River talk

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

Hey everybody, I’m back from San Antonio. The weirdest thing was touching down at the airport. I felt like I was landing in Mordor. I wanted to get each and every one of you a souvenir at the Alamo, but I spent the money on macro beer and donations to the poor instead.

Speaking of Riverwalks: In years past, people have often said Reno should do with the Truckee what San Antone did with its river. Yeah, San Antonio’s Riverwalk is pretty neat, but I don’t believe we particularly want to emulate it. For one, the main portions of it (stone walkways bordering a canal-looking river) were constructed in the 1920s for flood control. If the boat driver was telling the truth, it cost less than a half million dollars. At any rate, while the Riverwalk is charming, it’s way too commercial, with the same old chain restaurants and nightclubs. You get a block or two off the river, and there are lots of empty storefronts.

In Reno, our thing is neither air conditioning nor river pontooning nor on-the-river shopping. The theory around here, these days, is we live in an outdoor adventureland. Lining the river with buildings so we can’t see the horizon doesn’t have the logic on the Truckee River that it has on the San Antonio River. Think about it—it would be like covering up your backyard view of the real mountains with a 20-foot, Band Aid-colored wall tastefully decorated with mountains. I guess I don’t have to tell you I think that would be unattractive.

Interesting, though, that San Antonio has become more cosmopolitan and sophisticated than Reno in the 20-odd years since I was last there. When I was last there, it was all pointy-toed boots, grime and big hair. It’s cleaner now.

Reason to vote No. 33: You want abortion to remain legal and on demand.