Restaurant news

The former Black Angus on Walnut is going to be something called Top Buffet, which apparently will have some sort of Asian food.

The Essanay Cafe in Niles isn’t going out of business. The local owners have managed to sell the business to a new operator, so hopefully it’ll stay open and continue to host the very good open mic.


Cricket fields for Fremont

Fremont has identified a 40-acre parcel near Pacific Commons as the site of a long-awaited cricket field.

Back when the A’s were coming to town, the city envision the land as a train station and parking lot for people heading to the games.

But now that the former stadium site is going to be The Block, the city is moving forward with plans to use most or possibly all of the 40-acre site at the southwesterly terminus of Auto Mall Parkway to “address a long standing need to provide cricket fields and additional soccer fields for Fremont residents,” according to a city report.

The report also noted the park could include tennis courts, basketball courts, skating facilities, a football field and an bicycle racing and training area. The city also hasn’t given up on a train station.

The city’s Recreation Commission will consider on Wednesday the city’s plan to purchase the parcel from its redevelopment agency for $4.3 million.


The Block

Catellus and the Pacific Commons folks deserve credit for hosting the best ground-breaking ever. Lots of food and almost no self-congratulatory yammering.

Here’s a video of Fremont’s future new Century Theaters movie theater and adjoining development. The theater should open next spring.


Fremont still wants union concessions

The previous two blog posts came out of the city’s budget press briefing earlier today.

Long story, short, the city has an $8 million shortfall. It wants about $5.2 million in savings either from its employees or some sort of efficiency measures.

The rest would come from the budget reserve, so no projected service or staffing cuts.

Last year’s one-week furlough saved $1.8 million, so they’re looking for nearly 3 x’s that in 2011-12. City officials have made it clear they want future employees to receive lower pension benefits. They weren’t saying what other types of concessions they’re expecting to see.

I’m seeing some purple SEIU shirts here at City Hall.


Fremont to proceed with Irvington BART project

The city has moved far enough along with BART that they think the Irvington BART project is bullet-proof when it comes to the potential demise of Redevelopment.

The Council is expected to approve agrements with BART at its June 7th meeting and move forward with issuing redevelopment bonds to fund the project.


More Caltrans Work along Niles Canyon Road


Last time Caltrans crews visited Niles Canyon Road they removed more than 70 trees and were greeted by a few hearty protesters. Not sure if the protesters will be back, but Caltrans crews will start work at 9 p.m. Thursday getting the area prepared for some shoulder widening later this year.

The Work crews will take off the weekend and return from Tuesday through Friday nights. There will just be one lane of traffic open to drivers around the Rosenwarnes Underpass during this work.

Also, the Alameda Creek folks are threatening to sue Caltrans to stop this project, which is the first of three the state transportation agency has scheduled for Niles Canyon. Caltrans just reopened public comments on the second and most substantial project, according to the creek people.



From the Archive: No More Indian Mascots

Another thing about Warm Springs Elementary School is that they used to be “The Warriors” and their mascot was a friendly looking gender-bending Indian. Now they’re the Wolves. Mission San Jose is still the Warriors, but I guess they got rid of  their old mascot.

Here’s why from the Mercury News or March 22, 1995:

For nearly three decades, Mission San Jose High School students have proudly dubbed themselves the Warriors. There are two large carvings of American Indians in the administration building, large color murals of Geronimo and a Plains Indian chief in the gymnasium, and the school newspaper bears the name “The Smoke Signal.”

 If a group of Indian parents has its way, however, all such symbols would be banned by the end of the school year.

 The 12 members of the Native American Parent Committee, who advise the district on its American Indian program, want school board members to adopt a districtwide policy outlawing Indian mascots. The board will take up the matter tonight. Continue Reading


From the Archive: Vandals Strike Warm Springs Elementary School

I’ve got a story in today’s paper about a time capsule from 1986 that was opened at Warm Springs Elementary School on Monday.

To my surprise, and to the surprise of most of the returning students, vandals had trashed the school in 1994 and stolen about half the items from the box, which had been stored in the school’s trophy case. The vandals really did a number on the school. Here is the Mercury News story about it from Nov. 12, 1994.

Youthful vandals trashed a Fremont elementary school on Friday, smearing condiments throughout much of the building, breaking windows and invaluable mementos — and apparently photographing the widespread destruction. 

Police suspect two boys between the ages of 12 and 14 took advantage of the school holiday to wreck and burglarize Warm Springs Elementary but did not know how much replacement and repair costs would run. Whatever the price, Principal Ethel Murphy said it was far too high.


“It’s devastating to everybody to have this happen, especially to think that there are individuals out there who would do this to a school, ” she said, sifting through damage done to her office. “Whoever did it, they had a vicious heart, I’ll tell you that much. Because they took everything they could to destroy and they enjoyed it.” Continue Reading