The view from Meadowview

A sampling of some Sacramentans’ hopes for their city

Photo By Larry Dalton

As part of the General Plan updating process, city contractors have been surveying residents around Sacramento to learn their preferences for the future. SN&R thought that was a great idea. We went into the Meadowview area, far from City Hall, and casually queried a few people ourselves. We asked them: If you had extra time and money to donate to city improvements, what would be your first priorities? Would you like to see the city build more subdivisions or more condo towers? Would you prefer the city widen roads for more cars or concentrate on expanding light-rail and bus service? How is the city getting better? Worse? Do you think Sacramento’s a great city?

In conversations with a dozen randomly picked people in front of the Home Depot and within the McDonald’s on Meadowview near I-5, we learned that Sacramentans are fond of their home and hopeful about the future—as long as the future includes the Kings.

If you’d like to share with SN&R what you like about the city, what you don’t like, and your wish list of city priorities for 2007, write to <script type="text/javascript" language="javascript"> </script>.

Here are some excerpts:

Marendra Prasab has lived in Sacramento for three years.

In what ways has the city improved in the last 12 months?

Oh, they have done a lot of things. The lights they have placed on the light posts and everything, the police.

Has anything gotten worse over the last 12 months?


Everything’s getting better?


Do you think we should fund more light rail and buses or should we enlarge the streets for cars?

Both are OK.

Should we be building more single-family homes or more condos?

More condos.

Photo By Larry Dalton

Arnold Yee has lived in the Sacramento area for 67 years.

What neighborhood do you live in?

I live in Elk Grove now.

If you could live anywhere in Sacramento, where would you live?

Well, I was living in Land Park. So that was nice.

Is it more important for us to remain the city of trees or is it more important for us to grow up into a big city?

Well, I think we’re sort of narrow-minded as far as growing. I think the City Council thinks small. … They should rejuvenate. They should put in a river walk or something.

Should we expand light-rail and bus service or build more roads for cars?

That’s hard to say. You have rapid transit but it seems like nobody uses it that much. I don’t know if it was a waste of money, or … I mean, you spent a lot of money on it but if nobody uses it, what good is it?

Have you ever used it?

No. Have you?

Yeah, a few times. Is there an icon for Sacramento?

The Kings.

Photo By Larry Dalton

Karen Herron has lived in Sacramento for 15 years.

If you had a certain amount of time and money to volunteer, what would you give it to?

Elder care.

What would be your second priority?

Children. After-school programs and things that will help them gear themselves toward college.

What do you think the city’s top priorities should be?

The same as my priorities.

Should Sacramento concentrate on being the city of trees or should it try to grow up into a bigger city?

I like the city of trees, but I would like to see us develop a little bit more, make it a little bit more cosmopolitan, more high rises, and bring some more plays here and entertainment. I’d like to see that.

Should we build more houses for single families or should we be going up and building condo towers?

Probably condo towers. I think we have enough houses.

Photo By Larry Dalton

Lenora Coats has lived in Sacramento for 39 years.

Is the city getting better or getting worse?

I think it’s getting worse. Crime, there’s too many buildings. It’s getting too populated. Freeways, traffic, tons of stuff.

What should the city do to make it better?

Widen the freeways and make more car pool lanes. [Create] different routes, you know what I mean? There are too many people going the same way. … I don’t think many people do light rail. I’ve never in my life ridden a bus or light rail. I wouldn’t know how to do it.

What should the city build in the rail yards?

A new arena. I’m a total Kings fan.

If you had a little bit of time and money to donate to improving the city, what would be your first priority?

Probably to help homelessness, because there are a lot of homeless people.

Second priority?

Schools, for the kids.

Photo By Larry Dalton

Karl Burgham has lived in Sacramento for 13 years.

Is Sacramento a great city?


What makes it a great city?

The diversity.

What should the city’s priorities be for 2007?

I guess roads, budget, basic functioning of the city.

To put in new roads or to resurface and take care of the ones we have?

Resurface and take care of the ones we have. I know the light rail downtown helped out. I work in that area. I’m an engineer for the county.

Should we be building more single family homes or more condo towers, higher density?

If we’re going to grow, then condo towers, higher density. With the housing market the way it is and housing prices, not a lot of people can afford 300, 400,000 dollar homes. A little more affordable housing would be nice.

If you had a certain amount of free time and money to donate to city improvement, what would be your first priority?

Mostly the homeless downtown, because I see a lot of that.

What would be your second?

I guess just renovation of old neighborhoods. Like over here [points to surrounding neighborhood]. There are nice houses in there. They’re old houses and the neighborhood’s just gone bad. And people aren’t keeping up the houses or it’s repo or something like that. And if you go to the other side of I-5, and it’s like the other side of the tracks type deal. The houses over there are mansions. So it’d be nice to renovate old neighborhoods.

Photo By Larry Dalton

Hinekene Keomany has lived in Sacramento for 8 years.

What needs to change in your neighborhood?

I guess we’re having problems with the flood and the rain. Maybe if the city works hard to cut down a lot of the trees before the winter time. And maybe clean up the sewers.

Is that an issue down here?

It is an issue. Yes.

Would you rather concentrate on being the city of trees or a great big internationally famous city?

A city with trees. It’s going to save a lot of electricity during the summer time. It gets hot up here. We do need the shade. But they do need to maintain it, especially during the winter time. Like I said, it clogs up the sewers and we get a lot of flooding. Some cars will die out if they hit the water.

Should we fund transit, light rail and buses or build more roads for cars?

We should build more roads for cars.

Should we build more homes in subdivisions or big condo towers?

In subdivisions. Everyone wants to own their own house.

Alex Lopez has lived in the South Sacramento area all his life.

I’m asking people if Sacramento’s a great city.


What makes it a great city?

I don’t know. Maybe I’ve never been nowhere else.

Have you lived here all your life?


In the Meadowview area?

In South Sacramento more. Fruitridge.

What needs to change in your neighborhood?

I don’t know. My neighborhood’s pretty good.

What do you think the city should make its priority for the new year?

A new arena.

Should the city build more single family homes or more condo towers?