Neighbors, join Halcyon Neighborhood AssociationÕs Facebook group at!/group.php?gid=292160762499!


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Halcyon Neighborhood Association E-News 4/2/13


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Items appearing in the HNA E-News are deemed to be of general interest to neighbors but do not necessarily reflect the views of Halcyon Neighborhood Association (HNA), its Steering Committee, or the Editor. The EditorÕs introductory comments express her personal viewpoint.

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1. Halcyon Neighborhood Participation in Citywide Disaster Prep Exercise, Sat. 4/27, 9-11:30 a.m.

2. Register for the 4/27 Citywide Disaster Prep Exercise! (You DonÕt Have to Be Physically Present at the Exercise to Participate!)

3. Disaster Prep: Take Thirty Seconds to Help Berkeley Be Better Prepared!

4. Crime-Watch Updates

5. Whole Foods Market News: Community Meeting, Weds. 4/10/13, 9:15 a.m.

6. Next Issue of Neighborhood Update from the BPD Available for Downloading

7. Bateman Neighborhood Association Files Appeal to Stop a Starbucks at Ashby/Telegraph

8. Tool Library Reopening!

9. Link to an Article on Telegraph Avenue Vacancies by a Le Conte Neighbor

10. Bird-Feeding Notes from a Neighbor



EditorÕs Introductory Note:


Thank you to the handful of neighbors who came out to help in our big March work party with nearly thirty Cal student volunteers from the Berkeley Project. It was a great success, and we planted over two dozen new plants (especially on the northern end of the park) in addition to mulching and removing graffiti in the larger neighborhood. In addition to appreciation to all the neighborhood and student volunteers, I want to extend a big thank-you to Whole Foods Market and to Mokka Cafˇ for once again keeping our volunteers well fueled!


Two of the other big priorities of Halcyon Neighborhood Association, besides community building and taking care of Halcyon Commons and other green features in our neighborhood, are disaster preparedness and crime watch, and each one has one big event associated with it in addition to our ongoing efforts all year long. For crime watch, itÕs National Night Out Against Crime (a nationwide event that always takes place on the first Tuesday evening in August). For disaster preparedness, this is the month, and once again Halcyon Neighborhood Association is participating in the citywide disaster preparedness drill, which gives us as a neighborhood a great opportunity to move our neighborhood readiness a step forward. But it can only happen with YOUR participation. Please, if youÕre only going to do one thing this year related to disaster preparedness, set aside your Saturday morning on April 27 to join us for a fun and informative morning at Halcyon Commons (see item 1). YouÕll be treated to fresh hot coffee courtesy of Mokka cafˇ and tasty treats courtesy of Whole Foods Market, and useful information for getting prepared on both individual and neighborhood levels, as well as receiving a mini disaster preparedness starter kit as an incentive to get you out the door!


Even if you canÕt join us in person on the April 27, you can still help move BerkeleyÕs disaster preparedness forward with just a few minutes of your time (see items 2 and 3). So no excuses! Get ready!


Have a great April, and we hope to see you in the park the morning of Saturday April 27!


—Nancy Carleton, HNA Co-Chair and E-News Editor,


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1. Halcyon Neighborhood & Citywide Earthquake Exercise, April 27, 9-11:30 a.m., Halcyon Commons


EditorÕs note: HNA Disaster Preparedness Coordinator Susan Snyder submitted the following notice about the upcoming drill on April 27 and what you can do to participate.


Citywide Earthquake Exercise with Halcyon Neighborhood Participation

Saturday, April 27, 9-11:30 a.m.

Halcyon Commons (Halcyon at Prince)

* Coffee courtesy of Mokka Cafˇ

* Treats courtesy of Whole Foods Market

* Mini Disaster Prep Starter Kit assembled by our HNA Disaster Prep Team


Prior to the drill (i.e., right now), please take the time to register for the citywide disaster prep exercise (see item 2) and sign up for the BENS (Berkeley Emergency Notification System (see item 3). It only takes a few minutes!


COME TO HALCYON COMMONS to participate in the neighborhood response part of the drill! The Incident Command Center will be set up prior to the 9 a.m. drill start time. We will have a variety of stations set up to represent different parts of our neighborhood response (Incident Command, Radio Communications, Safety Officer, Fire Suppression, First Aid, Pet Station). We need YOU to make our drill a success! (You donÕt need to have any prior experience to participate!)


