UPDATES: New Court Date July 9th at 9:30am - Riverside, CA Judge Issues Temporary Restraining Order to Developer - Angry Citizens Fight to Save Riverside, CA Historic Chinatown Site

Posted by AC Team

Upcoming Activities from members of http://SAVEOURCHINATOWN.org:

- Tues., May 12 at 5:45 p.m., Revoke the Vote Demonstration; City Council Public Comments session begins at 6:30 p.m.

- Sat., May 16:
- 6th Annual Riverside International Drum, Mask, and Dance Festival, White Park, 12 noon - 7 pm, SOCC table 12 noon - 4 pm

- Old Riverside Foundation Vintage Home Tour event. SOCC will staff a table 10 am - 4 pm at the non-profit area in the Courtyard Marriott on University Avenue (near ORF's Weber House).

- Mon., May 18, 6-8 pm, 1503 Humanities & Social Sciences (HMSS 1503). For Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, SOCC will co-sponsor a film screening and Q&A session with UC Riverside's Asian Pacific Student Programs for When They All Still Lived. Admission: free to all.

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1. The Riverside County Office of Education (RCOE) filed a Writ of Mandamus on April 22, 2009 against the Superior Court of the State of California and the Save Our Chinatown Committee (SOCC) in an attempt to overturn the Preliminary Injunction issued by the Court on March 20, 2009, Judge Sharon Waters presiding. The SOCC trial date has been moved from June 20 to July 9 at 9:30 a.m.

2. Join us for the Revoke the Vote demonstration! The image of George Wong, the last caretaker of Chinatown, will appear once again on May 12 when we will urge Riverside City Council to rescind its approval of the archaeological treatment plan and revoke the permits of the project. The developer violated several city ordinances and conditions of the building permits on Valentines Day weekend. Let the City Council know that these unlawful and destructive practices should not be tolerated in the City of Riverside. We will assemble in front of City Hall, located at the corner of 10th and Main Streets, at 5:45 p.m. We need your participation!

3. Reports on recent activities:

Universalist Unitarian Church of Riverside presentation, sponsored by the UUCR Social Justice Committee, Wed. April 30. Those who attended were given background on the historical importance of the site and updated information on the current preservation effort.

On Friday afternoon May 1st, several SOCC members joined hundreds of people and nearly 30 groups at the Cesar Chavez Community Center to march downtown to Riverside's City Hall for the May Day gathering of "Human Rights for All". SOCC's two new banners were unveiled to accompany the banners of many organizations in solidarity with the rights of workers and immigrants. SOCC members distributed bilingual leaflets and carried trilingual signs proclaming "Human Rights for ALL".

Among the immigrant laborers of the United States from the 19th and 20th centuries, Chinese workers were singled out and disadvantaged by the various Chinese Exclusion Laws. These immigrants included the pioneer Chinese residents of Riverside, most of whom contributed to the economic development of this city, and many of whom contributed to the successful citrus industry that eminated from Riverside and flourished in Southern California.
Later that same evening, SOCC hosted the "Music for Chinatown" fundraiser at Back to the Grind, a local popular coffeehouse in downtown Riverside. The enthusiastic crowd packed the house and was treated to a delightful evening of acoustic world music. The camaraderie, community spirit, and support for Riverside's Chinatown contributed to a fun and positively successful event.

The Riverside Chinatown was a significant topic of their newsletter, News 'n Notes, for March. Their April edition appeared recently with an update on the Riverside Chinatown since the March presentation.

To view the current newsletter online, go to

http://www.chssc.org/NewsNotes/NN_Master.htm .

CHSSC was an early advocate for the site dating back to the 1980s.

3. The SOCC lawsuit is not the only one against the City.

The Old Riverside Foundation, a well-established Riverside organization with 501 (c) (3) status, also cites CEQA in the Fox Plaza project (see below).

From their website, http://www.oldriverside.org/

The Old Riverside Foundation filed a Writ of Mandamus on July 10, 2008 naming the City of Riverside, City Council of Riverside, and the Riverside Redevelopment Agency as defendants in an effort to set aside all land use approvals connected with the Fox Plaza project.

