Commentary: Evolutionary Change Coming to Davis

housing

In the early 1970s a revolution hit Davis, which transformed it from a conservative, agricultural town, to a progressive stronghold. Davis politics were transformed by the election of Bob Black, Dick Holdstock and Joan Poulos to the Davis City Council, backed by students and representing progressive change.

Davis would change over the years, and by the time I moved to Davis twenty years ago – and throughout much of the ten years of the Vanguard – Davis’ political landscape would become polarized between two camps: one supporting growth at least to some degree and the other opposing peripheral growth and limiting other forms of growth as well.

Right now I would argue that we are at an interesting crossroads.  Looking at the four council candidates, it appears all of them back some measure of growth – all are supporters of Measure A.  As we noted last week, the opposition to growth is strong enough to block Nishi potentially, but they are not strong enough to field a candidate in support of their position or get a majority elected to council opposing new growth.

One thing that we see on the city council is a shift in the demographics of who is on the council.  In 2006, the council was composed of three retirees or people not working full time – Don Saylor, Ruth Asmundson and Sue Greenwald.  Stephen Souza owned his own business, and Lamar Heystek, in his 20s, was just starting his career.

In the elections since 2010, we have seen people elected who are working full-time, and are quite a bit younger – Joe Krovoza, Brett Lee and Rochelle Swanson were elected in their 40s, with Dan Wolk, Lucas Frerichs and soon-to-be Will Arnold in their 30s.

These are people in my peer group age-wise, not the older generation, for the most part.  Of that group, four of them have school age kids – Joe Krovoza’s kids were either graduated or about to graduate.

There are still progressives in this community, but people my age who live in Davis have had to make sacrifices to live here.  We either rent houses or we own far smaller homes than we would have if we moved to Woodland or Dixon.  Schools are important, in fact, they are a key reason many of us continue to live here.

From my perspective, I love living in Davis because it is a small, vibrant, well-educated college town.  It has great amenities.  But I see all of those things as being in peril if we are not willing to accept small incremental changes to the community.

First, I remain strongly opposed to peripheral subdivision and retail.  I was opposed to Cannery because the type of housing we are building there is unaffordable to young families.  I’m not going to support large new subdivisions on the periphery of town.  I don’t want to see the outskirts of Davis filled with big box retail and other strip mall chain stores.  I don’t want Davis to look like Everytown, USA.

However, I will support an innovation center at Mace or in the NW Quadrant.  Why?  Because we in fiscal trouble.  $655 million is not only a big number, I think it’s a very real number.  If you want to see us have roads in disrepair, parks having to close, swimming pools that are empty, greenbelts that are brown, then continue the way we are going.  My children play in those parks, use those pools, go to Davis Diamonds, etc.

Having a series of huge tax increases is not the answer.  It makes our community less affordable.  It puts pressure on the schools which rely on local taxes.  It puts pressure on the middle class and the working class.

Davis is no longer the same community it was only two decades ago.  Look at our school age demographics – 46% minority ethnic and racial populations and 25% Title One.  Our students are diverse and they are increasingly from working class backgrounds.

A progressive community is not one that is exclusively upper-middle class, with advanced college degrees, and racially and ethnically homogenous.  We need to find a way to preserve the great aspects of our community while allowing us to provide young families with the housing they need to live here, and to take advantage of our great schools and great city amenities.

Finding innovative and environmentally sustainable ways to add housing without building over the great assets we have of world class farmland will be a key challenge for the next generation of progressive leadership in this community.

Key also will be finding a way to provide housing for the 9000 additional students, faculty, and staff UC Davis plans to add in the next ten years.  I agree with those who ask UC Davis take on a fair share of the housing needs – but I disagree with those who believe that providing housing to those students, faculty and staff is not our problem.

As one example: Nishi, Sterling, and Lincoln40 could provide for 3000 beds.  That’s one-third of the existing additional need.  I understand that there are concerns about all three sites, but that suggests one possible path forward.  If not Nishi, then we need to think about where we can build housing to accommodate 1500 beds elsewhere in the city.

