community

RYSE Commons: building on dreams of Richmond youth

September 2019 marks a new beginning for the RYSE Center. One of Richmond’s most prominent youth organizations, the center recently broke ground on construction for its new, 37,000 square foot building, known as RYSE Commons. RYSE first opened in 2008. Conceived as a sanctuary from urban violence, it is a place where youth can work, seek therapy, hold discussions, learn new skills, and create art in a safe space. Now, 11 years later, RYSE Commons is a product of ideas…

City council tightens vaping regulations over health concerns

Richmond’s City Council unanimously approved a ban on the sale of e-cigarettes, including vapes, that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration hasn’t deemed safe. The measure, passed Tuesday night amid mounting nationwide concern over harm to health, will go into effect in 2020. There have been six vaping-related deaths reported in the United States, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Contra Costa County has seen one suspected case of vaping-related illness, according to Dr. Chris…

From Brown to French, it’s official

RICHMOND, CA – Interim City Manager Steven Falk named Assistant Police Chief Bisa French as the new interim chief of police for Richmond after announcing at Tuesday’s City Council meeting that Police Chief Allwyn Brown stepped down from his position. French is the city’s first black woman to lead the Richmond Police Department. Interim City Manager Falk indicated there will be no active search for a new permanent police chief this year.  “It is not my intention to initiate a…

West County leads the state in pushing for a moratorium on new charter schools

In December, the DeJean Middle School multipurpose room brimmed with onlookers—community leaders, public officials, parents and students—who cheered wildly as Stephanie Hernández-Jarvis and Consuelo Lara took their new seats on the West Contra Costa Unified Board of Education. The two newcomers had arrived ready and confident. The celebration was a pleasant, gratifying end to their campaigns, and they were prepared to make the hard-fought decisions of public office, including one that day: Whether to re-approve the charter of Benito Juarez…

Richmond business hub opens with co-working spaces, pop-up restaurants

The newly-opened Richmond Business Hub stands on the first floor of the Richmond BART parking garage at the corner of 16th Street and Macdonald, across the street from the Rich City Rides bike shop. It was unveiled last month during a ribbon-cutting event attended by city councilmembers, residents and members of the Richmond Main Street Initiative, a nonprofit dedicated to revitalizing the downtown. The 10,000 square-foot hub is a co-working facility: two working space ventures, Co-Biz and Oakstop, are part…