The suit contends that the City failed to follow certain provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act and the City Municipal Code leading to the approval of this project.

To get to their lawsuit status page, go to http://www.oldriverside.org/Lawsuitstatus.htm

In the meantime, focus your thoughts and energies on positive outcomes!

Peace be with us,

Save Our Chinatown Committee

saveourchinatown@gmail.com

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February 26, 2009 - Riverside, California

On Tuesday, February 26 Riverside Superior Court Judge Sharon Waters issued a temporary restraining order against real estate developer Doug Jacobs, halting work on an historic Riverside Chinatown site until a preliminary injunction hearing is held on March 20.

The historic Riverside Chinatown is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and has been declared a City of Riverside Landmark, a Riverside County Landmark, and a California State Point of Historical Interest.

Despite protests from members of the community who lobbied to preserve the site intact for future generations, and all of the official cultural and historical recognition, the Riverside County Board of Education decided to sell the site to real estate developer Doug Jacobs.

Upcoming Activities as reported from members of http://SAVEOURCHINATOWN.org:

- Tues., May 12 at 5:45 p.m., Revoke the Vote Demonstration; City Council Public Comments session begins at 6:30 p.m.

- Sat., May 16:
- 6th Annual Riverside International Drum, Mask, and Dance Festival, White Park, 12 noon - 7 pm, SOCC table 12 noon - 4 pm

- Old Riverside Foundation Vintage Home Tour event. SOCC will staff a table 10 am - 4 pm at the non-profit area in the Courtyard Marriott on University Avenue (near ORF's Weber House).

- Mon., May 18, 6-8 pm, 1503 Humanities & Social Sciences (HMSS 1503). For Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, SOCC will co-sponsor a film screening and Q&A session with UC Riverside's Asian Pacific Student Programs for When They All Still Lived. Admission: free to all.

**************************************************************************************************
BACKGROUND:

1. The Riverside County Office of Education (RCOE) filed a Writ of Mandamus on April 22, 2009 against the Superior Court of the State of California and the Save Our Chinatown Committee (SOCC) in an attempt to overturn the Preliminary Injunction issued by the Court on March 20, 2009, Judge Sharon Waters presiding. The SOCC trial date has been moved from June 20 to July 9 at 9:30 a.m.

2. Join us for the Revoke the Vote demonstration! The image of George Wong, the last caretaker of Chinatown, will appear once again on May 12 when we will urge Riverside City Council to rescind its approval of the archaeological treatment plan and revoke the permits of the project. The developer violated several city ordinances and conditions of the building permits on Valentines Day weekend. Let the City Council know that these unlawful and destructive practices should not be tolerated in the City of Riverside. We will assemble in front of City Hall, located at the corner of 10th and Main Streets, at 5:45 p.m. We need your participation!

3. Reports on recent activities:

Universalist Unitarian Church of Riverside presentation, sponsored by the UUCR Social Justice Committee, Wed. April 30. Those who attended were given background on the historical importance of the site and updated information on the current preservation effort.

On Friday afternoon May 1st, several SOCC members joined hundreds of people and nearly 30 groups at the Cesar Chavez Community Center to march downtown to Riverside's City Hall for the May Day gathering of "Human Rights for All". SOCC's two new banners were unveiled to accompany the banners of many organizations in solidarity with the rights of workers and immigrants. SOCC members distributed bilingual leaflets and carried trilingual signs proclaming "Human Rights for ALL".

Among the immigrant laborers of the United States from the 19th and 20th centuries, Chinese workers were singled out and disadvantaged by the various Chinese Exclusion Laws. These immigrants included the pioneer Chinese residents of Riverside, most of whom contributed to the economic development of this city, and many of whom contributed to the successful citrus industry that eminated from Riverside and flourished in Southern California.
Later that same evening, SOCC hosted the "Music for Chinatown" fundraiser at Back to the Grind, a local popular coffeehouse in downtown Riverside. The enthusiastic crowd packed the house and was treated to a delightful evening of acoustic world music. The camaraderie, community spirit, and support for Riverside's Chinatown contributed to a fun and positively successful event.