A while ago I suggested that if we do not solve the student housing problem, we are going to be faced with more crises.  Students will increasingly pack into mini-dorms, putting them at odds with families and existing residences.

Those who believe that students would never rise up and assert their numbers should read Chapter 2 of Mike Fitch’s book, “Growing Pains: Thirty Years in the History of Davis,” where he showed the role of students in the changing of the guard in 1972.  I believe that time is coming here too.

I believe that in order to preserve Davis as a great community, we have to be willing to solve some of these problems through the development of peripheral innovation park sites that can raise revenue while tapping into existing university’s  high tech and ag tech strengths.  And I believe we need to figure out a way to take on some of those student and rental housing needs in order to free up housing for single families with children.

I believe if this is done the right way, we can preserve the great things about our community while avoiding the pitfalls of the worst things of our community.  However, what concerns me is that many people who are arguing that we don’t need more housing or more jobs, are people who own homes and either have a job or are now retired.

The next generation taking seats on the council come from a very different perspective, one that I share – we worry about jobs and we worry about where we are going to live and how we can afford it.

The question that I keep pondering more and more is what will Davis look like in 12 years when my daughter graduates from high school and will we even still be able to live here at this time?  That’s a very different time horizon than many others have.

—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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57 Comments

  1. Tia Will

    David

     people my age who live in Davis have had to make sacrifices to live here.  We either rent houses or we own far smaller homes than we would have if we moved to Woodland or Davis.”

    The next generation who is taking seats on council come from a very different perspective – one that I share – we worry about jobs and we worry about where we are going to live and how we can afford it.”

    While I appreciate the truth of your statements and your sincerity, I think that at least some of you in your 20’s and 30′ are missing a vital point. Every group of citizens that is older than you has experienced the  same challenges. For those of us who actually had to leave Davis earlier in our careers because we could not afford it, worked very hard, and then returned when we were able to, it can sound a little preachy to hear from the younger group that “we have had to make sacrifices” spoken as though no one else can understand this perspective.  Also, I would call the word “sacrifice” to attention. Is it truly “sacrifice” to not live in a large house ?  Or is it merely making reasoned choices based on your own priorities ? I saw it as the latter.

    Also, some of us are not looking at Davis from a larger is necessarily better point of view. When I look at the future of Davis with my children and potentially their children in mind, I would prefer to maintain a smaller,  non major manufacturing community in which for them to live if they choose. There are many, many of these communities in existence if they ultimately choose that for themselves. There are very few communities with the small city atmosphere of Davis. This will not longer be a choice for them if we decide that we are going to pay off our own costs with the price being the destruction of this as a potential way of life for them.

     

    1. David Greenwald

      Fortunately I’m not in my 20s or 30s – :wink

      The point is not that either side is wrong, it is that there are different perspectives and needs based on age and life cycle status.

      1. Tia Will

        David

        it is that there are different perspectives and needs based on age and life cycle status.”

        I feel that this is emphasized far too much. I know people of all different ages who see this issues differently. I have been a slow growther since I was old enough to understand what that meant. I would not see Jim Gray as either a youngster nor a slow growth.  My son is in his early twenties and is a slow growther and was even before he ever knew that he would have the ability to live in his childhood home.

        As for your statement that this is not about right and wrong, I think that this unfortunately is not the opinion of many people who post here who have repeatedly upbraided me for my lack of morals, casting me as a greedy no growth despite my avowed support of some projects.

    2. South of Davis

      Tia wrote:

      > For those of us who actually had to leave Davis

      > earlier in our careers because we could not afford it, 

      Thirty years ago you could rent an apartment in Davis for $3oo a month and buy a home for $75K.  Other than people moving to live for free with family no one “had” to leave Davis “because they could not afford it” because rents and home prices were similar in other cities in the region (unlike today when Davis rents and home prices are MUCH higher).

