The City of Bakersfield is looking to sell some land at California Avenue and P Streets to Discovery Management Group, LLC. Construction of a new entertainment venue would be built on the land.
This concept art shows what the Discovery Bakersfield venue could look like at California Avenue and P Street. The city is looking to sell property in that area to Discovery Management Group LLC.
This concept art shows a potential entertainment area at California Avenue and P Street. The city is looking to sell the property to Discovery Management Group LLC. for the construction of the Discovery Bakersfield venue. Other plans for the property include a restaurant and a brewery.
Bakersfield could soon have more entertainment options in the downtown area.
The City of Bakersfield has a 223,000-square-foot piece of land at California Avenue and P Street that it intends to sell to Discovery Management Group LLC, partly for the construction of a venue called Discovery Bakersfield that would include a bowling center, restaurants, a music venue and more.
The city said Discovery Bakersfield would be a 38,000-square-foot, three-story building that would include 20 bowling lanes and a 950-seat music hall.
“This is a great opportunity,” said Community Services Director Jacqui Kitchen. “The City Council has had a vision of an entertainment area here for more than 10 years. I think the residents of Bakersfield deserve this.”
Kitchen said the goal is for the Discovery Management Group to eventually develop the rest of the property with restaurants and other entertainment uses, as well as a possible high-end hotel. Kitchen said she would also like to see some kind of microbrewery locate there.
Kitchen said the creek that runs along the eastern edge of the property would also serve as a great amenity. She said she would like to see a restaurant take advantage of the views.
“Mill Creek is the only opportunity in Bakersfield where you can have a restaurant looking out over the water,” she said. “You can almost imagine you’re sitting somewhere in Germany or Italy enjoying a meal.”
The company has already begun discussions with restaurants and other companies about developing on the property, Kitchen said.
During its April 11 meeting, the City Council authorized Mayor Karen Goh to sign a draft letter of intent from the city detailing terms for purchase of the property, the price of which has been set at $2.2 million. The city will now move forward with the purchasing process.
If the purchase goes through, the venue would be Discovery Management Group’s third location. The company already has a Discovery Ventura and is opening a Discovery San Luis Obispo this summer. Discovery Bakersfield would be its largest venue yet in terms of square footage.
Jeremy Pemberton, founder of Discovery Management Group, said at the council meeting that he believes the music hall in particular will draw a lot of people to the venue. Pemberton said he believes another music veue is greatly needed in Bakersfield.
“Currently, the City of Bakersfield and the county is void of a national touring spot for a music club that can host between 400 and 800 folks,” he said. “With the facility design that we have and the experience that we have, we know that we can create a facility that would eventually become a commodity for the touring industry.”
Pemberton and his brother Joshua initially approached the city in fall 2015 to discuss their desire to open a location in Bakersfield. However, Kitchen said plans were put on hold after the company suffered some setbacks in the process of developing its San Luis Obispo location.
Once the issues were settled and the project was moving ahead, the brothers returned to the city late last year to renew discussions.
“They believe Bakersfield has a young, growing population and a real desire for more entertainment choices here,” Kitchen said. “They think a location in Bakersfield would be a great addition. It’s not meant to replace any of our businesses, but enhance those and give the community more choices.”
If approved, construction of Discovery Bakersfield would start by the end of year and wrap up by June 2019, according to the Discovery Bakersfield Development Project Plan. A soft opening has been tentatively scheduled for June 5, 2019.
Discovery Bakersfield would be part of the city’s South Mill Creek Entertainment District, which already includes Maya Cinemas, the McMurtrey Aquatic Center and the Bakersfield Ice Center.
If approved, Discovery Bakersfield would be the second entertainment venue to open in the downtown area within just a few years. The BLVD, located on Buck Owens Boulevard, opens on April 19.
The 45,000-square-foot business will have a restaurant, three full-service bars, bowling lanes, laser tag, a ropes course, an arcade and more. It is owned by The BLVD LLC and Trifecta Management Group.
The two venues will share some services and features but Discovery Bakersfield would be more focused on music, Kitchen said.
Pemberton said he’s excited about the prospect of developing a project in downtown Bakersfield and working with the city.
“We’re excited about the opportunity here in Bakersfield and we look forward to providing a much-needed first-class concert venue and entertainment facility for the entire community,” he said.
