Once upon a time I ran a news site, now I just have opinions on the news. 

Good morning, RVA: Chuck Richardson, two festivals, and the new Public Art Coordinator

Good morning, RVA! It's 67 °F, and today, with heighs in the 80s, will feel like a tiny bit of relief from the sultry heat of the last few of days. There’s a couple chances for rain scattered throughout this morning and this evening. Andrew Freiden says this evening’s storms could be severe, so pay attention!

Water cooler

Michael Paul Williams has a long column about Chuck Richardson 💸 that comes real, real close to a 5th District City Council candidacy announcement. Richardson has lived a full and interesting life, and the story is worth reading, but does that make him the best candidate for the 5th District? His time on Council predates me, so my only exposure to him has been recent combative comments during public meetings and the current lawsuit against Councilmember Agelasto. I want to learn more about his positions (and officially-running candidate Thad Williamson’s positions, too) on things like: a response to the recent gun violence in the 5th, sidewalks & bike lanes & investments in public transit, the Big TIF that comes along with proposed Downtown Arena, and public housing. I want a City Council that does more things and spends less time creating studies, continuing papers, and arguing with the Mayor’s administration. I’m not sure Richardson is what I’m after, but I’m willing to have my mind changed.

This weekend, Replenish Richmond will host its second I Have A Dream Festival, and it’s basically a festival and public meeting combined. I feel seen! Mayor Stoney and Superintendent Kamras will serve as grand marshals for a parade led by No BS Brass Band, while festival attenders are encouraged to learn about a proposed new park (under the MLK bridge!?) and the Dreams4RPS Strategic Plan. Of course, there will be vendors and stuff, too, plus a bike tour of the East End by Bike Walk RVA. This all sounds wonderful, and we should make every public meetings into a festival.

Mel Leonor at the Richmond Times-Dispatch continues to follow the chaotic Republican General Assembly primary in the 97th District 💸. It’s behind the paywall, but just imagine the worst possible situation and you’ll be pretty close. There is some sort of election thing happening this weekend out that way, but Scott Wyatt, who declared victory weeks ago, says thats all a bunch of lies and shenanigans. Chris Peace, the incumbent—and, I should say, a Republican legislator who voted for Medicaid expansion—obviously disagrees. The Medicaid stuff certainly doesn’t help Peace with primary voters in the 97th, so keep that between us, OK?

Style Weekly’s Amanda Dalla Villa Adams has a profile of Susan Glasser, the city’s new public art coordinator. I appreciate her pledge to work to prevent City Council from ever raiding the public arts fund again like they did two years back. I don’t think I heard a single word from members of Council about restoring that money during this past budget season, but maybe I missed it...

Yo! The Greek Festival is up, running, and available to fill the spanakopita shaped hole in your life. You can stop by for lunch today (30 Malvern Avenue) or just set up shop and spend the whole weekend there hanging out, eating various fried things—some of which have been soaked in honey.

Tim Wenzell at Richmond Magazine writes about the Richmond Black Widows, a women’s tackle football team. If you’re fascinated and excited by this, you can catch the final regular season game this coming Saturday, June 1st at Hermitage High School (8301 Hungary Springs Road) for just $15.

This morning's longread

How Cities Can Ensure Fair, Affordable Transit Amid a Glut of Emerging Transportation Technologies

Shared by a reader, this article does the best job of explaining why scooters aren’t just about scooters and why Richmond needs to pick up its pace and boldness when it comes to new mobility options.

Prioritizing equity can ensure that the rise of new mobility services benefits as many people as possible—not just those with enough money to earn the attention and services of well-capitalized technology firms. A vision of mobility equity will push policymakers to expand street and curb access to transit, sidewalks, bicycles, and other such efficient ways of moving large numbers of people. Meanwhile, less street space would go toward parking and driving the privately owned cars and trucks that take up the most room—and that tend to be owned by wealthier households.

If you’d like your longread to show up here, go chip in a couple bucks on the ol’ Patreon.

Good morning, RVA: Special election, parking study, rock and roll chicken sandwich

Good morning, RVA: FOIA intrigue, China, and (finally) a scooter permit