Community Meets New Council For First Time

New Davis City Council: Mayor Dan Wolk (center) Robb Davis (far left), Lucas Frerichs.  Brett Lee on the far right with Rochelle Swanson to his left.
New Davis City Council: Mayor Dan Wolk (center) Robb Davis (far left), Lucas Frerichs. Brett Lee on the far right with Rochelle Swanson to his left.

Last night at the Odd Fellows Hall in Davis, the Davis Downtown hosted a special event honoring the new Davis City Council, which appeared before the public for the first time.

While the votes remain to be counted, the Vanguard projects that Robb Davis will become the next Mayor Pro Tem of Davis and Rochelle Swanson will be reelected.

The celebration honored the new city council consisting of current councilmembers Dan Wolk, Lucas Frerichs, Brett Lee, re-elected councilmember Rochelle Swanson, along with newly-elected councilmember Robb Davis.

At the same time, Davis Downtown honored the current city council for their hard work and dedication to our community over the past two years.  The current Davis City Council consists of Mayor Joe Krovoza, Dan Wolk, Rochelle Swanson, Lucas Frerichs, and Brett Lee.

Outgoing Mayor Joe Krovoza, who opted not to seek reelection and instead unsuccessfully sought the Assembly position, praised the downtown as the best in northern California.

Outgoing Mayor Joe Krovoza served as Mayor from January 2011 until June 2014
Outgoing Mayor Joe Krovoza served as Mayor from January 2011 until June 2014

“What Downtown Davis needs to know is that our past city council and I know certainly our future city council, are always going to listen acutely because we know that we can always get just a little bit better,” the mayor said.

He praised the improvement of the arts downtown, on-street bike parking which has gotten bikes off the sidewalk, freeing it up for pedestrians. “A cornerstone project of this city council has been to line up the grants dollars so that Third Street between A and B is going to be wide open flattened pedestrian bike corridor that’s going to become our Sather Gate between campus and the downtown,” he said.

He would add, “I know some of you don’t agree maybe, but I do think the Fifth Street, complete street project is going to mean more people going a little bit slower – though the through-put time will be reduced – but people being a little more welcomed into downtown because the whole area is going to be a lot calmer.”

“We have an exciting new council before you today,” Davis Downtown Director Stewart Savage said. “When we threw this party, a lot of people think this is about the election. But it’s about more than that. It’s about building relationships that will take us into the future. Business owners coming together and supporting our council, and also fostering an environment of success, collaboration and teamwork.”

He added, “Hopefully with this council and your support, we can do something that’s greater than ourselves and make Downtown Davis and the community of Davis a great place.”

Dan Wolk will take over as mayor in July.

“We’re very excited about this new council. We have a lot of challenges before us, I won’t get into those,” he said. “I just want to emphasize that Measure O – we really appreciate Measure O.”

He again expressed his excitement for the future.

—David M. Greenwald reporting

About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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8 Comments

  1. Alan Miller

    “Third Street between A and B is going to be wide open flattened pedestrian bike corridor that’s going to become our Sather Gate between campus and the downtown” . . . where bicycles then run into FIVE stop signs in FIVE blocks from C to G Streets thanks to recent council actions. What city in their right mind has a Sather Gate for bicycles running into a bicycle circulation stop sign sand trap? I do NOT blame Krovoza for this, he was the ONLY council member who voted against filling in the last remaining intersections downtown with four-way stops.

    This could all be solved if the City would give the finger to the State of California and initiate an Idaho Stop sign row on what shoud be the 3rd Street Bicycle Corridor from A to L Streets, rather than A to B and then G to L. Under the Idaho Stop, a smaller yield sign with a bicycle on it is placed below each stop sign, and bicycles are required to yield right of way safely.

    And don’t comment about all the bicycles that blow through stop signs. I hate bicycles that blow through stop signs as much as you do. This is about having the law reflecting reality and safety. Bicycles must still slow and look both ways and take the right of way only when it is theirs and it is safe. Bicycles still must slow or stop to yield right of way.

    The same idiots will still blow the stop signs and should still be cited for it. There are plenty more of them than there are officers to enforce.

    When Fifth Street opens, I predict that a huge percentage of bicycles currently slogging through downtown stop signs — because Fifth Street currently offers bicycles a high chance of death — will shift to Fifth Street.

  2. Tia Will

    Alan

    Two slightly different perspectives on two of your points.

    “he same idiots will still blow the stop signs and should still be cited for it. There are plenty more of them than there are officers to enforce.

    For me it isn’t the matter of being a scoff law and either getting ticketed or getting away with it. It’s about the time when a motorist following the law to a T ends up killing or maiming a bicyclist not following the law. As a society we tend to focus on the killed or injured individual, say they were to blame, and basically blow it off while forgetting about the life changing impacts to the surviving individuals and their family members. For me, it is about engendering a preventative model and the creation of a culture of safety.

    “I predict that a huge percentage of bicycles currently slogging through downtown stop signs — because Fifth Street currently offers bicycles a high chance of death — will shift to Fifth Street.”

    I am not sure if you are seeing this as a positive or negative. For me, it seems desirable to create a primarily
    bicycle transit route for those wishing to get to their destination rapidly, distinct from a more leisurely ride through the heart of the business district for those not in a hurry and who may want to stop and look around or hop off and make a small purchase.

    1. Alan Miller

      “engendering a preventative model and the creation of a culture of safety.” I believe there is a point at which — if I am understanding your model and culture — people become so frustrated with restrictions that they ignore the laws more rather than following them, creating a greater rift in behavior between passive follow-all-laws types and agressive bicyclists, creating more unpredictable behavior and more danger. In my model, bicycles are not so restricted and thus more persons follow the laws and consider right-of-way instead of stop or blow through. Then the true scoff laws can be more easily cited within existing resources, which are scarce.

      As for Fifth Street, a true positiive, as is removing through bicycles hopefully en-mass from the overburdened multi-mode downtown intersections. Fifth Street A-L should be a spine for bicycles across town, as it is from L East and from A West.

  3. Davis Progressive

    fifth street is really where bicyclists who are traveling through should go. it’s only because the road is a death trap that they are not.

  4. odd man out

    Alan Miller suggested: “This could all be solved if the City would give the finger to the State of California and initiate an Idaho Stop sign row on what shoud be the 3rd Street Bicycle Corridor from A to L Streets, rather than A to B and then G to L.”

    The city has no authority to do that: CVC 21. (a) Except as otherwise expressly provided, the provisions of
    this code are applicable and uniform throughout the state and in all
    counties and municipalities therein, and a local authority shall not
    enact or enforce any ordinance or resolution on the matters covered
    by this code, including ordinances or resolutions that establish
    regulations or procedures for, or assess a fine, penalty, assessment,
    or fee for a violation of, matters covered by this code, unless
    expressly authorized by this code.

    While I welcome the impending re-configuration of 5th St., I’ve been riding it several times a week for 30+ years with no real issues. Suggesting that it’s a death trap for cyclists when there is no history of cyclist fatalities there is really engaging in hyperbole.

    1. Alan Miller

      As for paragraph 2: yes, and the state of California has no authority to allow the selling of so-called medical marijuana, but California gave the finger to the US Government. Similarly, I am suggesting Davis give the finger to the state of California regarding the Idaho stop concept. It has to start somewhere/somehow.

      As for paragraph 3: I amend my statement to be unhyperbolic: 5th Street is an injury trap for bicyclists.

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