New Year’s Eve seemed the right time to lay down some markers for 2010 for our city. It’s a personal list — please add your own thoughts in the comments.

  1. Real progress will be made in making Downtown a more vibrant, welcoming district. John Caner will get off to a positive start at the Downtown Business Association.
  2. Berkeley High School will see that science labs are vital for all of its students.
  3. The nostalgia (or political correctness) that keeps People’s Park an unsanitary, hostile eyesore will be replaced by a real determination to transform it into a space that the whole community can enjoy.
  4. The police will look across the street and get rid of the drug dealers in Civic Center Park.
  5. Local retailers will have a better year, and useful stores will fill the vacant storefronts in the Elmwood, Telegraph, Downtown and Solano.
  6. A plan will be launched to provide decent lighting and a safe road at the south end of Aquatic Park.
  7. The state will come to its senses and stop squeezing the UC budget, so that UC Berkeley can look to the future with confidence that it can remain a world-leading institution.
  8. We will all seize more opportunities to walk and bike in our magnificent Tilden Park.
  9. An exciting tech start-up will scorn the peninsula and SOMA and find a place in West Berkeley where it can thrive for years to come.
  10. Mayor Tom Bates will start using his Twitter account.

Lance Knobel

Lance Knobel (co-founder) has been a journalist for nearly 40 years. Much of his career was in business journalism. He was editor-in-chief of both Management Today, the leading business magazine in Britain,...

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  1. Considering the blood shed to establish People’s Park (and the battles fought over it in the decades since), I consider it highly unlikely that further attempts to change it will be a high priority item for the University in the near future. Though the Park has never been my cup of tea (though I’ve walked its perimeters countless times, I’ve never actually stepped foot in it), it doesn’t offend me. Best to let it be.

  2. Re: #6, Aquatic Park
    CalTrans owes us a sound wall on the east side of Hwy 80 but the city in its wisdom is holding out for a “living wall,” which could be much nicer. This is our way. Berkeley chose to raise taxes to underground Bart, yielding some precious open spaces. It found money for a nicer bike bridge over the freeway, though the hunt delayed construction for years.

    The sound wall has fallen off the radar but would make a huge difference at Aquatic Park. Without a plan to fund a perfect wall, maybe it’s time we settle for good enough. What if difference in cost were enough to increase the pipe diameter under the freeway such that the water would really flush?