Economy

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…

Tales of Two Cities: Endings

Welcome back to the Tales of Two Cities podcast!  This episode is all about endings. This week, we tag along with a family in North Richmond that visits several cities just to get groceries. We check in with Warriors fans about how they feel about their team heading (back) to San Francisco. We’ll take a quick trip across the bay to visit the last days at Lucca’s Ravioli in San Francisco. Back bayside, we hear from the owner of one…

Amid health concerns, Richmond officials consider a ban on coal storage and transport

The Richmond City Council will soon consider an ordinance that would restrict the handling of coal and petcoke, a byproduct of oil refining, on port terminals in Richmond. A draft of the ordinance, introduced in December, has been approved by the city attorney, and it is expected to go to the council for a vote, although according to that office, a date has not been set yet.  The ordinance, authored by Councilmember Eduardo Martinez, calls for “the prohibition on the…

Richmond residents welcome new ferry service to San Francisco

A month into the new ferry service between Richmond to San Francisco, residents are thrilled. Already, some 635 commuters a day—more than expected—are using the 35-minute service between Richmond and the Embarcadero. “It’s clean, easy, there are no homeless people and it’s faster than BART,” said Yu Matsu, a Richmond resident who now ­­­takes the ferry daily to get to work in the Financial District. It costs her $6.75 one-way on a Clipper Card, compared to $7.50 on BART. “I’ve…

Richmond teachers struggle to afford housing on “poverty level” salaries

Diane Maddox sold gold jewelry as a side hustle, just to get by during her 33 years of teaching in Richmond. The single mother raised her two daughters in an apartment above a garage. It took the 56-year-old Maddox more than two decades until she could finally afford to purchase a home. She currently teaches transitional kindergarten for English learners at Downer Elementary School. “I’m a single parent in the Bay Area, so then trying to make it on one…

How charter school, real estate and healthcare money helped Wicks outspend Beckles by 4 to 1

The race for California’s 15th Assembly district is one of the most expensive in the state. More than $3.75 million has been spent to support the candidacies of Buffy Wicks and Jovanka Beckles, with spending for Wicks exceeding Beckles by a margin of 4 to 1, a Richmond Confidential analysis of the latest campaign finance reports shows. The reports reveal that nearly 40 percent of Wicks’ support is coming from outside of California. Corporate executives and business interests are heavily…

Rodents, Roaches and Broken Elevators: Why it took nearly a decade for Richmond to fix public housing

By Betty Marquez Rosales and Ravleen Kaur The elevators inside a Richmond public housing building had been broken for about a week before city officials moved to have them fixed — an unusually rapid response for a building plagued by maintenance issues for years, where residents regularly endure long waits to have them repaired. This time, the fix was triggered not just by the usual residential complaints. This time, it took the outrage of residents who believe a death might…