Please contact Susan at to volunteer at the exercise, to be added to the Halcyon Disaster Prep Yahoo group, or if you have any questions.


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2. Register for the 4/27 Citywide Disaster Prep Exercise!
(You DonÕt Have to Be Physically Present at the Exercise to Participate!)


EditorÕs note: HNA Disaster Preparedness Coordinator Susan Snyder sent the following notice. Please mark your calendars to participate in the neighborhood portion of the exercise on the morning of Saturday, April 27 (see item 1), but whether you can join us in person or not, there are still some simple ways to participate, as Susan points out below! Follow the link, and youÕll find it takes only a minute or two to sign up. No excuses! (Also see item 3 for the BENS sign-up link, which you can do in about 30 seconds!)


Register for the Citywide Earthquake Exercise on April 27th!


HNA is registered to participate . . . and now we need you! Please go to for information and then register at can register to participate even if you wonÕt be able to join the neighborhood part of the drill on the morning of April 27th! (At-home participation can be checking your earthquake supplies, texting your out-of-state contact, or listening to radio 1610 to hear the announcement.)


Also, if you are interested in volunteering to help plan or set up our neighborhood exercise (9-11:30 a.m. on Saturday, April 27; see item 1), please contact Susan at


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3. Disaster Prep: Take Thirty Seconds to Help Berkeley Be Better Prepared!


EditorÕs note: Did you know you can help make Berkeley better prepared for a big earthquake or other disaster simply by registering to receive communications from the City of BerkeleyÕs Emergency Notification System (BENS) in the event of a disaster? Again, no excuses, please take thirty seconds and sign up today!


Background information:


The 30-second sign-up process:


And another 30-second action: Like the Berkeley CERT page on Facebook!


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4. Crime-Watch Updates


EditorÕs note: Our HNA Facebook group at!/group.php?gid=292160762499 often shares breaking crime reports in between E-News editions. If youÕre a neighbor who isnÕt yet part of this closed Facebook group, youÕre missing out! Remember, we rely on neighbors to fill in the details of crimes in our neighborhood, so, in addition to being sure to file a Police report, please email to pass the word on to your neighbors, or share it on our Facebook page, so we can all stay aware and vigilant!


HNA Steering Committee member Mikel Delgado submitted the following summary of recent crimes in or near the neighborhood. Thank you, Mikel!


2/22 larceny theft, Telegraph at Ashby

2/24 drug violation, Telegraph at Woolsey

3/3 robbery, Telegraph and Ashby

3/4 robbery, Woolsey and Shattuck

3/7 assault, Telegraph at Ashby

3/8 drug violation, Telegraph at Woolsey

3/8 vehicle break-in, Halcyon and Prince


A Prince Street neighbor reported to our Facebook group:


ŅMy upstairs neighbors heard someone ring their doorbell at 2 AM last night [posted on March 13], and possibly enter our backyard. Anyone else have a similar incident?Ó


Another neighbor responded:


ŅHey guys, I had this happen . . . FYI the next day I saw some young men on those small bikes circling very slowly around cars, looking inside, checking out bikes, and looking up driveways, basically casing the street near Prince and Fulton. I reported this to the police in light of what had happened the night before. They sent a car and he did a sweep, calling me for details about where I'd seen them go.Ó


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5. Whole Foods Market News: Community Meeting, Weds. 4/10/13, 9:15 a.m.


EditorÕs note: News from Whole Foods Market. Note the change in time for the drop-in meeting, and a please join me in extending a warm welcome to the new community relations rep, Lizzie Brimhall. Thank you, Lizzie, for arranging for the generous donation to our Berkeley Project work party in the park and surrounding neighborhood in March!


Drop-In Progress Meeting, Wednesday, April 10, 9:15-9:45 a.m.

