October 22, 2009

Another "Community Conversations" workshop about WC's future tonight; have you gone to any; what do you think?

Tonight, the city will hold the final in Step 1 of its series of Community Conversations on Balancing the City's Future. And have any of you participated in these conversations? I have.

Wallnut Creek is holding these workshops because it is "projecting significant shortfalls for 2010-12." The information gathered during these workshops "will be used to help allocate resources to the areas the community values most."

The city is looking at six primary goals. They are:
--Strong neighborhoods and a sense of community
--Economic vitality
--Effective transportation and mobility
--Stewardship of the natural and built environment
--A safe community
--Culture, recreation and learning opportunities

At the workshop I attended, city staff broke participants into small groups, dedicated to one of the above goals. Participants in the small group were then invited to brainstorm their ideas about how the city can meet that particular goal.

I was in the economic vitality group, and participants first shared what they appreciate about Walnut Creek and then ideas for how they would define an economically vital community. Some of the responses for defining economic vitality included: no empty storefronts, good schools, a thriving downtown core, plenty of arts, culture and recreational opportunities, balance of local and chain businesses, affordable housing for people who work in Walnut Creek.

There was also mention of needing a city leadership that listens to its residents. This remark came from a resident who felt that city leaders didn't listen to residents during the initial debate about the Neiman Marcus project. Another participant, a local business leader, also raised the Neiman Marcus issue, by saying that the city needs to be free of outside influences. He was referring to the Michigan-based developer Taubman, which has funded petition drives and lawsuits to oppose the construction of a Neiman Marcus in Broadway Plaza.

If you don't make it tonight, you can still participate in Step 2 of these conversations. Step 2, to take place later this fall, is "dedicated to weighting the goals and their subgoals to determine whether some are more important at this time than others." More information for Step 2 is forthcoming.

You need to register for tonight's event by call ing (925) 256-3505 or by e-mailing


Anonymous said...

There's nothing in today's paper about the meeting. Where is it being held and do you think I could show up without preregistering?

Anonymous said...

Sorry. Just read here how to register for tonight's meeting. Thanks Soccer Mom for "keeping us in the loop."

Anonymous said...

These sound great. I hope to attend one. These type discussions will continue to keep this a great city.

Anonymous said...

I attended a session on a Saturday morning. It was well-run and there was a lot of brainstorming as part of the process. I encourage people interested in the future of WC to attend in Phase 1, if possible, but definitely in Phase 2.

Anonymous said...

Dog and Pony show.

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to talk about Neiman Marcus, the library and how the poor ole Dudums are struggling, with a bunch of old farts! Oh such fun!

Anonymous said...

Another "listening" session by the City but will they actually "HEAR" and act on what the citizens have to say? By citizens, I mean the few peole attending who do not hold an appointed position on a city commission and those who have no financial interests in the downtown area. Have attended this type of show that the city specializes in before and always find it interesting just how well controlled each focus group is. Those who are city hall enthusiasts are carefully spread out amongst each focus group so that very little meaningful or spontaneous input evolves.
Same results everytime and then nothing of value is acted upon. Total waste of staff time.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:31pm,

I might be an old fart but at least I participated honestly.

You seem to lack tolerance, young genius. In a few decades we can check on your attitudes and your digestive functionality.

Anon 12:39pm

Young Genius said...

Hey "old fart." Young Genius here. I don't care about my attitude, but I will care about my intestinal functionality! And I'm sure a new NM will help! It's bad enough to eat bad Mexican food from La Fagata and experience terrible service from all Dudum establishments!

Anonymous said...

Young Genius,

Please explain to the rest of us how you come to the conslusion that the arrival of Neiman Marcus will improve the food at La Fogata and then the service at Dudum establishments as well as taking care of your bodily functions.

Another "Oldish" Fart

Anonymous said...

Did anyone out there attend and was anything meaningful discussed?

Anonymous said...

Hi Anon 8:04,
I heard this morning that many people did attend and that ther was a lot of meningful discussion.
Sorry if you were not able to be there.

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:08PM....

You heard......from whom, how many people and what precisely was discussed?

Yes, I am sorry that I couldn't be there as I am interested in what happens in this town. I would like to be able to contribute my opinions about the future of my home town in a public forum and hope that someone would really listen.

Anonymous said...

Hi Anon 9:08,

This is Anon 9:08pm. I apologize for the TWO typos in my last post!

You asked where I got my information. I heard from a City staff member yesterday that there were about 40 people at the last community conversation. She did not say "precisely" what was discussed at that session and I did not take notes!

At the Saturday morning session I attended, my group talked about what constituted a safe Walnut Creek. We gave a lot of input about police and fire services, school safety (e.g. crosswalks) and traffic safety issues including the pedestrian/bike/auto interfaces. All of our ideas were saved for the next step in the process. Other groups in our session talked about different topics.

Residents and people that work in Walnut Creek will all have another opportunity to give input in Phase 2 of this process.

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:08 again.

Sorry, my last post should have been addressed to Anon 10:43. Wish I could correct my mistakes on this blog.

Must have coffee!