Emeryville Council Considering Renaming Christie Avenue
Christie Avenue and other familiar streets could soon be a thing of the past if council approves a resolution at Tuesday’s upcoming council meeting. The plan calls to slowly phase out all Pioneering and “Rotten City” era street names and replace them with names provided by an exploratory subcommittee.
“Bootlegging, brothels, gambling … these are not things that should be celebrated by a progressive community like ours,” noted 2021 Mayor Dianne Martinez who introduced the measure. “With the support of my colleagues, I am requesting that staff provide a comprehensive list of our current street grid that we can consider renaming after more suitable figures.”
Neighboring cities have been actively working during the pandemic to rename schools and remove any statues or public art that some have deemed “offensive.”
“Why should those cities have all the fun?” joked Councilmember John Bauters who seconded the passing of the resolution. “But in all seriousness, some of the people that these streets were named after were extremely flawed and don’t deserve to be honored. I think it’s just better that we wipe the slate clean and start over.”
“Some think it’s cute or clever to refer us as ‘The Rotten City.’ I don’t,” councilmember Christian Christian Patz noted tightly clenching his teeth. “In fact I wake up every morning with a deep sense of guilt about this. We need to purge this from our history and that starts with our street names.”
“I would like to echo what all of my colleague just said,” added Councilmember Ally Medina.
Scott Donahue was the only councilmember to raise an issue with the resolution but was quickly dismissed by his fellow colleagues. “I think maybe during a global pandemic perhaps we should consider some other higher priority items, besides, I think our history is kinda cool …” “yeah, whatever Scott,” Bauters interrupted.
Bauters noted that he floated the idea on Twitter with the Hashtag #DecolonizeStreets where it got a lot of engagement. “If one of my tweets gets a lot of likes and retweets by my followers, then I think this sends a strong message of community support.”
“I think it’s time we scrutinize who Wallace Christie really was. Did he support prioritizing bike lanes? What was his stance on affordable housing and environmental issues?” Martinez argued. “I think we’re overdue to have these difficult conversations.”
“I’d like to echo what my colleague just said,” added Councilmember Patz. “And I would like to re-echo Councilmember Patz’ echo,” Medina added.
Council also expressed pursuing the renaming of Emery and LaCoste streets. The subcommittee will present a list of alternative names that they plan to discuss amongst themselves on Tuesday.
“ ‘Bauters Way,’ has a nice ring to it!,” Bauters added in a follow up tweet.
BTW, April Fools! This article is intended to be completely satirical. 😉