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Who wants to rename their Street "King Blvd".

Original post made by Not a Fan, Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jan 17, 2007

I wonder who will pay for Oregon or anywhere else to be renamed King Blvd. in of MLK. I don't have anything against the idea, just wondering if we in Palo Alto can justify spending the money on renaming one of our streets. The cost of renaming Oregon would be in the number of signs that have to be changed, from highway to local, as well as the costs to homeowners and businesses in changing their addresses. The cost of renaming a residential street would be mainly on the homeowners in changing their addresses to all their business and private contacts. I certainly do not want the hassle, so please do not do mine.

If the City wants to name a Park or Street, or whatever, fine. But please make it something new that has no name as yet. Don't change something that we all know and use everyday and will probably still remain in folklore for ever. Consider Candlestick (Monster Park), PacBell (AT&T) and the Shark Tank (or the Arena, or HP Pavilion or whatever it is called nowadays).

Comments (21)

Posted by Resident
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jan 17, 2007 at 11:08 am

You forgot the GPS systems ( which have the downloaded maps .. hence a cost to the owner of the system to get an uploaded maps ); the online map sites; the paper maps ..

Hope there is a process to changing the name of a major street and is not based on the whim and fancy of the city council.

Just curious - a question to the long term Palo Alto residents - has the city changed the names of a street in the past ?

Posted by SilverBullet
a resident of Midtown
on Jan 17, 2007 at 4:59 pm

I think its frankly a dumb idea. I fail to see how naming a street after someone does anything to trigger a discussion of civil rights. They have a federal holiday to honor the man, and I imagine that most people just treat it as simply a day off from school or work, which is sad, of course, but probably true.
They say actions speak louder than words - how about a scholarship fund? a tutoring or mentoring program?
Martin Luther King was a great man and a great leader. He has continued to inspire people decades after his tragic death. However, there have been many other great leaders - what about naming a street after Ghandi? Ghandi helped to inspire King. I think Ghandi could teach all of us some lessons of tolerance and humility now.

Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Jan 17, 2007 at 6:49 pm

Rename the plaza at City Hall Martyr's plaza or Memorial Plaza and commemorate all our martyrs and heros that way.

Posted by claire
a resident of another community
on Jan 18, 2007 at 12:41 pm

Martin Luther King, Jr. was a great man. Streets named in his honor should be in Selma, Alabama or Georgia. Somewhere in the Southern states where is struggle began.
It is utterly silly to have a street in Palo Alto, California named after him.

Posted by Tim
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jan 18, 2007 at 12:49 pm

Doesn't the city council have better things to worry about? Don't we have a budget crisis? Or maybe we should do a feasibility study about re-naming the street in order to waste some more money. I agree that something new could be named after him, but don't change the name of a street that is widely known. Too much trouble to go through. The observed holiday is enough.

Posted by Kyu
a resident of Midtown
on Jan 18, 2007 at 12:50 pm

I agree, there is so much history in Oregon Expressway and the Oregon Avenues already. There is no need to delete that in favor of a great man who never even knew of our city of Palo Alto. The thought of honoring MLK is great, the thought of renaming a street after him is ludacris.

Posted by Jack
a resident of Midtown
on Jan 18, 2007 at 2:21 pm

Martin Luther King and Ronald Reagan were both great men, although Reagan liberated many more people than did King. Perhaps we could rename Oregon for King and University for Reagan.

Yes, it will cause a million dollars or so, but it would be worthwhile. The money can come from sidewalks budget.

Posted by keep the dream going
a resident of another community
on Jan 18, 2007 at 2:31 pm

There already is a Kings lane in Palo Alto. Just add an apostrophe and you're good to go.

Also, perhaps rename some road where poor planning was involved Ludacris after the pop personality, in oner of the poor spelling so prevalent in this highly educated town. Include asterisks on both side of the name to make it stand out, in case noone sees it otherwise.

Posted by What?
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jan 18, 2007 at 2:53 pm

I am not in favor of tearing down history with local meaning to make a political statement. The naming of our city should honor our local history. Honor Martin Luther King. Leave our local historical landmarks, roads, buildings, parks, etc. out of it. We should honor the very significant history of Palo Alto.

What a dumb idea - is this all our city council has to do? I was wondering if they could honor our residents health and well being by coming up with better traffic solutions for the neighborhood streets around our schools, or honor our economic needs by finally coming up with a solution for Alma Plaza.

