in Nov. 2011 that destroyed the five-story Sequoia Apartments, have submitted a proposal to the city of Berkeley to build a new 42-unit, 43,000 sq ft apartment building.
The project would also include retail spaces intended for two restaurants that burned down that night: Café Intermezzo and Raleigh’s Bar & Grill.
The proposal, which was submitted to the city by Kenneth and Gregory Ent on Friday, Feb. 22, would be designed by Berkeley architects Kahn Design Associates, working with developer ROEM. … Continue reading »
The University of California Police Department has created a new nighttime special duty unit in Berkeley to step up its efforts to address safety and security needs south of campus.
UCPD’s Lt. Eric Tejada said the move was prompted by a desire to be more agile in responding to crime trends.
“We’ve developed a special projects unit without affecting our normal staffing,” he said
The unit comprises one sergeant and four officers and will focus on issues such as underage drinking, robberies and drug dealing in People’s Park. The unit, which began patrolling on Jan. 7, will normally work from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m Wednesdays through Saturdays. … Continue reading »
Construction workers have been spotted on Telegraph Avenue in the former Andronico’s location north of Derby Street, which is set to feature a CVS store and pharmacy in the 26,455-square-foot space.
Bill Cantrell, superintendent of construction for Eleven Western Builders, Inc., estimated recently that work could be completed by April, “but we don’t want to raise false expectations,” he said. (Ted Friedman, who has written for Berkeleyside, shared this information with us.) (Update: After this story was published, Berkeleyside heard from a CVS spokesperson who said they plan to open the store in May.)
Cantrell told Friedman that the new CVS, at 2655 Telegraph Ave., will include a discount liquors section. … Continue reading »
FROM CLOTHES TO PIZZA Landlord Ken Sarachan has applied to open a new “family and student oriented” eatery — serving salads, gourmet pizza and pasta — named Biondi’s Cafe, at 2360 Telegraph Ave. You may remember it as Wet Seal, which has closed. (Thanks to Charles Siegel for the tip.) Architect Mark Thieme said, in his application to the city, the space “will feature a bar and restaurant seating with a bistro style atmosphere.” Interior improvements will include “a new commercial kitchen, open seating areas, bar type seating, accessible restrooms and a production lift” for storage on the existing mezzanine. The cafe will seat about 80 people, with a capacity of 150. The space has applied for permission to be open from 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily, and could offer live music. The application is set for review before the Zoning Adjustments Board on Jan. 10. … Continue reading »
Berkeley Design Advocates has suggested many good ideas for revitalizing the Telegraph Ave. shopping district, and I think the most important is their proposal to make Bancroft and Durant two-way, which would allow us to widen sidewalks in key locations.
In the picture, you can see that the campus side of Bancroft has a fairly attractive sidewalk with trees, while the south side of the street has a narrow, bland sidewalk. Imagine how different this picture could be if we made Bancroft two-way and widened this narrow sidewalk by 10 feet. We would have room to plant trees and add cafe seating on this side of the street, making it an attractive shopping street facing campus.
Business improved dramatically when the city widened the sidewalk on Center St. just west of campus, and we could do the same by widening sidewalks on the blocks of Bancroft adjacent to Telegraph and on the block of Durant east of Telegraph. … Continue reading »
By Ted Friedman
The 30th annual Telegraph Avenue Holiday Street Fair opened this weekend, but crowds were sparse at times because of the rain.
Booths went up Friday morning under a light drizzle, which worsened by 1 p.m. Early Saturday afternoon, umbrellas went up during a downpour which lasted around an hour and a half. It was mostly overcast on Sunday.
“It was not a good day for me,” Clifford Seely, 79, a jeweler who has been selling at the fair for 30 years, said Friday as he packed up to leave around 3 p.m.
“It was worth my time, but not as good as last year,” said David (Doc) Sammon, a regular Telegraph Avenue vendor. … Continue reading »
The future of Telegraph Avenue was the focus of a special work session of Berkeley’s City Council on Tuesday evening. Where most discussions of Telegraph concentrate on the many problems of the area — declining retail sales, vacant lots, troubling street behavior — Tuesday was filled with positive images and ideas for the avenue.
At the center of the discussions was one concrete project — the University of California Berkeley’s Lower Sproul Plaza redevelopment — and one ambitious series of new ideas, created by Berkeley Design Advocates following their design charrette last April. … Continue reading »
On Nov. 6, Berkeley voters will decide whether to approve a controversial ordinance to ban, in most cases, sitting on sidewalks in the city’s business districts from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Measure S is Berkeley’s second attempt to pass a law limiting where and when people can sit on sidewalks. (A 1994 attempt, which included lying on the sidewalk as well, later was repealed by the City Council, after initial approval by voters. The ACLU challenged the law before it went into effect and, in 1997, “a newly elected Berkeley City Council voted to repeal the sit-and-lie ban.”)
Supporters of Measure S have poured more than $90,000 into the campaign, while those opposed have raised just under $16,000, according to campaign reports filed with the city clerk’s office. (See a breakdown of the contributions at Berkeley’s Voter’s Edge.)
The proposed ordinance counts among its proponents developers such as the Beacon Group (which owns 2150 Shattuck, the old Power Bar building) and Panoramic Interests (which sold its large property holdings to Sam Zell’s Equity Residential REIT and now is involved in infill development); opponents include the ACLU of Northern California and Patricia Wall of the Homeless Action Center.
Posts related to the measure have resulted in more than 1,000 reader comments on Berkeleyside. The proposed ban has spurred coverage in local, regional and national media outlets. … Continue reading »
Craig Becker, owner of Caffe Mediterraneum on Telegraph Avenue, says that since an encampment of young travelers, including their dogs and belongings, made their home a block from his coffee shop, his business has seen negative growth and declining sales. In an Opinionator piece published today, he argues that the nomadic youth are not to blame — it’s the city’s fault for allowing this behavior to continue year after year, and he encourages people to vote yes on Measure S.
Berkeleyside welcomes … Continue reading »