Fremont / BART News

As expected, BART today approved the $120 million deal to build the Irvington BART Station.

BART also agreed on a $300 million contract with a Fairfield-based construction firm to complete the Warm Springs extension.


Fremont auto thefts declining

In response to news that Fremont’s corridor with Oakland and San Jose ranks 9th nationally in auto thefts, the police department released statistics today showing that auto thefts — and depending on how you read their headline, the nation as a whole — are on the decline.

Overall the Nation reports a continued seven year trend of decline – by following some precautions, you can help continue this trend.

A report issued earlier this week by the National Insurance Crime Bureau ranked the San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont area as the ninth highest metropolitan area in the nation for auto thefts (stolen vehicles). While the region is listed in the top ten, only the top five areas reported an actual increase in auto theft. The report states, “2010 continued the trend of declining national vehicle thefts for the seventh consecutive year.” The report focused on 366 metropolitan areas based on the number of vehicle thefts per 100,000 people. While our metropolitan area and many other parts of California ranked high, Fremont has had more than a 40% decrease in auto thefts over the last five years.

Auto thefts reported in Fremont are as follows:

2006 – 860 vehicle thefts
2007 – 775 vehicle thefts
2008 – 707 vehicle thefts
2009 – 552 vehicle thefts
2010 – 490 vehicle thefts Continue Reading


Fremont: Not the gayest of cities

We had a front page story today about census data on same sex couples. You won’t find Fremont in that story because you won’t find many gay couples in Fremont.

Only 0.7 percent of Fremont couples living together are of the same gender. Meanwhile Fremont has the second highest percentage regular old male-female led households in the county, just behind Pleasanton.

Here is a spreadsheet with even more info:
unmarried partners 2010

In other news, for the first time, Fremont will have a city-sponsored contingent in the SF Pride Parade this Sunday. Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski is bringing a 1976 Cadillac for the big day. I bet I can name three school board members who won’t be riding shotgun.


Injunction stops work indefinitely on Niles Canyon Road project

I’ll get more online soon, but a judge today issued an injunction preventing Caltrans from starting the first of three safety projects scheduled for Niles Canyon Road.

He also allowed to stand a lawsuit challenging Caltrans’ environmental review of the project.

So the project, which was supposed to commence June 15, is now indefinitely delayed until that lawsuit runs its course.

The Alameda Creek Alliance filed the lawsuit seeking to stop the project.

They won on all counts today despite the fact that their attorney quoted an environmental assessment from one Vinton Bacon to the judge. Of all the enviromental wonks around here, I was surprised that the attorney would try to persuade the judge with the findings of a politician/technology worker.


Fremont News of the Day

fremont_news_linkFrom the cops:
Occupants of a medical office at 38155 Martha Ave. arrived at work Wednesday to find office walls and windows spraypainted with racial slurs, as well as references to drugs and sex. Total damage to building estimated at $2,000.

The owner of a storage yard near Stevenson Boulevard and I-880 found a crook inside a storage container. He and an employee kept him in there until cops arrived.

A cop stopped a man at Paseo Padre Parkway and Driscoll Road and arrested him for robbing the nearby CVS.

A drunk was arrested in Cloverleaf Bowl and three 20-year-olds were arrested for burglarizing the Walmart on Osgood.

And, it’s been awhile, but the 7-11 at Decoto Road and Fremont Boulevard got hit late last night. The armed perps left with money and cigarettes.

From the wire:
Fremont company fighting AIDS in India
A food truck returns to Newark on Friday


No fair!

Little known fact about me is that I’ve been volunteering once a week in the early morning hours at a Tri-City area Middle School for much of the last three years.

School’s out, and the teacher I work with gave me a present for my troubles. It’s a gift card … to this place.


Fremont sends mixed message on redevelopment

These Fremont leaders have me totally confused.

Last night at the council meeting, everyone was breathing a sigh of relief when they learned that the legislature’s proposal to allow cities to keep redevelopment agencies actually wouldn’t cost the city all that much.

Although the City Council didn’t flat out say so, it was pretty clear that if that proposal became law, the city would most likely keep redevelopment and accept passing through more redevelopment money ($9 million the first year and $2 million in additional years) mostly to the Fremont Unified School District.

For once it seemed that, at least when compared to other city/redevelopment agencies which likely will have to pay more under some complicated formulas, Fremont actually wasn’t getting totally screwed.

But the city just released this statement from Mayor Wasserman stating that the legislature’s proposal would kill redevelopment in Fremont and prevent it from doing a host of projects, even though the city’s own calculations estimate that the legislature’s proposal would cost it less than six percent of its redevelopment funds in most years.

Truly bizzare.

Here is Wasserman’s statement:

“I am extremely disappointed that California legislators last week passed an illegal State budget that essentially steals redevelopment funds in direct violation of the passing of Proposition 22 in November by California voters. This puts at risk the majority of Fremont’s future projects, most notably the Irvington BART Station as well as Fremont Boulevard improvements and streetscape enhancements, the Grimmer Boulevard greenbelt and creek restoration, quiet zone safety improvements to railroad crossings in various locations, and pedestrian sidewalk streetscape and sidewalk improvements in the historic districts.

This budget eliminates local government’s best economic development tool at the precise moment when local governments can least afford to loose it and squanders more resources than it provides. By taking away a mechanism that creates valuable jobs and increases tax revenues-something Fremont desperately needs-the State Legislator has not listened to its constituents. Gov. Jerry Brown has the ability to do the right thing and veto AB 1X26 and AB 1X27. This action would help put California back on the road to economic recovery.”


Fremont News of the Day

From the cops:
fremont_news_linkTwo men stole two phones from the AT&T store at Mowry and Fremont.

A cop saw a car speeding past the Five Corners. He couldn’t catch up do it, but cops found the vehicle abandoned on Vogel Court. Turned out it had been stolen out of Hayward.

Seven folks robbed a man in the parking lot outside Lucky’s in the Brookvale neighborhood. The man chased after them, and officers found them in a nearby apartment complex. Four adults and three kids were arrested.

Burglar(s) entered a home on the 40100 block of Blanchard through an unlocked bathroom window and stole a camera and video game system.

From the wire:
New York Times story on California Public Employee Unions and politics.

Lot of car thefts around here


Irvington BART Station looks like a go

Last night the City Council approved a $120 million deal with BART to build the Irvington BART Station by 2015. BART is supposed to approve the same deal on Thursday.

After that it would be time to issue redevelopment bonds — the proceeds of which would go straight to BART to build the station.

Even through the future of redevelopment is uncertain, city officials are confident that this is actually going to happen. In fact it probably would have happened even if Jerry Brown had approved the Democrats’ “budget” last week. That plan allowed cities to keep their redevelopment agencies by agreeing to pass through more of those funds to local school districts, fire districts, etc.

It turns out, Fremont can afford to do that, so it probably will keep its redevelopment agency, if the legislature’s proposal ever does become law. The city calculated that it would cost them $9 million the first year and $2 million each additional year in redevelopment funds.

The city’s redevelopment agency generates about $35 million a year, so that’s less than 2 percent most years that would be going to the pimply faced youth of Fremont. Nevertheless City Manager Fred Diaz — and frankly nearly city official in the Tri-City area I’ve spoken to in the past week — decried it as a thuggish and immoral takeaway.


Fremont News of the Day

fremont_news_linkFrom the cops:

Thieves stole mail from the asa Arroyo Apartments and dumped some of it around the intersection of Isherwood and Chaplin

Cops spotted a stolen car at the Motel 6 north and later arrested a couple that were about to drive away in it. Inside the couple’s hotel room, officers found heroin.