(community meetings are typically held on the first or second Wednesday of each month)

Whole Foods Market (check in at Customer Service)


ŅThese meetings are held at the Community Table at the front of the store, and the purpose is to share our plans for ongoing changes in the store, street litter control, and progress on any of the ongoing issues we discuss [with HNA reps and nearby neighbors]. The Store Team Leader is usually present, and anyone is welcome to join us. Of course there will be complimentary coffee, tea, and snacks. Our goal is to follow up immediately on any issues that we hear about, and to hear how the store can be a better neighbor.Ó


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6. Next Issue of Neighborhood Update from the BPD Available for Downloading


EditorÕs note: The Berkeley Police Department has recently started putting out a multipage newsletter full of useful information. The March issue has articles on car burglary, disaster preparedness, wallet thieves, graffiti prevention, burglary prevention strategies for your home and yard, and more. ItÕs available, along with prior issues, at


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7. Bateman Neighborhood Association Files Appeal to Stop a Starbucks at Ashby/Telegraph


EditorÕs note: As reported in the last E-News, a large cafˇ -- apparently a Starbucks, though their name isnÕt on the application -- is being proposed at the corner of Ashby and Telegraph, in the newly constructed building across from Whole Foods. Indeed, an AUP (Administrative Use Permit) was granted by staff for such a use, and has now been officially appealed by our sister neighborhood Association across Telegraph, Bateman Neighborhood Association (see excerpts below). You can also get more information and/or sign a petition at Mokka Cafˇ (Telegraph at Dowling) if you want to support them in their opposition to the permit. In response to the item about this issue that appeared in the March HNA E-News, we realized that HNA itself will not be able to take a position on this issue, given a range of views in the neighborhood (and the fact that our Guiding Principles require us to have near unanimity to take action, not a simple majority or even a supermajority). HNA Co-Chair John Steere and I (Nancy Carleton, the other HNA Co-Chair), will instead be sending a general letter early next week outlining the range of responses weÕve heard back from neighbors (you can email, if you havenÕt yet sent us a comment). However, if YOU have strong feelings, pro or con, either in support of the permit for a large cafˇ or in support of the appeal and in opposition to the permit (see excerpts from the appeal below, as submitted by Bateman Neighborhood Association), we urge you to email your own, personally worded letter to the Zoning Adjustments Board, with copy to City Councilmembers. We support and respect the right of all our neighbors to make their individual views known! Contact information for various City officials can be found at - Contacts. ThereÕs also an article on the issue at


[From: Bateman Neighborhood Association]


Re: Appeal of Administrative Use Permit #13-20000024 for 3001 Telegraph Ave


To the Zoning Officer:


This letter is submitted to appeal the decision of the City of Berkeley to group Administrative Use Permit #13-20000024 for 3001 Telegraph Avenue (Ņthe Subject PropertyÓ) to allow the use of approximately 2,063 sq ft of the ground floor commercial space for a coffee shop. . . .


Grounds of appeal


The grounds of appeal are:


1. The permit was granted in error because the finding that the proposed use is compatible with existing commercial and residential uses is not supported by substantial evidence in the record. The proposed use is the same as numerous existing local businesses and threatens the continued commercial viability of those existing businesses. The proposed use generates unquantified and unmitigated negative traffic congestion and safety impacts, and unquantified and unmitigated parking impacts on the surrounding residential areas. . . .


5. The permit was granted in error because the Zoning Officer did not comply with Berkeley Municipal Code Section 23E.36.080. Section 23E.36.080 requires a quick serving food establishment to provide one off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of the floor area of the establishment. The proposed use will occupy 2,063 square feet. The AUP record states that seven spaces are required. However, the Zoning Officer applied a requirement of only three off-street parking spaces. The AUP record also states that 38 of the available parking spaces in the enclosed garage are reserved for the residential units. By increasing the allocation of off-street parking to the residential units, Applicant appears to be operating the project out of compliance with Use Permit #08-10000092 because it allows only 34 of those garage spaces to be used for the residential units. . . .


6. The permit was granted in error because the finding that the off street parking requirement can be waived because the proposed use Ņwould likely increaser pedestrian activityÓ is not supported by substantial evidence in the record.


7. The permit was granted in error because the finding that the off-street parking required can be waived because the proposed use Ņwould primarily serve residents and workers in the neighborhood who are most likely to walk to the establishment rather than driveÓ is not supported by substantial evidence in the record. This use would be located on two major commute corridors for automobile traffic moving through Berkeley and would likely exacerbate traffic congestion and reduce traffic safety in the area as drivers stop for food and/or drinks on their way to work. . . .