      Then Barb wrote:

      > Am wondering how many of the minority referred to above

      > are related to students and faculty at the university.

      A large number of poor “title one” kids in Davis schools are the children of brilliant grad students making near poverty wages (many live in the rent subsidized Solano Park Apartments on campus).

        1. South of Davis

          David wrote:

          > A lot more live in New Harmony and in the area around Valley Oak.

          We all know that Davis has “regular” poor kids who live in apartments built poor people like New Harmony on Cowell and Rosa Parks and Sojourner Truth around the corner from Valley Oak.  I find that people are surprised to find out that Davis also has a lot of poor kids with parents who have degrees from Ivy League schools who are “poor” while in grad school.

      1. sisterhood

        Dear S.O.D.,

        This subject has probably been covered enough but here’s my one and one half cents worth:

        During the time period you described, I did work full time (Natomas area), but lived in Davis, and attempted to buy a very small home, in Davis. I did not have enough money saved up for a down payment.

      2. Tia Will

        SOD

        Thirty years ago you could rent an apartment in Davis for $3oo a month and buy a home for $75K”
        Thirty yeas ago, I did not have that much money and so was doubled up in my apartment. I do not see that as any different than kids doubling up today. Only the dollar amounts have changed not the ability to pay or not pay.

    3. Mark West

      “Is it truly “sacrifice”…”

      What is a sacrifice to one, may be of no importance to another, but that lack of agreement does not change the validity of the first person’s view. The important question is not the validity of the sacrifice, but on how much value the community should place on those individual feelings when making decisions about the community’s needs.

       “I would prefer…”

      We all have things that we might ‘prefer,’ but the focus of our discourse should be on finding solutions to address the needs of our community, not fulfilling the wishes of one individual or another. Individual preference will come into play when we are asked to vote, and when we decide individually how we will spend our time and efforts, but those individual wants and fears only act as distractions and impediments when it comes to looking for community-wide solutions. If we truly want to find solutions for the City’s unfunded obligations, the absurdly low vacancy rate, the decay of our infrastructure, the changing demographic, and the diminishing quality of life in town, then we need to set aside our individual wants and preferences and think about the needs of the community as a whole.

      It is not about what you or I want, but what the community needs.  Improved economic vitality, quality jobs, appropriate housing, and greater tax revenues to fund our growing list of unfunded obligations.  The solutions are there, but only as long as we are willing to look beyond the end of our own noses.

      1. Frankly

        This is the main point.

        It brings up the question can we and should we negotiate with the unreasonable?

        I think back to all the years and posting on this topic, and yet those that were no-growers are still opposed to every project.  Or if they are supportive, it is with a tenuous thread ready to snap if the wind blows 1 degree farther right.

        So should we work together, or just accept that we are at odds and go about working to get a majority convinced?

        I can respect people that have a different opinion, but why should I lie and say I respect their opinion when it is clearly one that is selfish and unreasonable in light of all considerations?

        It gets back to that “lead, follow or get the hell out of the way” principle.

        If, for example, any no-grower in opposition to Nishi would be aggressively and actively  working on alternatives for solving the problems that Nishi would serve to improve, I would be not only more respectful… but actually complementary of them and would support them.

        But we don’t have that.  We only have “get in the way” aggression and action.

        And that is not a respectable position in my opinion.

        1. Alan Pryor

          If, for example, any no-grower in opposition to Nishi would be aggressively and actively  working on alternatives for solving the problems that Nishi would serve to improve, I would be not only more respectful… but actually complementary of them and would support them. But we don’t have that.

           

          Sir – I do not think you know what you are talking about. Many of the people opposed to Nishi and MRIC are very actively involved in many different Commissions and civic activities having to do with natural resources, land use planning and open space, and transportation issues. Perhaps you don’t see them because your civic-minded time is otherwise spent trolling on the Vanguard. Get out and join a City Commissions or Advisory Committee and see what these folks are actually doing to better their community.

