Controversial Derby Street Field Also on Agenda
The proposed baseball diamond that would force the closure of a block of Derby Street and a bid to rename Old City Hall are two of the items facing Berkeley’s City Council tonight.
Denied a post office named in her honor, former Berkeley City Councilmember Maudelle Shirek may gain Old City Hall in its stead, if Max Anderson and Darryl Moore have their way.
The two councilmembers have placed a resolution on tonight’s council agenda calling for the structure to be renamed in her honor.
East Bay Democratic Rep. Barbara Lee had been trying for two years to get Congress to rename the city’s main post office after Shirek, a 94-year-old veteran of the Civil Rights Movement who served on the Berkeley City Council for two decades.
When the measure came up for a vote in the House of Representatives on Sept. 27, the measure was shot down in a party line vote spearheaded by Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa.
One Derby Street resolution comes from the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission, which urges the city endorse the Berkeley Unified School District’s plan to close Derby between Martin Luther King Jr. Way and Milvia Street so a multi-purpose athletic field—including a regulation baseball diamond—can be built.
The alternative resolution from City Manager Phil Kamlarz that, among other things, supports the project in concept, advises BUSD that the council can’t act on the street closure until the district concludes a project environmental review, and encourages the district to explore options other than street closure.
Other items on the agenda include:
• A vote on an appeal from a Zoning Adjustments Board decision to grant a permit to demolish a single-family home at 1532 Martin Luther King Jr. Way and replace it with a three-unit project.
• Discussion of the proposed new transportation services fee that would assess developers for costs of mitigating the impacts of new traffic generated by new construction. Kamlarz also recommends a Feb. 21 hearing on the measure.
• A resolution from the Community Environmental Advisory Commission asking Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to provide more information on planned nanotechnology projects at the lab’s Molecular Foundry.
The meeting begins at 7 p.m. in Old City Hall, 2134 Martin Luther King Jr. Way.?