EditorÕs note: IÕm unable to include the entire five-page appeal letter here, but if youÕre interested in reading it, email and I can forward the pdf that Bateman Neighborhood Association sent to HNA.


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8. Tool Library Reopening!


EditorÕs note: Received from the Berkeley Public Library.


Berkeley Public Library South and Tool Libraries Grand Reopening


The Berkeley Public Library will celebrate the reopening of the newly constructed and expanded South Branch Library on Saturday, May 11, 2013. Located at 1901 Russell Street at MLK Jr Way, the new branch library replaces the previous facility. The new library is designed by the architectural design firm of Field Paoli Architects, San Francisco; the General Contractor is Gonsalves & Stronck Construction Company of San Carlos; and the public art installations are by Gina Dominguez (Snapshot Mosaics), well-respected Oakland mosaics artist.


The grand reopening celebration will begin at 12:30 P.M. Library services will begin immediately following the ceremonial program and the branch will remain open until 5 p.m.  A ribbon cutting ceremony is planned with local and state officials, music and refreshments will be provided. Everyone is invited.

To facilitate the move back into the new space, the Tool Lending Library, temporarily located at 2525 8th Street, at Dwight Way will CLOSE at 5:30 P.M., Saturday, April 20.


The library will suspend Branch Van services to South Berkeley at 1730 Oregon Street effective the end of the day, Saturday April 27, 2013.  Library Branch Van services to West Berkeley will continue while the West Branch Library is under construction.


Library patrons are asked to please return checked out tools to the Tool Lending library prior to the closing date. All other Library materials may be returned to any of the other three open library locations. The New South Branch / Tool Lending Library is a warm and welcoming building with improved lighting, ventilation, and thermal comfort. It creates a civic presence for pedestrians and passers-by; inside it offers visitors a spacious and organized layout. The Library is pleased to offer services to the community in the new branch with distinct spaces throughout the building for adults, teens, and childrenÕs services and a true separation of quiet and louder areas. Features of the design include increased square footage, an increase in size from 5,400 SF to 8,700 SF, a flexibly planned program space which will be available throughout the day for multiple purposes and a small group study room. The new space incorporates a variety of seating, including lounge chairs, space for laptop users and increased public computer access.


The much loved, unique Tool Lending Library returns to a larger space with adequate storage for their large collection of tools and designated staff space for maintenance and repair of the collection. In keeping with BerkeleyÕs commitment to a green future, the new library design will reduce energy and water consumption. The design team is working to attain LEED Gold Certification, adding photovoltaics to off-set dependence on the energy grid and taking advantage of natural lighting and ventilation opportunities throughout. One such feature is a central, day-lit browsing area with popular materials, CDs and DVDs, holds, and self-check stations. The new Library will serve the community well into the future!


The branch construction was funded by Measure FF, the branch Library improvement program, a $26 million bond measure passed overwhelmingly by the voters in November 2008. Project costs for the South Branch totaled $6.5 million. A separate fundraising campaign by the Berkeley Public Library Foundation is underway to provide new furnishings, fixtures and equipment -- expenses not covered by the bond. For more information on how to support the campaign, please contact Kirsten Cowan at or (510) 981-6115. For more information about the South / TLL Branch LibraryÕs opening celebration, please call (510) 981-6195 or visit


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9. Link to an Article on Telegraph Avenue Vacancies by a Le Conte Neighbor


EditorÕs note: Le Conte neighbor Steve Finacom wrote an interesting article on vacancies (or lack thereof) on Telegraph Avenue. Worth a read!

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10. Bird-Feeding Notes from a Neighbor


EditorÕs note: Neighbor Sharon Dulava shared these comments with us on the HNA Facebook group page, for the benefit of our feathered friends.


ŅHello neighbors with bird feeders! Feeders are a great way to see your local wildlife up close, but they can also be one the best tools to spread disease. I have seen many birds in the neighborhood the past few months with avian conjunctivitis. This primarily affects finches and is easily spread through bird feeders. Our local wildlife rehabilitation centers have also been seeing a recent increase in diseases that are commonly spread through feeders. To help prevent more spread, please be sure to take your feeder down every week and give it a good scrub-down with soap and hot water.Ó


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