        2. Frankly

          no-grower in opposition to Nishi would be aggressively and actively working on alternatives for solving the problems that Nishi would serve to improve,

          Sir – I repeat with emphasis.

          Problem #1 – Not enough good jobs in the community.

          Problem #2 – Not enough space for UCD tech transfer business.

          Problem #3 – Too small supply of housing in the community given the demand.

          Problem #4 – Not enough tax revenue flowing to the city.

          So, what are any of the no-growers doing working on alternative solutions to these problems?   Or, are they working on things that just exacerbate these problems?

           

  2. Barb

    Davis is no longer the same community it was only two decades ago.  Look at our school age demographics – 46% minority ethnic and racial populations and 25% Title One.  Our students are diverse and they are increasingly from working class backgrounds.

    I see a disconnect from the point of the article (need for more revenue and housing) and the above. Am wondering how many of the minority referred to above are related to students and faculty at the university. And the reported increase in those of working class background doesn’t follow from the increasing cost of housing in Davis. Can you elaborate?

  3. Nancy Price

    It’s very easy and self-serving to label those who oppose Nishi totally or in its current plan as nimbys, no-growthers , etc.   There are legitimate questions and issues being raised by those who oppose Nishi now that have been raised over the past years and even more intensely since July 2014 when the innovation parks  were proposed along with the guiding principles – that  are only voluntary.

    Let’s be clear, the current debate is much more than just growth vs. no-growth,  but it is convenient to report it that way for the sake of lining up sides in the good old American  way for a good fight.

    This kind of debate/conversation is happening all over the country – it’s not unique to Davis and communities/cities  – city governments, developers and citizens/residents – are responding in different ways.

    1. Adam Smith

      But the most vocal opponents of Nishi are the same ones who are most vocal opponents about other new projects.   And the reasons are always very similar or the same.  So, in the end, those people andtheir arguments  get categorized as “no-growthers”.   Once they support a new  project or two, their arguments will carry more weight in my book.

      1. Matt Williams

        Adam, here is a question for you.  Do you think Nancy’s objections are more strongly rooted in opposing specific projects, or more strongly rooted in calling out what she sees as abuse of process?

    2. David Greenwald

      Nancy: Not sure if you’re referring to my text.  It was trying to focus on the bigger picture.

      The only portion that referred to Nishi was this: “As one example: Nishi, Sterling, and Lincoln40 could provide for 3000 beds.  That’s one-third of the existing additional need.  I understand that there are concerns about all three sites, but that suggests one possible path forward.  If not Nishi, then we need to think about where we can build housing to accommodate 1500 beds elsewhere in the city.”

      In other words, if you believe there are “legitimate questions and issues being raised by those who oppose Nishi now” – then that’s fine, but we still need to figure out an answer here.  If not Nishi, then what?  I don’t see a lot of discussion by those opposed to Nishi on the then what other than pressure the university, which I don’t believe we’re going to be able to do without coming to the table with someone of our own to throw into the mix.

    3. ryankelly

      I don’t understand why these older people who benefited from the expansion and development in Davis are so vehemently opposed to any development no matter where or in what form, forcing people to live in crowded, substandard and expensive housing and driving jobs out of town to protect their idealist view of Davis.  Some are financially benefiting from the status quo.  I feel that nimbys and no-growthers are generous terms to describe these people who seem to oppose every development, no matter how long the planning process.  It is not just a convenient label – it is fairly accurate.  Why would they actively support massive development on the UCD campus, but not on a piece of property across the street from it?  It is not about traffic or air quality, it is about no-growth for the City.

      1. The Pugilist

        I don’t get the UC Davis thing either.  It’s one thing if they are doing infill – densifying Solano Park, Orchard Park, maybe even the field on Russell, although that seems problematic, but if they are building on farmland, what’s the difference from putting housing there or north of Covell?

