Bridge Lighting Policy
At the December 4th city council meeting I requested city council to revisit resolution 68-2023 and abort the bridge lighting project, returning it to its natural state for the following reasons. (‘Healdsburg Chooses the Color of Peace,‘ Oct. 26)
Lighting the bridge was a temporary art project hijacked by a war in Ukraine that not all residents supported.
Resolution 68-2023 states, “…the system is temporary not designed to remain on the bridge and must be installed and removed for each illumination period.” However the equipment remains on the bridge continuously.
And “The Bridge is intended to serve as a forum for expression by the city and not the public.” We don’t appreciate the council’s use of our bridge as a forum for expression for political, religious or commercial reasons.
And “Approval of this policy is not a project and therefore exempt from provisions of the CA environmental quality act and will not have direct or indirect impact on the environment.” On the contrary, lighting the bridge is a project and referring to the “approval of the policy not being a project” is misleading.
In fact, light pollution destroys peacefulness and pristine darkness, poses a threat to nocturnal wildlife, and impacts plant and animal physiology. The illumination of the bridge increases the city’s carbon footprint and with the current “climate crisis” is contrary to the city’s own reach code for zero emissions.
The city’s notable occasions are Valentine’s Day, Pride Month, Christmas and Hanukkah. What about the Healdsburg Hounds Homecoming Week, FFA Fair week, Cinco de Mayo, Black History Month or others?
For these reasons and more, we request the city council to revisit Resolution 68-2023 and abort the bridge lighting project and return the bridge to its natural state instead of using our bridge for their political, religious or commercial expression.
Hotel Project Passes
The hotel deal revealed who is in charge. (‘Planning Commission Approves New Downtown Hotel,’ Dec. 4.)
Healdsburg residents, my neighbors, the people I meet out on streets, are less engaged and have lost trust in our local government. Why should they show up to city council or planning meetings when our town hall is filled with money-making interests that consistently advocate for more ultra-luxury tourist-focused business?
I am shocked by the vote to approve H4. Notice who voted against the approval. We watch as investors turn our town into a brand.
Mansell was mayor in 2018, when the city assessed a hotel ordinance to limit downtown hotel size to 5 rooms.