Fremont News of the Day and Goodbye

From the cops:

A house on the 38800 block of Bluegill Drive was burglarized. Folks did notice a Budget rental truck in the area. Meanwhile on the 300 block of Fieldstone, burglars failed to seal the deal, and neighbors reported seeing a moving truck near the home.

From me:

This is my last day as the Fremont reporter. I’ve been reassigned to cover Oakland City Hall. Wish me luck. I’ll need it.

There will be a reporter taking my place. I don’t know who it’ll be, and I don’t know if the reporter will take over the blog.

Covering Fremont these past four years has been a treat. There’s a real cooperative spirit here, and a lot of very mature, well-intentioned people. That’s not the case everywhere. No wonder Applebee’s decided to open a second restaurant in town.

Thank you for reading the blog and for commenting. Reporters feed off the passion of the community. Your comments, although often caustic, were a constant reminder of how much you care about the city and how important it was for me to do a good job. Thanks again.




Brief update on NUMMI land

I was one of only a few people that showed up to the city’s final community meeting on its grand ambitions for 800 acres in and around the former NUMMI plant. You didn’t really miss anything other than free snickerdoodles  and ginger snaps.

Union Pacific is moving ahead with selling most of the land it purchased from NUMMI last year. It’ll probably keep about 15 acres near the future BART station for a relatively small rail yard. The vision being laid out is mostly offices, technology campuses and industrial sites. Housing would mostly be confined to land sandwiched between the future BART station and I-680 across from the Weibel neighborhood.

No council members showed up to the meeting. They’ll get the presentation in February.


No Berkeley Bowl for Fremont

Fremont developer Ray Tong made his first appearance to the City Council chambers Tuesday (in support of Sheena Chang) since guaranteeing three years ago that he would open a Berkeley Bowl supermarket in Fremont if the City Council granted him rights to build it at Auto Mall Parkway and Technology Court.

The council gave Tong what he wanted, but Tong isn’t going to build a Berkeley Bowl. The property owner that Tong represented sold the site to the feds. It’s going to be a VA outpatient clinic.


Fremont News of the Day

From the cops:

A parolee grabbed a money bag with $4,000 inside from a Saint Vincent De Paul  employee and took off westbound on Decoto Road. Officers and Dax the dog raced to the scene, tracked down the crook and recovered the cash.

A 20-something man on a BMX bike decided to rob a passerby Monday near the corner of Blacow Road and Stevenson Boulevard. He got $7 for his trouble.

Two 50-something year old siblings got into a dispute on Monday. The sister told the brother to take out the trash. The brother told the sister that she should take out the trash. The sister got a knife and chased after the brother. The brother called the cops, who are investigating.

From the wire:
Fremont sperm donor draws attention from feds.


Chan opts out of Kimber Park battle

This is tucked away in the council report, but I thought it was unusual enough to merit its own post. The council had the unenviable task last night of taking sides in Fremont’s fiercest turf war. Being the smart cookies that they are, however, they staked out some middle ground and left themselves lots of options going forward.

But noticeably absent in last night’s 3-1 vote was Councilmember Sue Chan. She doesn’t live in Kimber Park. She does have a relationship with the land owner, Sheena Chang, but that’s not why she said that she recused herself. Heck, she has close relations with Centerville district landowners David Beretta and Jack Rodgers, but that didn’t stop her from participating when they had business before the council.

Chan said she decided to stay out of the Kimber Park battle because her husband’s dentistry has lots of clients in Kimber Park and gets lots of referrals from Kimber Park. That would seem a carte blanche to back out of future politically bruising neighborhood battles that comes before the council.




Bacon is running again for City Council next year

It’s hard to imagine a Fremont council election without Sierra Club member Vinnie Bacon and his dog. Bacon told me last night — and he’s been telling friends and associates this for months — that he will again seek to prove that a green progressive with deep pockets, but no ties to the Democratic Party can win office in Fremont.

With Dominic Dutra not running for re-election, there will be an open council seat and probably quite a few Planning Commission types in the mix.


Live Council Blog — Kimber Park

Fremont sprawls across 92 square miles, but apparently only 13 acres really matter.

The council is set to approve the general plan, which will guide development for the next 30 years. It would be another ho-hum affair if not for the battle in Kimber Park. Residents are fighting to keep the 13-acres of open space in  the middle of their neighborhood closed to development.

The property owner, Sheena Chang, and her development partners want to build 28 houses on the site and scale back the established fitness club.

Kimber Park residents have made a habit of showing up to these meetings in the dozens to the hundreds making their case for preserving the open space.

But Chang, who’s a well-connected landowner with holdings at Pacific Commons, is putting up a good fight. She marshaled dozens of supporters in red shirts, who made their way  into the council chambers before 5 p.m. So right now it’s a sea of pro-Chang red here in the capacity-filled Chambers with lots of green-glad, very angry Kimber Park residents watching the proceedings on television in the lobby. If we could get them together it would be starting to look a lot like Christmas. Continue Reading


Fremont News of the Day

From the cops:

For the second time in two weeks two armed men robbed two liquor stores back-to-back. This time around it was “OO” Liquors and again at Lake Arrowhead.
Walmart security called the cops after someone bought a phone with suspicious looking credit card. Officers stopped the crook in his car and made the arrest.
From the wire:
Fremont Foodiewants everyone to know that Temple Beth Torah is having its big latke shindig this Sunday. But I want everyone to know that Hanukkah isn’t for another three weeks. The synagogue is jumping the gun. They probably think it’s already 5773.

I love this headline. No one’s ever accused Niles folks of being modest.

Looks like the Chamber will be accepting toys and white sheets this year.


Gus Morrison is biggest name in big field for Ohlone College appointment

Either the Ohlone College board is more prestigious that I realized or word is getting out about the free health care for trustees.

Fourteen people are vying to serve out the remaining year of Nick Nardolillo’s term.

They are as follows:
Steve Allen — Not a comedian
Nader Ayad — Jeweler
Ramona Bascom — nun
Robert Brunton — not a nun. Former trustee.
Ann Crosbie — active parent former candidate for school board
Robert Douglas — Retired Cargill Salt exec, head of the Ohlone Foundation
Donald Jedlovec — Photographer
Daniel Kennerk — workforce, union guy
Naeem Malik — Chamber member
Gus Morrison — Former mayor, councilmember
Stanley (Gene) Page — Another business guy
David Sheen — Lawyer former candidate for Ohlone Trustee
John Werner — Recently retired Fremont teacher
Jeevan Zutshi –real estate gent who says he’s bowing out to make way for Morrison.