The Riverside Chinatown was a significant topic of their newsletter, News 'n Notes, for March. Their April edition appeared recently with an update on the Riverside Chinatown since the March presentation.

To view the current newsletter online, go to

http://www.chssc.org/NewsNotes/NN_Master.htm .

CHSSC was an early advocate for the site dating back to the 1980s.

3. The SOCC lawsuit is not the only one against the City.

The Old Riverside Foundation, a well-established Riverside organization with 501 (c) (3) status, also cites CEQA in the Fox Plaza project (see below).

From their website, http://www.oldriverside.org/

The Old Riverside Foundation filed a Writ of Mandamus on July 10, 2008 naming the City of Riverside, City Council of Riverside, and the Riverside Redevelopment Agency as defendants in an effort to set aside all land use approvals connected with the Fox Plaza project.

The suit contends that the City failed to follow certain provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act and the City Municipal Code leading to the approval of this project.

To get to their lawsuit status page, go to http://www.oldriverside.org/Lawsuitstatus.htm

In the meantime, focus your thoughts and energies on positive outcomes!

Peace be with us,

Save Our Chinatown Committee

saveourchinatown@gmail.com

====================================
February 26, 2009 - Riverside, California

On Tuesday, February 26 Riverside Superior Court Judge Sharon Waters issued a temporary restraining order against real estate developer Doug Jacobs, halting work on an historic Riverside Chinatown site until a preliminary injunction hearing is held on March 20.

The historic Riverside Chinatown is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and has been declared a City of Riverside Landmark, a Riverside County Landmark, and a California State Point of Historical Interest.

Despite protests from members of the community who lobbied to preserve the site intact for future generations, and all of the official cultural and historical recognition, the Riverside County Board of Education decided to sell the site to real estate developer Doug Jacobs.

Riverside, California

Check the SAVE OUR CHINATOWN website SaveOurChinatown.org for news and updates to events planned in May and June. The case has been rescheduled to go to court on July 9 at 9:30am.

Upcoming events as reported by members of SAVE OUR CHINATOWN (re-confirm with the website and its organizers):

- Tues., May 12 at 5:45 p.m., Revoke the Vote Demonstration; City Council Public Comments session begins at 6:30 p.m.

- Sat., May 16:
- 6th Annual Riverside International Drum, Mask, and Dance Festival, White Park, 12 noon - 7 pm, SOCC table 12 noon - 4 pm

- Old Riverside Foundation Vintage Home Tour event. SOCC will staff a table 10 am - 4 pm at the non-profit area in the Courtyard Marriott on University Avenue (near ORF's Weber House).

- Mon., May 18, 6-8 pm, 1503 Humanities & Social Sciences (HMSS 1503). For Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, SOCC will co-sponsor a film screening and Q&A session with UC Riverside's Asian Pacific Student Programs for When They All Still Lived. Admission: free to all.

================

To view the current newsletter online, go to http://www.chssc.org/NewsNotes/NN_Master.htm .

CHSSC was an early advocate for the site dating back to the 1980s.

The SOCC lawsuit is not the only one against the City.

The Old Riverside Foundation, a well-established Riverside organization with 501 (c) (3) status, also cites CEQA in the Fox Plaza project (see below).

From their website, http://www.oldriverside.org/

The Old Riverside Foundation filed a Writ of Mandamus on July 10, 2008 naming the City of Riverside, City Council of Riverside, and the Riverside Redevelopment Agency as defendants in an effort to set aside all land use approvals connected with the Fox Plaza project.

The suit contends that the City failed to follow certain provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act and the City Municipal Code leading to the approval of this project.

Originally set for Friday, March 27, 2009, the revised court date is now confirmed for Friday, April 3, 2009, 8:30 am, Department 6, the old Court House.

To get to their lawsuit status page, go to http://www.oldriverside.org/Lawsuitstatus.htm

SOCC has several activities lined up for April and May before our case goes to court on Monday, June 29, 2009.

