The East Bay’s Premier Magazine of Culture & Commerce

The East Bay’s Premier Magazine of Culture & Commerce

Eve Kushner

Ambassadors of the Avenues

Berkeley’s innovative Host Ambassador Program puts former derelicts back on the street. The catch is, these recently rehabbed men and women—the “Ambassadors”—are paid to reach out to still struggling peers, connecting them with social services and warning them away from offensive public behavior. Downtown merchants, among others, say the program is making a difference.

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AN ELEGANT TRIBUTE

The late Ed Roberts was a primary force behind the Independent Living Movement, making Berkeley a national model for how to serve people with disabilities. The city sets another precedent with the Ed Roberts Campus, an 80,000-square-foot building going up near Ashby BART that brings together seven agencies that serve people with disabilities. The creatively designed building will include innovative features like a central spiral ramp, textured floors and a talking elevator to make it easier for people with any disability to visit.

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Lawfully Wedded Limbo

Same-sex couples in California have experienced a rocky road to marriage equality. You’re legal. You’re not. You’re legal. You’re not . . . Now California’s Proposition 8 could nullify the landmark court decision in May that gave California’s same-sex couples the right to marry. With that vote looming, we tell the love and marriage stories of three East Bay couples who explain how they deal with the political tussle that affects their personal lives.

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PEDAL POWER

If it’s good enough for Paris, why not the Bay? The concept is bike-sharing and like most other progressive ideas, it’s now on the table in San Francisco and may be headed for consideration in the East Bay. If shared bikes could be found on every main street and rented for a nominal fee, perhaps the no-carbon option could ease congestion and make public transit more viable—and maybe more fun.

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Faces of the East Bay