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City of Berkeley Climate Action and Downtown Revitalization, Measure R (November 2010)

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A City of Berkeley Climate Action and Downtown Revitalization, Measure R ballot proposition was on the November 2, 2010 ballot for voters in the city of Berkeley in Alameda County. Measure R was an advisory vote. It was approved.

Measure R asked voters how they felt about a "Climate Action and Downtown Revitalization" plan supported by Mayor Tom Bates and others. The plan would serve as a guide on downtown land-use decisions and includes these features:[1]

  • A maximum building height of 60 feet except for two residential buildings and one hotel built to a maximum height of 180 feet and two smaller residential or office buildings of 120 feet.[1]
  • New buildings would be required to meet international "green" standards for energy savings and emissions.[1]
  • Builders would be required to offer car sharing, bike parking and transit passes to residents.[1]

Election results

Measure R
Approveda Yes 26,120 64.07%
These final, certified results are from the Alameda County elections office.


The "Berkeley Alliance for Progress – Yes on Measure R" committee was formed to urge a "yes" vote on Measure R. Through early October, the group had raised $32,450. $25,000 of this came from Equity Residential Corporiation, which was owned by Sam Zell, who also owned the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune.[2]

The Sierra Club was supporting Measure R.[3]

Mayor Tom Bates supported Measure R.[1]


Opponents included Jesse Arreguin, a member of the Berkeley City Council, and Patti Dacey, a member of the Planning Commission.[2]

Arrequin said, "I think its very telling about what's really going on. It's not necessarily the environmentalists or the community leaders that are paying for this. Instead, it's the developers who stand to profit from it."[4]

The editorial board of the West County Times was opposed to Measure R, saying, "If the council is serious about keeping the downtown vital, it should concentrate on curing some of the area's chronic ills, like crime, aggressive panhandling and the lack of parking, all of which affect both residents and visitors. City officials are elected to carry out the will of the people who elect them and that could change from year to year despite what is advocated in a voter-approved plan. With no method of enforcement, we wonder why the council placed the item on the ballot at all."[1]

Text of measure

The question on the ballot:

Shall the City of Berkeley adopt policies to revitalize the downtown and help make Berkeley one of the greenest cities in the United States by meeting our climate action goals; concentrating housing, jobs and cultural destinations near transit, shops and amenities; preserving historic resources; enhancing open space; promoting green buildings; and calling for 2 residential buildings and 1 hotel no taller than our existing 180 foot buildings and 2 smaller office buildings up to 120 feet?[5]

See also

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