In the meantime, focus your thoughts and energies on positive outcomes!

Peace be with us,

Save Our Chinatown Committee

saveourchinatown@gmail.com

=================

February 26, 2009 - Riverside, California -

On Tuesday, February 24, Riverside Superior Court Judge Sharon Waters issued a temporary restraining order against real estate developer Doug Jacobs, halting work on an historic Riverside Chinatown site until a preliminary injunction hearing is held on March 20.

The fight to preserve the historic site has attracted growing local and national attention, with protesters picketing outside the Riverside Council Chambers.

Community members protested the developer's excavation of the site which occurred during the 3-day Valentines Day weekend.

Demonstrators held placards with photos of George Wong, the last resident of Riverside's Chinatown who died in 1974.

Wong was a colorful and outspoken member of the Riverside community who dreamed of preserving and one day resurrecting the Chinatown site.

The Riverside Chinatown site is considered by historians to be the most intact Chinatown of the Southern California citrus belt.

The site is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and has been declared a City of Riverside Landmark, a Riverside County Landmark, and a California State Point of Historical Interest.

Despite protests from members of the community who lobbied to preserve the site intact for future generations, and all of the official cultural and historical recognition, the Riverside County Board of Education decided to sell the site to real estate developer Doug Jacobs.

On October 7, 2008 the Riverside City Council approved the construction of a medical office building.

Judge Sharon Waters restraining order is a result of a lawsuit filed by the activist organization www.SaveOurChinatown.org which witnessed during the Valentine's Day weekend heavy equipment including earthmovers hired by the developer working on the 4.2 acre site day and night, claiming violation of City code and ignoring orders by the Riverside Police to stop.

The Chinese first arrived to the Riverside area in the 1870's bringing with them a 2,000 year knowledge of citrus cultivation from China which was instrumental to the success of the development of California's citrus industry.

The site includes remains of a temple, business district and residential buildings, much of which are located underground due to George Wong's ingenious efforts to preserve the Chinatown intact by inviting construction companies to unload fill on the historic site to help bury the buildings and other archeological artifacts.

Archeologists argue that if the site is stripped it will permanently harm preservation of the historic Chinatown.

Community organizer and member of Save Our Chinatown, Judy Lee provides these additional resources about the historic Riverside Chinatown site:

To view the webcast of the Riverside City Council meeting. Go to http://www.riversideca.gov/council/

On the right under "City Clerk Online Documents" click on Webcasts - Live & Archived Council Meetings .

Select the meeting for February 24 (the evening session), and click on "play video".

Alternatively, try http://65.49. 32.146/ppportal/ agenda/webcast. aspx and click on "play video".

The Public Comment section is #17 (5 on the yellow bar). Warning!: the technology does not always work (or work well).

Excerpts of public comments via 3 separate You Tube videos are posted on the Save Riverside site http://save-riverside.blogspot.com/

For information about the previous mitigated archaeological excavation, consult the authoritative 2-volume set Wong Ho Leun: an American Chinatown (1987) which is the report generated by the Great Basin Foundation, the group that contributed funds toward and conducted the mitigated excavation.

Vol 1=History and Vol 2=Archaeology. There are photos, illustrations, and information there. Wong Ho Leun is George Wong's name; he was the last resident of Riverside's Chinatown.

Noted author Maxine Hong Kingston broke ground for the excavation and actor James Hong served as the Master of Ceremonies at the Riverside Chinatown Ball after the excavation was completed.

There is a 1988 documentary on Riverside's Chinatown that also covers the 1984-1985 limited excavation, When They All Still Lived.

The documentary was uploaded as part of a Summer, 2008 exhibit curated by Reginald Woolery called A Sense of Place at the Sweeney Art Gallery in downtown Riverside.

From http://www.sweeney.ucr.edu/events/asenseofplace/ click on resources under videos are links to When They All Still Lived as well as George Wong: Local Chinese Icon.

Communications may be emailed to the SOCC at saveourchinatown@gmail.com

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