        1. Matt Williams

          Agreed Pugilist.  I have asked the following several times, but never received an answer from anyone, Which fits the definition of sprawl better, West Village or Nishi? 

      2. Matt Williams

        Ryan, same question to you as I asked Adam above.   Do you think Nancy’s objections are more strongly rooted in opposing specific projects, or more strongly rooted in calling out what she sees as abuse of process?

        1. ryankelly

          Well, that’s an interesting question.  She is suing the City over what she thinks was not correctly done.  But she has campaigned in opposition to every development project vote since I can remember.  It is not clear – and I believe that it is likely that she would not –  that she would support the project if only the project planning steps were done to her satisfaction.  It seems to me that the lawsuit is just part of the overall strategy to stop the project.

        2. Matt Williams

          It is an interesting question.  At the heart of that question is a chicken/egg dilemma about when was the last time we had an uncontroversial process.  Cannery?  Not a chance.  The Hotel/Conference Center?  Definitely not.  Trackside?  Sterling?  Willowbank Park?  Wildhorse Ranch?  Paso Fino?

          When was the last time that we completed a development application that had a proactive, inclusive, transparent process?

           

      3. Frankly

        ryankelly – the same points I have made over and over only to be attacked as not being sensitive to others’ opinions.

        But it is easy to see the fly in their ointment.

        They oppose peripheral development and say that we should stick with infill, and then they come out against Trackside and Sterling.

        They say that they care about the environment and the burden of high costs of the low-income residents, yet they come out opposed to Nishi any significant new housing and all the good jobs it would bring… and applaud having more students and faculty live outside of Davis and drive back and forth, and more Davis residents unable to get a good job in town, and having to commute back and forth to other communities for their work.

        They claim that the City of Davis should not allow any significant housing to be built because the demand from UCD growth and so UCD should build the housing. And you and I both know that it would still be peripheral development or infill development and these people would come out against that too.

        I started to use the term “puckered up old people” because it is an apt description.  They are mostly over 50.  They don’t like change.  They don’t want the city to change.  They are firmly planted in grumpy scowling resolve.  They will oppose every significant development, and some of them will even oppose the insignificant development… especially if it is close to where they live.

        When they use alternatives in their arguments in opposition to some development, they are just hedging… knowing full well they will also oppose the alternative if and when it is proposed.

        I see these people as beneficial flavoring to our Davis DNA; but they are unhealthy as the main course.  And then have been the main course for a long time.

        They have won in the past.  Will they win again?

        If Measure A fails they will win and everyone else in the community will lose.  If Measure A passes, I think many of them will have to face a reality of a Davis that is changing and they are either going to have to learn how to accept it, or else move somewhere else.

        The catalyst for change that these people-that-oppose-everything oppose is not developer or pro-growther driven… it is due to two dynamic uncontrollable forces, and one self-induced shooting in the foot.

        1. 66% and climbing… the number of high school grads going to college.  This compares to about 15% in 1980.  The state is not building enough new campuses to accommodate all these new students so the people living in college towns all must accept the growth of the existing campuses.

        2. Regional economic expansion… the Bay Area is one of the strongest economic regions in the world.  The growth has been moving east for decades.  The Sacramento region has been aggressively growing and is expected to be one of the fastest growing regions in the nation for the coming years.  Davis cannot escape the impacts from all that growth even if there are enough puckered up old people to resist city growth.

        3. How many of the people strongly no-growth… or even extreme slow-growth… have voted for left-leaning politicians?    The history of left-leaning politicians in this state is one where they were put in power from the money and free labor of the public employee unions and associations.  And these politicians have rewarded the union and association members with what is now absurd and unsustainable pay and benefits.  And it has caused the state and most cities and counties in the state to be awash in red ink over a mounting increase in unfunded liabilities for government employee retirement benefits.   So these puckered-up old no-gowthers have shot themselves in the foot due to us needing to grow our local economy to pay for all this left-leaning political rewarding that has gone on.