City Council - you do realize that for basic everyday shopping our tax dollars leave the city every day, and go to Mt View?

Or maybe you can honor our kids, and our property values and work in partnership with PAUSD to find a solution to the overcrowding in the schools?

Come on, get on the ball. The city's bursting at the seams, and you're sitting around thinking up zero value ways to make things more complicated. Ugh.

Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Jan 18, 2007 at 6:16 pm

With all the good The Reverend King did, he helped sell more people into slavery than Lincoln freed.

Posted by Einstein
a resident of another community
on Jan 18, 2007 at 9:53 pm

Why not take a small residential street in Palo Alto starting with a K - for example, Kellogg Street is a good candidate - and change it to Martin Luther King Boulevard? This will reduce the cost of a changing street signs since one letter can be saved.

Posted by curious
a resident of Downtown North
on Jan 18, 2007 at 10:34 pm

There is a Martin Ave in Crescent Park, so why not change it to Martin Luther King Ave? That way the residents on that street can still use those return address labels by writing in the extra words.

Another alternative is to name one of the streets that are going in at all the new condo developments in South Palo Alto...

Someone needs to get the city council to focus on many of the issues that were mentioned in a previous topic: police building, library, backlog of infrastructure maintanence, revenue, growing employee retirement & health costs, etc.

Our next major holiday is President's day (for Washington & Lincoln). Luckily, we already have streets with those names.

Posted by Tim
a resident of College Terrace
on Jan 19, 2007 at 9:05 am

A total waste of time and money. Yes, I agree he was a great man, but if we are going to name a street after somebody, let it be someone who has connection with our city: Hewlett, Packard, Varian, Terman, Jobs. Also, lets do a new street like the new ones at the old Hyatt site. I know I don't want my street re-name, do you?

Posted by Lou
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jan 19, 2007 at 12:53 pm

Since Ms. Cordell and Mr. Drekmeier proposed this street name change, I suggest he push to rename Stelling Dr. where he lives - or Ms. Cordell, a VP at Stanford, push to rename Palm Drive, Galvez, Serra, or Arboretum on campus.

Before renaming a street, any street, please fix IT and all the other disgraceful streets. Despite the Council's initial outraged huffing and puffing over the auditor's street maintenance report, absolutely nothing has been discussed since - not the big indepth study session as promised - or did I miss that? This council needs to keep its eye on the ball. It
frets about greenhouse gases and yet wants to build more housing with more auto trips. Can't have it both ways. This council has to get back to the basics and get its head out of the

Posted by Paul
a resident of Community Center
on Jan 19, 2007 at 1:24 pm

In many large cities where there is a MLK Blvd, Ave., St., etc. there is often a great deal of violence. Just an observation.

Posted by Einstein
a resident of another community
on Jan 19, 2007 at 5:45 pm

I agree that there is bound to be a strong correlation between the name of a street and the crime rate on said public way, no matter the crime rate citywide. A Ghandi Street, for example, would surely be the safest place in town; in contrast, an Al Capone Way no doubt would be the most dangerous. That's because the criminal mind is a highly suggestable one ...

Posted by Capone
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jan 20, 2007 at 5:42 am

Al Capone St. should end up being the safest street. FEAR FACTOR.
Saves money on police force.

Posted by Hocus Focus
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jan 20, 2007 at 5:52 am

I thought we already had streets named after MLK:
1. Martin Ave
2. King Lane
Now lets focus on the real issues.

Posted by James
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Jan 20, 2007 at 7:58 am

Remember what Chris Rock said, "if you find yourself on MLK- don't walk, RUN"!

Posted by Einstein
a resident of another community
on Jan 20, 2007 at 10:22 am

I disagree with Hocus Pocus that because Palo Alto a Martin Avenue and a King Lane thisis sufficient to stand in for a proper Martin Luther King Boulevard. Where is the Luther Street? I know that is may be politically incorrect and constitutionally suspect in 2007 to name any public way after any great Western theologian or any other Judeo-Christian notable, but for the sake of completeness this may have to be done. Courage and vision is needed to take this civic action.

Posted by Refer And Hum
a resident of Midtown
on Jan 20, 2007 at 8:31 pm

Cordell really believes that Palo Altans are fast asleep. She gets shredded at every misstep she takes. When will she realize it.

City council - Please focus on the real issues. If you need help we can help start a referendum on Cordell.

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