You may not think of Clovis and its cowboy culture as a hot spot for craft beer. But that could be changing, as this growing city has begun attracting craft beer makers who see the potential for creating something special.
The city is already home to four breweries or tasting rooms, with a fifth to open soon and a sixth in the works. A few are clustered in an industrial area just east of Old Town Clovis, tucked in among muffler shops, gravel companies and warehouses. It’s the kind of vibe some craft brewers appreciate.
It’s not about being fancy, they say, it’s about making solid beers that people like.
“We see a lot of potential out here,” said Dave Dechow, one of the brewers at Tactical Ops Brewing at 1131 Railroad Ave.
Several craft brewers said they are drawn to Clovis because of the fierce loyalty to local business, the tight-knit community and a growing fan base of craft beer drinkers.
Tactical Ops, one of three breweries in Clovis, opened a new brewery and tasting room three months ago to lots of thirsty customers. Its original location remains on Shields between Fowler and Armstrong avenues.
The new brewery and tasting room in Clovis has a military theme, seats 49 and offers 12 to 14 beers, including stouts, IPAs, and ales.
Recently, Dechow and fellow brewer Brett Elsberry were putting the final touches on their popular honey blonde ale that’s made with locally sourced honey from Enzo’s Table in Clovis.
Elsberry said weekends are busy and customers are drinking as much beer as the brewery can produce.
“It’s very possible that we may be looking for a third location,” Ellsberry said. “We are growing and trying to keep our beer in stock. And all of this is just by word of mouth and social media.”
As a testament to the brewery’s growth, Ellsberry recently left his day job as a pharmacy technician after 18 years to work full-time at the brewery.
“We are pretty optimistic about things right now,” he said.
Other breweries that have opened in Clovis include 559 Beer at 356 Pollasky Ave. and Zone 9 Brewing at 1450 Tollhouse Road.
On the horizon are Kings River Brewing Company at 1050 San Jose Ave. that expects to open in about 30 days and MachineHead Brewing Co., 52 W. Palo Alto Ave. , is planning to open this fall.
All of that is in addition to the House of Pendragon tap room at 1345 N. Willow and Riley’s Brew Pub, 2674 Owens Mountain Pkwy.
Clovis city officials couldn’t be happier about the organic growth of the local craft beer scene. Shawn Miller, business development manager for the City of Clovis, said the city is helping when it can, but the breweries are truly doing it on their own.
“We are just trying to clear the decks and left stuff happen,” Miller said.
Miller sees the potential of creating a special event linking the city’s trail system with several of the breweries in the area. The Old Town Clovis Craft Beer Crawl that features a mix of California breweries is already a popular springtime event.
“We know there is a value in having people come to town for special events,” Miller said.
Elsberry said there may be just a handful of breweries now, but there will be more.
Brad Edmunds, an owner of Zone 9 Brewing, agrees that the city is ripe for more breweries. He said people in Clovis are eager for more dining, drinking and entertainment options. Plus, his customers are into trying new and different craft beers. Zone 9 brews a variety of beer, including a peach hefeweizen, a German style wheat beer; a coconut coffee porter and a New England-style IPA that’s infused with mango.
“It’s fruity on the front, creamy in the middle and hoppy on the end,” Edmunds said.
Two of the newest breweries in Clovis will be open in the coming months.
King Chan is the brewer and owner of Kings River Brewing. His brewery and tasting room is not far from the others in south east Clovis and hopes to be open in about 30 days.
His tasting room has rustic and Americana touches and will accommodate about 25 people.
Chan, who has been a home brewer for 15 years, is skilled at making several styles of beer including a milk stout, an IPA, and an ale with a clean, crisp taste of a lager.
Chan is confident that people visiting the Clovis breweries will find enough variety in beer styles to satisfy everyone’s tastes.
One of the cities newest brewers, Rob Arabian of MachineHead Brewing Company, promises to bring some more excitement to the budding craft brew scene. Arabian’s brewery will be open this fall in a new industrial complex on Palo Alto, west of Clovis and south of Herndon avenues.
“We are going to be launching several different type of programs that a lot of people usually drive to places like San Diego for,” Arabian said.
Arabian is careful not to reveal too much about his beers, other than to say he will be making some “barrel-aged stuff and juicy IPAs.”