        The bottom line here is that medicine needs to be taken and there are those stubbornly refusing it.  Hopefully there are enough of us that can force these enemies of change to take their medicine so we can all get to healing.

      4. South of Davis

        Ryan wrote:

        > Why would they actively support massive development on the

        > UCD campus, but not on a piece of property across the street from it?

        Most (but not all) aging baby boomers in Davis have the majority of their net worth in their home.  Development on the UCD campus (like the West Village) is restricted to students and people connected to UCD so most people moving to Davis will still be forced to either pay current homeowners top dollar when they sell or pay them high rents if they decide to keep the home and let one of their No on A management firms manage the home when they move in to Atria Senior Living or the new Carlton on 5th.  The development of Covell Village or Wildhorse Ranch would add nice new homes that anyone can buy lowering the value of older Davis homes owned by the aging boomers.

    4. South of Davis

      Nancy wrote:

      > It’s very easy and self-serving to label those who oppose

      > Nishi totally or in its current plan as nimbys, no-growthers…

      Can anyone name even a single person who has publicly opposed Nishi who has also publically gone on record as supporting the growth of Davis and/or high density infill apartment development in their neighborhood near their “back yard”?

        1. Frankly

          Matt – I meant that her support seems very tenuous.  She was about to bolt just because she was unhappy with things that CC member Swanson said.

  4. hpierce

    It’s very easy and self-serving to label those who support Nishi totally or for most of the current plan as pro-developer, pro-growthers, ‘minions’,etc.   There are legitimate questions and issues being raised by those who support Nishi now that have been raised over the past years. 

    I’ll probably still vote “No”, with full access to W Olive, AND with no guarantee of the Nishi/UCD grade separated crossing of UPRR being completed in a timely manner.

  5. Ron

    SACOG requires all cities to accommodate their “fair share” of growth/development (or risk losing public funds).  I understand that Davis is currently meeting those requirements, as a result of the Cannery, etc.  (Despite anyone’s preferences, a “no-growth” result is not actually attainable.)

    The developments mentioned in this article go “above and beyond” SACOG requirements.  I understand that the rules to receive “credit” for building housing in advance of requirements are not straight-forward.

    If Davis does not receive credit from SACOG for building housing in advance of requirements, where will the next housing developments go (to meet SACOG requirements), if we build (or increase density) on most available sites now?

    1. David Greenwald

      SACOG has a lot of bark and little teeth.  My question would be – how do you intend to meet the needs of 9000 additional students, faculty and staff without at least taking on some of that in the city in the form of apartments?

      1. Ron

        David:  “SACOG has a lot of bark and little teeth.”

        Really?  You’re implying that we should ignore those requirements?  (Almost sounds like an extreme “no-growther” argument.)

        You’re asking me a question, without answering my question.  (Where will new developments go in the future, if Davis does not receive SACOG credit by building in advance of requirements?)

        .

    2. Odin

      SACOG was also developed to reduce traffic congestion along with addressing climate change.  I can’t see how a developments such as Nishi and Sterling, that subjects it’s occupants to excessive pollution, while causing additional traffic backup along Richards addresses this. (no matter what they do to Richards/Olive, it won’t relieve grid-lock there.)  People need to remember the original intent of SACOG.

    3. Matt Williams

      Ron, here is some historical information that may illuminate some of SACOG’s processes regarding RHNA.

      SACOG’s most recent planning period covers the 8-year period from 2013 through 2021.

      SACOG’s previous planning period covered the 5-year period from 2008 through 2013, and the 2007-2008 Housing Element Steering Committee process was in response to that planning period and  SACOG’s Board of Directors adopted the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) for that period on February 21, 2008. 

      The timelines for the RHNA process changed after the State of California passed Senate Bill 375 in 2008. One key goal of SB 375 was to better coordinate transportation planning with land use and housing planning.

