This Week at City Hall - Downtown and Neighborhood Revitalization
09/26/2011
Busy, exciting times ahead for our downtown, neighborhood revitalization efforts
 
These are exciting times for our efforts to revitalize Downtown Fresno and its surrounding neighborhoods. 
 
Last Friday, we took a monumental step in those efforts with the release of the draft Downtown Neighborhoods Community Plan, which lays out the vision for fundamentally changing the condition of more than 7,000 acres in the middle of our city.
 
The draft plan is available at www.fresnodowntownplans.com.
 
A series of public meetings will be held beginning on Tuesday, Oct. 4, at Roosevelt High School to review the plan.  Other meetings are scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 12, at Edison High School; Tuesday, Oct. 18, at Tehipite Middle School; and Tuesday, Oct. 25, at City Council chambers.  All meetings will start at 5:30 p.m.
 
Next month, we’ll be releasing another critical document, the draft Fulton Corridor Specific Plan.  A key outcome of the Plan and its accompanying environmental analysis will be the determination of the Fulton Mall’s future form and function, along with the authority to achieve that future.
 
The public will have approximately 30 days to review the draft plans after their release.  At the conclusion of the public review period, the Community Advisory Committee for each plan will convene to vote on a recommendation to formally “initiate” the plans.  Staff will then present the recommendation to the director of the Development and Resource Management Department to initiate the environmental review.
 
During the environmental review period, the public will have legally required opportunities to comment on the drafts and their accompanying environmental documentation.
 
The plans are expected to be adopted in late 2012.
 
Here are some other interesting developments related to our urban core:
  • On Wednesday, Mayor Swearengin will learn first-hand about the exciting new plans for the former Mexican Consulate building in Downtown Fresno when she tours the facility to see the work that’s being done to turn the building into a home for entrepreneurs and small businesses.
     
  • Fresno City Council this week will consider approving federal funding to help rehabilitate Hotel Fresno into a mixed-use, mixed-income development with six affordable units, 19 moderate-income units, 47 market rate units, and more than 19,500 square feet of commercial/retail space on the ground floor.
     
  • The PBID Partners of Downtown Fresno’s new president/CEO, Kate Borders, is now on the job.   Ms. Borders formerly served as executive director of East Town Association Milwaukee and brings a great deal of energy, enthusiasm and expertise to our downtown revitalization efforts.
     
  • Stay tuned for some exciting news about one of Downtown Fresno’s most important buildings.  We’ll have an announcement soon.
 
Mayor Swearengin’s Activities
 
While some of these activities outlined below are not public meetings, these are some of the issues being addressed this week by Mayor Swearengin:
  • Meeting with California High Speed Rail Authority officials to discuss the status of the revised business plan, which will be released soon;
     
  • Meeting with officials from the Economic Development Corporation to discuss the impact of high-speed rail;
     
  • Making a presentation on “The Power of Leadership through Education” at a Heald College student luncheon;
     
  • Participating in a meeting of the Fresno County Zoo Authority;
     
  • Attending an open house for Fresno State’s Lyles Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, recognized as one of the leading entrepreneur centers in the country; and
     
  • Participating in a meeting of the Fresno Council of Governments.
 
It’s Local Bites Week!!!
 
On Tuesday, September 27, Mayor Swearengin will be celebrating our locally owned restaurants at Wassabi, 1085 East Herndon Avenue.  Please join us at this dinner – or plan to eat at a locally owned restaurant at least once a month to help our local economy.If you’re planning to join Mayor Swearengin, just remember – when it comes to the bill, you’re on your own!
 
All of the dates and additional information on the Local Bite Night schedule is posted on the Taste Fresno website at www.TasteFresno.com/localbites. For a great list of locally owned restaurants, see the City of Fresno’s Local Business Directory or go to www.FresnoLocalBiz.com.  
 
‘Go Green and Clean’ at Pilibos Park
 
The “Go Green and Clean” park beautification program will be held at Pilibos Park, 4945 E.  Lane, on Saturday, Oct. 1.
 
In the program, volunteers participate in basic park care through litter removal, flower bed raking, pruning, painting, graffiti removal and other light tasks from 8 a.m. to noon.
 
Volunteers are encouraged to wear long pants, hats, gloves and sun block and bring plenty of drinking water. Basic work tools and supplies will be provided by the City of Fresno.  Each volunteer will be required to complete a volunteer form and waiver.
 
This Week’s Meetings
 
Here are other city-related meetings this week:
  • Historic Preservation Commission, Monday, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., City Hall Conference Room A (2165A);
     
  • City Council meeting, Thursday, 8:30 a.m., Fresno City Council chambers.
     
Follow Mayor Swearengin, City of Fresno on Twitter
 
For up-to-date information on happenings related to the City of Fresno, follow Mayor Swearengin on Twitter @MayorSwearengin or the City of Fresno @CityofFresno.