He also said there will be plenty of space for food trucks to park and he may do some beer-themed dinners. Arabian says he didn’t think twice about where he wanted to open his brewery.
“I really love the vibe of this city,” he said. “It’s a place that appreciates classic, local favorites, but also is home to hip new restaurants, coffee shops and breweries. It feels like the perfect fit for us.”
San Joaquin Valley Homes and Presidio Residential Capital to build
“Greystone” and “Ashton Park” to be designed for entry-level buyers and young families
Two new residential communities, called Greystone and Ashton Park and totaling 218 detached single-family homes priced from the mid-$200,000s, are planned for Visalia by San Joaquin Valley Homes and Presidio Residential Capital. The developers say they have closed on 29 acres (151 lots) and plan to close an additional 19 acres (67 lots) next year for the projects.
Groundbreaking is expected in April and the neighborhoods are expected to be open for sale by early 2019. Their retail value is estimated to exceed $52 million.
“Ideally located on prime Visalia land in the Northwest with easy access to excellent schools, these communities will be extremely appealing to first-time and move-up buyers and young families,” says Danny Garcia, vice president of sales at SJV Homes, which is based in Visalia.
Greystone will offer 127 traditional homes with six floor plans ranging from 1,658 to 3,205 square feet on lots ranging in size from 6,800 to 8,200 square feet with some premium lots over
10,000 square feet. Ashton Park will offer 91 garden homes with three floor plans ranging from 1,297 to 1,597 square feet on lots ranging in size from 4,700 to 6,000 square feet. These homes will feature nine-foot ceilings, pitched tile roofs, tile flooring, granite countertops, stainless appliances and two-car garages.
The new communities are located on the northeast corner of West Riggin Avenue and North Akers Street across the street from the new Ridgeview Middle School. The new residential neighborhoods are located less than four miles from downtown and about four miles east of Highway 99.
Founded in 2013 by Joe Leal, Jim Robinson and Randy Merrill, SJV Homes closed on its 1,000th home in late December 2017.
The Visalia communities are SJV Homes’ 17th and 18th joint venture projects with Presidio Residential Capital, a San Diego based real estate investment company that funds 100 percent of the projects and operations of SJV Homes.
According to the National Association of Home Builders’ formula to determine the local impact of single-family housing in typical metro areas, adding 218 single-family homes will generate $63.7 million in local income, $7.9 million in taxes and other revenue for local governments and 875 local jobs.
CodeHS, a company that provides web-based computer science curriculum, has partnered with Reinvent Stockton Foundation to bring coding classes to Stockton high schools.
The Code Stockton initiative formed by the two entities is geared toward expanding computer science programs in Stockton high school classrooms.
“We’re very excited to be partnering with the Reinvent Stockton Foundation to empower Stockton students to meaningfully impact the future,” said CodeHS CEO Jeremy Keeshin in a statement. “With extensive online resources and passionate teachers, our goal is to bring high-quality computer science courses to high schools in the city of Stockton.”
Organizers of the initiative pointed to a U.S. Department of Labor study that showed there will be 500,000 new computing jobs created in the next eight years nationwide, but only 40 percent of high schools have computer science classes.
Participating schools will receive “free introductory computer science courses, online and in-person professional development training for teachers, CodeHS Pro accounts and ongoing implementation support for the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 school years.”
Interested schools can sign up at CodeStockton.com before Apr. 10, 2018.
Like any debut, the Fresno Football Club’s first game was not without a few glitches.
The scoreboard wasn’t working. A fire alarm went off for no reason. Merchandise sales were stalled by sluggish iPads.
But none of the nearly 8,000 soccer fans who turned out Saturday evening at Chukchansi Park seemed to mind. This was, after all, the first game of the first professional soccer team in an absolutely soccer-mad part of the state.
“We’re making history with a new team in Fresno,” said Alex Llamas, 26, a fourth-grade teacher and soccer coach who lives in Clovis. “To bring a soccer club here is amazing.”
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George Aguirre, a Reedley High School senior, was blunt. “Soccer is our life,” he told me before the game started. “We never actually thought this would happen.”
You can forgive Fresnans for feeling ignored by professional sports. Fresno State’s teams are beloved, of course. But when it comes to pro sports, Fresno has only the Grizzlies, a minor league baseball team affiliated with the Houston Astros.
