Jun 29, 2019
by Sarah Glade Gurney
Rei Blaser, President of the Sebastopol Downtown Association, encourages locals to enjoy our historic downtown this summer. She invites everyone to shop at the Annual Sidewalk Faire, from Friday July 19th through Sunday the 21st. Merchants will offer amazing discounts and guest vendors will line Main Street.
She continues, “Join us for a fun night of Swing Dance lessons to a live band at the dhyana Center on Friday, July 19th starting at 6:30pm.” The dhyana Center is upstairs in the Basso Building, at the intersection of North Main and McKinley Streets. It’s well worth a look for those who’ve never been up there.
Also downtown this summer, the newly launched program called Friday Nights Arts + Beats + Eats continues with guest musicians at People’s Music, just a few doors south of the dhyana Center on the same side of the street. “The program has training wheels on this year. There are many ideas and few volunteers, so it will take time to gel,” Rei comments. Support this original weekly event and the businesses who bring it forth.
The Center for the Arts contributes to our casual summertime with its free Patio Series each Sunday from 2-4 pm, now through August 11th. The musical line-up of local talent is varied, the art activities fun for children and adults, and the venue relaxing. “Bring your own art supplies and sketch the band,” the poster suggests. The world class Art Gallery will be open at no charge, with beer, wine and light snacks available outdoors, at 282 South High Street, just a block west of Main Street. This is a perfect activity after the Farmers Market.
These two new music scenes expand on the Wednesday evening tradition in Ives Park, “Peacetown, a beautiful place to be.”
To avoid surprises, like Sebastopol experienced with Caltrans’ painting green bike lanes without any notice, Daniele Petrone, Project Manager for Hotel Sebastopol, offers the community this update:
“We recently resubmitted our building plans to the City after incorporating feedback from various Departments. The City will review our plans a second time as we move towards a final building permit. This should take one to two months, after which we will go out to bid the construction contract. Groundbreaking depends on the timing of these steps, but currently construction is planned to commence in the early Fall [emphasis added].
In terms of construction specifics and impacts, it's still a premature for us to be able to give concrete answers, but generally:
1) The first step will involve site work as we prepare to dig the basement. The basement itself will be the biggest activity for the remainder of 2019.
2) Construction activity will mostly be limited to our parcels (the main lot and the lots on Brown Street), but eventually there will be some road reconstruction that will happen on both Brown and Depot Streets (including sidewalk widening and other street improvements).”
Daniele assures the community, “We definitely want to minimize our impact on Petaluma Ave given its importance in the town's circulation network, so it's quite unlikely that we close any lanes there unless absolutely necessary (and if so, it will not be all lanes, likely a shift in lanes utilizing the on-street parking spaces).
As we approach groundbreaking, we'll develop a Construction Management Plan for City approval. As a part of that plan, we'll reach out to neighboring businesses about construction plans and impacts, and will also provide them with periodic updates throughout construction.”
“The Council is taking proactive steps towards sustainability by creating this new Sub-Committee,” according to Vice Mayor Patrick Slayter. “Walking, bicycling, using public transit, and, in particular riding the Electric Local Shuttle #24 are among the most environmentally-efficient modes of transportation available, with many benefits: reduction of GHG emissions; easing traffic congestion; the need for fewer parking places, freeing up more space for humans; social engagement; and recreation.”
The Council will discuss other actions to take about climate change at its July meeting.
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