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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Results Are In: Measure R Passes

After a day of general anticipation and some heated races, midterm elections for 2010 have ended.

On the state level, Californians have rejected Prop 23, refusing to suspend clean air regulations that would reduce California’s carbon emissions, promote cleaner cars, and focus on renewable energy. Californians, it seems, can see right through the agendas of oil companies and recognize the importance of promoting healthy environmental practices.

However, Prop 21, which would have increased vehicle license fees in the state by $18 a year in order to raise $500 million for 278 parks in California, was rejected by voters.

On the local level, Measure R was passed in Berkeley, with 64% voter approval. Measure R sought to adopt a "green vision" for Downtown Berkeley and create a set of guidelines for future decision-making in the areas of building construction and management, land use, historic preservation, urban design, sustainability, transportation, and green standards. This is great news for Streets Alive!, especially since one of the key areas addressed in the revised plan is Streets and Open Space/Pedestrian Priority. The text for Measure states that the plan will:

"Make major enhancements and additions to sidewalks, parks, plazas, mid-block pedestrian walkways, streets, and other open space, and incorporate ecologically beneficial features and to give pedestrians priority in Downtown."

The City of Berkeley has been very supportive of Streets Alive! and the 60 Boxes Project, but the reality is that there are not always resources available to carry out projected plans. However, now that the City of Berkeley knows that its citizens are also invested in this "green vision", it only provides more incentive for the city to go forth with its plans and for us at Streets Alive! to continue revitalizing the streets and sidewalks through the 60 Boxes Project!

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