Despite being home to more than 500,000 people — making it the most populous city in the San Joaquin Valley – Fresno often has the feel of a sleepy little town. On a weekend, downtown streets are mostly empty.
Fresno Mayor Lee Brand, who has been working with city officials for years to revitalize the sclerotic downtown, told me that he hopes the soccer team — known as both the Foxes and the Zorros (Spanish for foxes) — will help get the city’s blood pumping again.
“It’s a big plus for the city of Fresno,” he said. “We have a large Hispanic population of very rabid soccer fans. It will be great for downtown.”
The problem is, Fresno is geographically isolated. It’s smack in the middle of the state, surrounded by farmland. It’s about a four-hour drive from Los Angeles, and a four-hour drive from San Francisco.
Like many smallish big cities, Fresno struggles with its identity.
Years ago, it called itself the “All-American city.” Some boosters have called it “America’s best little city.” At some point, the Fresno/Clovis Convention and Visitors Bureau dubbed it “California’s year-round playground.”
And then, at least briefly, the city slogan was “Be world class. Be Fresno.” (Some have joked that Fresno should change its name to Fres-yes, but that’s a nonstarter.)
Three years ago, state and federal officials descended on a dirt lot next to a late 19th century Southern Pacific train depot for the groundbreaking of Gov. Jerry Brown’s legacy project, the nation’s first high-speed rail.
There was much talk about Fresno finally coming into its own as a major California city, connected by high-speed rail to Silicon Valley and San Francisco to the north, and Los Angeles and San Diego to the south. At the time, I wrote that the celebration was so premature it was like “having a christening for a baby that’s still an embryo in a petri dish.”
The hurdles for this project continue to be immense, as my colleague Ralph Vartabedian has relentlessly chronicled. But the payoff for Fresno, if it comes, could be incalculable.
At least while Fresno waits for its moment in the sun, the town has a new professional sports team to root for.
The team’s owner, Ray Beshoff, is a charismatic Englishman who got to know Fresno after he bought a Mercedes-Benz dealership in town a few years back.
I’ve known Ray for many years, ever since he fell in love with my friend Liza in Greece the summer after our junior year in France. A few months later, he left Liverpool with a few hundred dollars in his pocket and showed up on Liza’s doorstep on Balboa Island. After coming home from class at UC Irvine and finding him on the couch one too many times, she suggested he get a job. He ended up selling cars. Lots and lots of cars. They’ve been married for decades.
“Fresno is really underrepresented in the sporting world,” said Beshoff, who had been toying with buying a pro sports team for a while. “This is a community starving for soccer.”
He put together a group of investors and created the new Fresno Football Club, which is part of the United Soccer League, a step below Major League Soccer.
Beshoff, who owned a Mercedes dealership in San Jose from 2002 to 2015, got to know soccer legend Frank Yallop, who was then head coach of the San Jose Earthquakes, and is now the general manager of the Fresno Football Club. Fans may remember Yallop as the head coach of the Earthquakes when they won the MLS cup in 2001 and 2003. Or as the L.A. Galaxy coach who in 2007 brought David Beckham to town.)
Yallop and coach Adam Smith have assembled an international roster — players are from Brazil, Argentina, Sierra Leone, England, Scotland and the U.S.
“The big plan,” Yallop said, “is to have our own stadium. We’re hoping to stay downtown.”
The United Soccer League, he said, expects the team to build its own stadium in two to five years.
On Saturday, the Foxes played another new expansion team, the Las Vegas Light. The Light scored their first goal in the first two minutes of play, and soon the score was 3-0.
It would not be until minute 72 of the 90-minute game that Fresno scored their first goal. In the closing minutes, the Foxes scored a second goal, leaving the final score at 3-2.
“Overall, it was an amazing game,” said Llamas, the fourth-grade teacher, when I reached him by phone after the match. He had the good fortune of sitting next to the Fire Squad, the football club’s independent pep squad, dozens strong, who played drums and chanted during the game. “They bring such a great environment to the field. It makes everyone feel welcome.”
Llamas said he wasn’t disappointed by the Foxes’ loss.
“Right now is a big moment for Fresno,” Llamas said. “Professional teams, the high-speed rail. It’ll bring a lot more people and put us on the map.”
There are new restaurants coming, a few saying goodbye and some places shaking things up a bit.
