Richmond is embarking on a program aimed at making three major commercial corridors "into safe, walkable and economically thriving neighborhoods."
The Livable Corridors Project will focus on Macdonald Avenue, San Pablo Avenue and 23rd Street, using a method of zoning known as form-based code to establish regulations guiding development.
The process is a departure from traditional land-use zoning, according to the Form Based Code Institute, using "physical form, rather than separation of land uses, as their organizing principle."
Backers say that unlike traditional zoning, the focus is on regulating the look of buildings and open space, providing design guidelines.
The city began drafting such a proposal for 23rd Street in 2009 and now is expanding the process to Macdonald and San Pablo avenues.
The new code "will address physical characteristics and standards governing private realm components along the corridors, including building placement, form, height, frontage, and land use," with a goal of creating areas that are inviting and walkable.
Helping formulate the rules is a project advisory group of representatives from the community and area agencies.
The public can learn more about the effort at a kickoff event for the Livable Corridors Project from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 11 in the multipurpose room at Lovonya DeJean Middle School, 3400 Macdonald Ave.
Most of the project funding is from a Sustainable
For more details, visit www.ci.richmond.ca.us/livablecorridors.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH PROGRAMS: Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin will speak at the first of a series of weekly programs celebrating Black History Month at 6 p.m. Feb. 6 at Heritage Park at Hilltop, 3811 Lakeside Drive.
The series continues with Councilwoman Jovanka Beckles and West Contra Costa School District trustee Tony Thurmond on Feb. 13, Councilman Corky Booze and school board President Charles Ramsey on Feb. 18 and Councilman Nat Bates on Feb. 27, all at 6 p.m.
The series will include a contest based on the Maya Angelou poem "Phenomenal Woman."
For more details, call Nancy Barker, president of Seniors in Action Now Inc., at 408-849-8417 or Billy Alexander at 510-223-4680.
WEST COUNTY NOTES: The experience of growing up in blue-collar suburbia in the 1950s and 1960s is the basis for the novel "Lunch Bucket Paradise" by author Fred Setterberg.
The author will discuss and read from his book, which is set in the East Bay, at 1:30 p.m. Thursday at the Albany Library, 1247 Marin Ave. The program is free.
Tickets are $10 each, available in advance only at the Richmond Senior Center, 2525 Macdonald Ave. Details: 510-307-8085.
The free program is your chance to see how the department works in such areas as patrol, crime scene investigation, K-9 handling, detective work and more.
Classes will meet from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays starting Feb. 21 at the San Pablo Police Department, 3880 San Pablo Ave.
The academy is open to the West County community, with priority registration for San Pablo residents. An abbreviated background check is required.
For an application, call Sgt. Sergeant Gene Alameda at 510-215-3244.
Superior Court Judge Diana Becton will moderate a panel that includes attorney Lesa McIntosh (wills and trusts), Muriel Smalheiser (MediCare and MediCal), Sara Fisher (long-term care insurance), Rev. Alvin C. Bernstine (pastoral care) and morticians Renee Spearman and Lydia Stewart (burial decisions).
The free program includes continental breakfast. To register, call Glenda Roberts at 510-367-4614 or the church at 510-232-0193.
The evening, part of a concentrated effort to raise the funds needed to keep the swim center open, includes a pasta bar, salad, garlic bread, dessert and soft beverage (wine and beer on sale), along with live music and raffle prizes.
Tickets are $15 adults, $10 ages 13 to 18, and $5 children. Details:510-758-6134. To join or learn about the fundraising effort, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Since 2005, Ramirez has been the natural resources and lands management division manager at the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, and he was a senior adviser for the California Bay-Delta Authority from 2003-05. The new position requires state Senate confirmation.