      The RHNA for Davis for the 8-year period from 2013-2021 was 1,066 units, including 422 units affordable to low- and very-low income households. The City is not required to ensure that the units will be built, but must demonstrate that land is appropriately zoned. Units built in 2011 and 2012 counted toward satisfying the 2013-2021 RHNA requirement.

      The RHNA for Davis for the 5-year period from 2008-2013 was 498 units, including 150 units affordable to low- and very-low income households. Units built in 2006 and 2007 counted toward satisfying the 2008-2013 RHNA requirement.

      So my opinion is that the next RHNA cycle will be for the 8-year period from 2021 through 2028, and if the State doesn’t change the rules, any housing units built in 2019 and 2020 will count against the 2021-2028 RHNA allocation.  Given the commitment by the Nishi developer to restrict occupancy based on construction milestones on both the UPRR Underpass and the I-80 Interchange, it is highly unlikely that any units at Nishi will happen until 2019, so they all will count against the 2021-2028 RHNA allocation.

  6. Misanthrop

    “First, I remain strongly opposed to peripheral subdivision and retail.  I was opposed to Cannery because the type of housing we are building there is unaffordable to young families.  I’m not going to support large new subdivisions on the periphery of town. ”

    So I guess you aren’t really interested in solutions.

    “I was opposed to Cannery because the type of housing we are building there is unaffordable to young families.”

    News flash as long as we don’t build on a larger scale what does get built will be expensive. Did you ever take an Econ class?

    There was a young man who purchased a home for his young family at Cannery who spoke at the CC meeting about bicycle connectivity. Young families will buy at Cannery they just won’t be people who can’t qualify for the mortgage.

  7. Frankly

     non major manufacturing community

    Tia – you are the master of nuanced positions.  You can weave a story of indirect, noncommittal middle-ground like no other.  However, your hard bias becomes apparent with comments like this.   You are against certain things for reasons that only can come down to simply that you don’t like them.

    What the heck is “non major manufacturing community?”  So do I understand this to mean that you would not welcome, for example, Intel building a plant in one of the innovation parks?   Or if not that, how do you explain “major manufacturing”?   And maybe while you are at it, you can explain why Tia Will puts it in the “bad businesses” column.

      1. South of Davis

        Mark wrote:

        > What about Mori Seki’s major manufacturing facility?

        > How has that damaged the community?

        People have to look at a “big box” when riding over the bike bridge (when we could have had a community garden).  Many of my left of center friends hate to look at concrete tilt “big box” construction as much as my friends on the right hate to look at a guy in drag coming out of the ladies room…

        1. nameless

          And your left of center friends don’t mind looking at that large East Davis water storage facility painted as if it is in ugly faux camouflage colors, but somehow don’t like the looks of Mori Seki?  LOL

          1. David Greenwald

            As someone who lives in South Davis, except on the highway you can’t see the water storage facility. Mori Seiki was a huge coup for the city that provides sizable revenue. I wish we had access to more of that.

    1. Frankly

      By the way Tia Will – Since you have not answered the question posed, a friend of mine reminded me of the history of your employer:

      Kaiser Health evolved from industrial health care programs for construction, shipyard, and steel mill workers for the Kaiser industrial companies during the late 1930s and 1940s. It was opened to public enrollment in July 1945.

       

  8. Michael Harrington

    Frankly:  would you feel comfortable telling the readers what business you are in, and the profits that come from Davis development?  Everyone knows what I do for a living, but maybe your occupation and employer would be interesting to the DV readership?

    1. Frankly

      Mike – I have not hidden that from anyone.  I make loans to small business owner operators though a SBA program and a USDA program.   I make loans to the entrepreneur that started in his garage, then leased a small space and then grew and needed a larger space.  But the banks won’t give him a loan to buy a new space even though he is making a small profit.

      I also make a lot of loans to doctors, dentists, architects and lawyers.