Empty restaurant spaces are getting snapped up quickly by newcomers, said Craig Holdener, a vice president at commercial real estate firm Newmark Grubb/Pearson Commercial.
Some of the new restaurants are taking over spaces that haven’t been empty for long, like the former Guadalajara and Mother Mary’s at Willow and Nees avenues.
Others are building new kitchens in existing buildings or in new shopping centers.
Here’s a look at what’s happening.
1. Butterfish California Poke opened its first Clovis restaurant late last month. At 1850 Herndon Ave., it’s in the new shopping center at Fowler Avenue, next to the Five Guys Burgers & Fries.
Like the original Butterfish at Friant Road and Fresno Street (and another in the works at Palm and Herndon avenues), the restaurant specializes in poke. That’s the Hawaiian-inspired dish of raw, bite-size pieces of tuna or other fish.
The new Butterfish offers some hot appetizers that the existing one doesn’t: Sriracha shrimp, Tokyo fries (sweet potatoes fries with a sweet-and-spicy drizzle) and maitake (tempura mushrooms served with a curry ranch dipping sauce).
In addition to the typical ingredients offered in poke bowls, the Clovis location has slow-cooked, thin-sliced beef and a few other new options.
“There’s quite a few new and different things out there,” said co-owner Rema Koligian. “We’re just trying to test the market and see what resonates with people.”
The new place is a little more colorful than the original too, with bright art and wall treatment that evokes an ocean wave. The restaurant also has a walk-up window where people can pick up food they’ve ordered via the Butterfish app.
The Napa Dog with Tioga-Sequoia beer in the background, shown at Rocket Dog Gourmet Brats and Brew Thursday, September 10, 2015 in Fresno, Calif. The eatery has opened its first Clovis location, at
The restaurant serves sausages piled high with toppings and house-made potato chips. The Napa dog, for example, is a sweet chicken sausage on a grilled baguette with fig-onion jam and crumbled goat cheese.
Rocket Dog also offers sandwiches and salads.
The restaurant has 24 taps stocked with craft beer, about double the number at its original location at on Shaw Avenue near Highway 41.
That same center has two restaurants in the works that probably won’t open for a while.
3. Clovis Pizza Subs Yogurt will open next to Slice of India, probably this summer.
4. 13 Prime Steak has signed a lease for the former Mother Mary’s pizza place, but still has a lot of work ahead of it before opening.
But after four years of planning, construction costs have quadrupled and the owners changed their minds, said Amy Rose, the director of operations who owns the Valley franchises with her father, Bob Rose.
This isn’t the end of Black Bear here, though. The owners are sniffing around for a location, especially in Fresno. Stay tuned for more on that.
At the Fresno Steak ‘n Shake, which opened last March, cook Daniel Aguilar, left, and other employees practice for opening day.
There’s a lot of buzz about what might be happening at the northeast corner of Willow and Alluvial avenues, but not a lot of answers.
Here’s what we know: On Feb. 5, the Clovis City Council approved a request for a general plan amendment that would change the corner’s low-density residential designation to one that would allow a convenience store and two restaurants.
That application identifies Steak ‘n Shake as one of the restaurants, confirmed Orlando Ramirez, a senior planner for the City of Clovis.
But that’s the only piece of evidence linking Steak ‘n Shake to Clovis. A barrage of phone calls to Steak ‘n Shake’s corporate office, other city departments, and firms that represent the applicant produced nothing – not one return phone call.
The Steak ‘n Shake name is not used in a conditional-use permit application and the company has not submitted any plans to the city.
What does all that mean? Steak ‘n Shake could very well be intending to come to Clovis. But there’s a reason they keep quiet early in a process like this. A lot can happen in the months, even years, it can take to develop a corner. And plans can fall through.
Old Town Donuts opened last week, serving all kinds of doughnuts.
Old Town Donuts
7. Old Town Donuts at 30 W. Shaw Ave. opened Saturday. The doughnut shop is in the same center as Elephant Lounge near Minnewawa Avenue.
It has colorfully frosted doughnuts, doughnut holes, bear claws and “jelly drops” – mini-doughnuts with fillings such as lemon.
Aurore Chhun and her husband run the shop, though it’s Chhun who has the background in restaurants. Born in France, her family moved to Cambodia when she was 10. At one point, she and her parents ran a restaurant on a boat, with her mother cooking as her father steered the boat.
