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Spirit Nest, Housing & Retail, Urban Cycling, Water-Go-Round

Welcome to Monitor Notes, a weekly roundup of news items, event announcements, and updates on past Bay Area Monitor articles.


Fly the Spirit Nest

As wildfires continue to devastate California, an art installation at Stafford Lake Park in Novato offers residents a way to reflect and be in nature. “Spirit Nest” is a 25-foot sculpture raising awareness about wildland fire risk. Artist Jayson Fann worked with volunteers this summer to weave hundreds of eucalyptus branches and tree sprouts to create the sculpture, sitting at the 139-acre park’s entrance. Harvested branches are part of ongoing fire fuel management in the Terra Linda/Sleepy Hollow Preserve, reducing vegetation that feeds fires. The project offers a timely example of artists working to support open space, a topic that Aleta George has previously explored in the Monitor.


Point of Departure

Bay Area residents experiencing home-price sticker shock are increasingly looking north in Sacramento. But increased buying activity there is actually making California’s capital city more expensive. The Mercury News interviewed Sacramento City Councilman Jay Schenirer for his take on Bay Area transplants, how Sacramento neighborhoods are changing, and why he’s more open to the idea of rent control. Want another view on Bay Area housing? Silicon Valley at Home and SPUR are hosting a discussion tomorrow (November 15) about the cost of incorporating retail into regional housing developments and when the approach should be required.


Go Along for the Ride

Learn basic rules of the road during Bike East Bay’s “Urban Cycling 101” two-hour workshop Saturday, November 17. They’ll also cover how to fit your helmet, avoid theft, ride after dark, and prevent common crashes. The class is offered at different locations and other dates through the end of the year. A separate “Road Class” follows, too, with practice aimed at biking confidently on streets, important for residents who rely on two wheels to meet transportation needs. View the Bike East Bay class schedule for more information or check the San Francisco Bike Coalition’s website for similar classes in the city.


Even Keel

Miss the boat update last week? The Bay Area Air Quality Management District announced that construction of the first ferry powered by hydrogen fuel cells is underway. Bay Area boat builders, ferry operators, and air officials participated in a keel-laying ceremony, marking the tradition of laying down the backbone of a vessel. When construction is complete next September, the “Water-Go-Round” will emerge as a 70-foot catamaran and eventually transport passengers around San Francisco Bay. The vessel should play an important role in combating greenhouse gas emissions as part of the region’s swelling ferry system.


Monitor Notes is produced by Cecily O’Connor. To receive it by email, scroll to the bottom of this page, enter your email address in the box under “RECEIVE EMAIL UPDATES,” and click the red “SIGN UP” button.

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