      However, I will not be doing much of any business with the tech parks because I don’t lend to startups. Also, the SBA loans have a requirement that all owners of 20% or more become guarantors.  And any owner cannot be a public or government entity… and they also cannot be a large corporation… so when UCD owns a piece, there is not way to lend.

      So again, the innovation parks do not have much to do with my business.  By the way, I did not finance your building… 95% of my lending is in Southern CA and it will stay that way.

      My main interest is just to see the community stop declining into a broke and decrepit retirement village with a low-service downtown that turns into a nightclub mecca after 11 PM every night.

      And, because the mission of my business is really to grow local economies, improve communities and see people get good jobs that allow them to have a prosperous life, I am just supportive for these things.

      I will tell you one self-interest I have.  It is next to impossible for me to attract a new young professional or young family employee to locate here.  Housing costs combined with a demographic of grumpy old people and college students with your choice of 35 pizza restaurants and 25 Thai restaurants…. well let’s just say that Davis does not cut it.    And injection of young professionals and young families from these innovation parks would be good for me in this way, but also good for the vitality of the city.

  9. Michael Harrington

    Frankly:  Once we are past June 7, I would be interested in sitting down with you and see what can be done around town to improve the city’s economic health.  Best.

  10. Tia Will

    Matt and Frankly

    Matt – I meant that her support seems very tenuous.  She was about to bolt just because she was unhappy with things that CC member Swanson said.”

    This is just more of Frankly’s usual tripe when he has nothing constructive to say. The idea that I was “about to bolt” because I felt that Rochelle’s comments were needlessly negative and divisive is as patently absurd as much of what Frankly writes about me. For everyone’s information, I have been contacted by email by several individuals who are actively promoting Nishi making it clear that they were not in support of Rochelle’s aggressive and needlessly divisive comments.

     

    1. Frankly

      Tia – I owe you an apology.  I went back and re-read this and see you were writing hypothetically in the third person.

      Last Saturday, while at Farmer’s Market, I stopped to speak with a group of very young, eager students who were tabling for Measure A. One young women, prior to knowing my position, informed me that the opposition was just a bunch of greedy people who already had their homes in Davis. I wondered first where she had gotten this idea, and secondly who had coached her on her tabling technique. I guess I need look no further. If I were someone who based my decision on glib and insulting comments, she would have successfully just changed my vote from a “yes” to a “no”.

       

  11. Marina Kalugin

    David,   you hit the nail on the head….”small and incremental” growth…..that has not happened in decades really in Davis…. the giant mega communities like the cannery create too many homes too fast and then the developers advertise in the bay area to entice workers from that area to swarm upon Davis…..same thing happened on the other extreme of the spectrum….giant new low income apartment complexes which also exceed the demand of the moment in the Davis area and thus result in advertising in cities far from Davis where there are much larger low income populations.   The solutions are not easy as developers are much more happy building whatever is approved as fast as possible.  Instead of building what is required to fill the need, or for opportunities for those who  are already here, living in apartments or  studying or working on campus or other places locally. The larger developments and complexes open the floodgates and then new residents from far and wide are enticed to come here….and each time resulting in deleterious effects.

  12. Marina Kalugin

    For those who are not feeling the “shift in the force”…. we have another opportunity which we blew in the 60s…

    This IS the Age of Aquarius yet again and the force is with us and so forth…

    my friends who are not dead yet are rising up again and the hippies and those who truly care.

    and are NOT dead yet, and likely have more time and more money now….

    those of us who marched and protested and cried at injustice….

    ….the activists and so forth ARE prevailing.

    If one want to find out more about ME>..join me on FB…  that is where I hang out.

    The FACT that Bernie had over 21K in Sac and the same night the Killary had hardly a couple of dozen…

    AND, the mainstream media did NOT even post a picture….

    Always follow the money and especially the BIG money…

    Marina Kalugin (Rumiansev)

    once I retire…then everyone truly better watch out   LOL

    Have a blessed day and Peace out!

     

     

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