But after the boat burned down, she ended up in Clovis, where her husband is from.
The former Forestiere’s Place, 401 Clovis Ave., bottom floor of the tall building at center, has been a new owner and will become The Bottleneck Bistro.
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8. Bottleneck Bistro will eventually open in Old Town Clovis. You may have noticed Forestiere’s Place, at 401 Clovis Ave. Suite 106, has closed. It was bought by a new owner, Mark Kazanjian, who will reopen it in the coming weeks or months.
He’s redoing the interior and working on a new menu.
The restaurant will focus on quality wines, craft beer and spirits, with a full bar.
Although the menu will have sandwiches, burgers and salads, it will be a different from typical pub fare, Kazanjian said. It will include short ribs braised in red wine and dried mission figs, beer-battered fried cheese curds, and mac ‘n‘ cheese balls stuffed with cream cheese and bacon.
Chicago’s Pizza With-A-Twist is planning to open its third restaurant in the area, this one at 497 N. Clovis Ave. near Arsenio’s Mexican Food.
Chicago’s serves traditional pizza (like all-meat and vegetarian fare), but also pizza inspired by Indian food. It’s a bit like taking the dishes you get at Indian restaurants and turning them into toppings atop a typical American pizza. The menu includes the popular butter chicken pizza and Tandoori chicken pizza. Several pizzas have paneer, the Indian cheese sometimes mistaken for tofu.
Chicago’s is a chain with restaurants all over California. It has two locations in Fresno (at Kings Canyon Road and Clovis Avenue, and at Shaw and Marks avenues).
There’s still a lot of work left to be done inside, so it may be a few weeks or months until it opens.
Cool Hand Luke’s, 955 Shaw Ave., has changed hands and have added lunch and now open at 11 a.m. daily.
The restaurant pulled some favorites from the dinner menu to offer at lunch, including sandwiches, burgers and salads. It added six new lunch dishes. One – perhaps taking a page from Olive Garden’s popular lunch option – features unlimited soup, salad and sourdough rolls for $8.95.
Sergio Hinojosa, walking his bike, looks forward to the opening of Triangle Burgers Drive In, 200 W. Shaw Ave. in Clovis.
The popular old-school diner has three locations in Fresno and is known for its burgers, crinkle-cut fries and milkshakes.
Workers have ripped out the interior of the restaurant and are redoing it. The owner had hoped to open in December, but is now looking at an April debut.
Jersey Mike’s Subs has closed a Clovis location, but still has five locations in Fresno and Clovis.
12. Jersey Mike’s Subs, which opened in 2015 at the corner of Shaw and Villa avenues, closed Jan. 14. The company says it plans to relocate the restaurant, though just where and when haven’t been determined.
Mickey’s Yogurt is selling raw cookie dough that’s safe to eat.
13. Mickey’s Yogurt at Shaw and Armstrong avenues still is serving frozen yogurt, but has added something different: raw cookie dough.
We’ve all heard the warnings about raw cookie dough because of the potential for salmonella from raw eggs (and lately, E. coli from flour). So owner Tiffany Howell and business partner Daryl France – who is also her grandmother and Mickey is Howell’s grandfather – came up with a cookie dough recipe that’s safe to eat. There are no eggs in the recipe and it uses treated flour.
Customers can buy the cookie dough by the scoop, similar to scoops of ice cream. One scoop starts at $3.49 and toppings can be added.
Slater, the 11-time world champion considered the best of all time, spent 10 years working with a USC aerospace engineer to design a perfect wave, peeling 700 yards along a recontoured water ski lake. Videos of the wave, with hollow barrel sections and open faces to do aerials and cutbacks, have captivated the surfing world since the first one appeared in December 2015. But only a select few have been invited to see it, much less ride it.
“A wave of that shape sits in the subconsciousness of every surfer in the world,” longtime Surfer magazine editor Steve Hawk told The Times in 2016. “That wave is exactly the fantasy wave I drew on the margins of my notebooks when I was in high school.”
For the first time, the facility, the Surf Ranch, will be open to the public during the contest, according to a World Surf League news release. The two-day competition on May 5-6, the Founders’ Cup of Surfing, will have “a festival backdrop honoring the culture of surfing — food, music, beverage, art and special guests will all be on site for enjoyment.”
