Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Summit's focus is downtown Vallejo improvements

Times-Herald staff report
Posted: 05/05/2010 01:03:59 AM PDT

With improvements to downtown Vallejo a common goal, a second summit will be held tonight to review progress and talk about new efforts, organizers said.

The summit starts at 6:30 p.m. at the Empress Theater, 330 Virginia St.

"It's an opportunity for individuals and groups interested in creating change in the downtown to report to each other on what they have achieved," organizer and downtown business owner Janet Sylvain said.

The summit is sponsored by the Central Core Restoration Corporation. Sylvain is the board's chairwoman.

The first summit was in February, drawing dozens to the theater to talk how to draw more people downtown, and to make both immediate and long-term improvements.

Tonight, representatives from a number of groups and individuals will give reports on progress since the first summit.

Those include the Vallejo Community Arts Foundation, Chamber of Commerce, Empress Theater, Convention & Visitors Bureau, Waterfront Alliance, Waterfront Artists, and the city of Vallejo.

Efforts include recent waterfront clean-up, attempts to crack down on code enforcement violators, a new branding name for the city, and work in surrounding residential neighborhoods to improve conditions, Sylvain said.

Meanwhile, city officials will report on new infrastructure improvements downtown, including new trees and sidewalks on Virginia Street, a new bus transfer station and renovations to the Ferry Building.

Upcoming events to draw more people to the area and to the waterfront also will be discussed.

A follow-up summit to keep momentum going will take place July 21, Sylvain said.