In an unusual format, the wave-riders will not compete individually but in five-person teams (three men, two women) representing different parts of the world: Australia, the U.S., Europe and Brazil, and one team representing the best athletes from other surfing parts of the world, such as South Africa and Japan.
Global teams of engineers and surfers are vying to build artificial wave pools that can produce high-quality waves that come in rapid enough succession to create an economically viable surf amusement park. An obstacle has been energy use and the length of time the water needs to settle after a wave rolls through before the next one can come.
At a contest, this is less of an issue because of the small number of surfers in the water. And the bonus for contest organizers: the mood swings of nature are mostly out of the equation; no need to wait for distant storms to produce ocean swells. Barring mechanical failure, perfect waves will be coming on May 5.
Will triple the size of the student union building
Student fees to increase
Students at California State University, Bakersfield have approved a referendum to more than triple the size of the Student Union and build an aquatics facility, according to Associated Students Inc. A total of 1,768 students voted on the referendum, with 1,086 (61.4 percent) voting “yes” and 682 students (38.6) voting “no.”
“The fruition of the project will encourage student development, improve student life, provide exceptional services and advance the CSUB community,” says ASI President Mariela Gomez.
The total expansion will be approximately 80,000 square feet – about 40,000 for the two-story Student Union expansion and 40,000 for the new Student Recreation Center Aquatics Facility. The current 17,000-square-foot student union was originally built in 1987 when the campus population was about 5,100. Since then, CSUB has grown to more 10,000 students.
The $37 million project — $27 million for the Student Union and $10 million for the aquatics center – will be funded through a combination of sources, including student fees. Student fees for the Student Union expansion will increase by roughly $40 per semester in the first year and tier up to $160 per semester over a four-year period for the Student Union expansion.
Fees for the SRC Aquatic Facility are roughly $20 per semester and will not tier. ASI leaders will meet soon with campus administrators to determine when the fee collection will begin. Students who currently receive financial aid will have all fees covered without any out-of-pocket expenses. CSUB anticipates that the Student Union expansion will need three years of fee collection before the construction process can begin.
Planning for the construction of the SRC Aquatic Facility, which will be located in the current dirt lot on Kroll Way across the street from parking lot K2 and next to the SRC soccer field, will begin immediately, and the timeline for completion will be determined after construction begins. Approximately 80-100 jobs will be created by the projects.
More electric vehicle charging stations are coming to California after the state approved an initiative to expand charging projects into low-income cities.
The Central Valley has opportunity to secure some of that infrastructure.
The California Public Utilities Commission approved the new projects, which totaled 15 proposals, on Jan. 11.
Approved projects include four PG&E pilots totaling $8 million to be added in PG&E coverage areas.
It’s part of a larger $1 billion investment that will add 5,300 new charging points to the state, representing a commitment to new EV infrastructure and related transportation electrification projects.
Sites for the new builds have yet to be determined.
PG&E will partner with businesses and individuals to advance its initiatives, which include bringing EV access and technology to medium/heavy-duty fleet vehicles, school buses, refrigeration trucks and parking spaces. PG&E will also provide better EV education for homeowners looking to install charging stations in their residence.
The San Joaquin Valley can look forward to one project that targets the region specifically: electrifying refrigeration units and other auxiliary power units of agricultural and long-haul trucks in the San Joaquin Valley by providing a minimum of 15 electrified parking spaces at one parking site.
The proposals were submitted last year by Pacific Gas and Electric, Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas and Electric under Senate Bill 350 and received expedited review.
Sunset Magazine calls Fresno “California’s most affordable big city,” which sounds like something you might see on the archway coming into town.
It’s better than nothing.
The lifestyle magazine put Fresno on its list of 20 game-changing places to live – in the western part of the United States, anyway. More specifically, the city ranked fourth out of four in the northern region of California, behind Sacramento, Eureka and Truckee.
In its brief description of the city, the magazine mentions the money (millions) spent to refurbish Fulton Street and the promise of the high-speed rail project.
“Once the nation’s first bullet train links it to Silicon Valley via high-speed rail, watch out,” it wrote.
This isn’t the first time Fresno has gotten love in the pages of Sunset. Sea Lion Cove at Fresno Chaffee Zoo was featured as on of the magazine’s favorite-things lists. Christmas Tree Lane was one of its favorite holiday lights displays. The magazine even ran a feature on the event.