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

Good morning, RVA: Fix the streets, BMX family, and Lakeside improvements

Good morning, RVA! It's 68 °F, and today we’ve got clouds and temperatures in the 80s. I think we’ll squeak by without any rain, though.

Water cooler

Richmond Police are reporting a murder that occurred this past Tuesday on the 2000 block of Stuart Avenue. Officers arrived for a welfare check, and found Charles P. Smith IV, 48, dead. Police have not yet released the cause of death.

I’m pretty tired of “education campaigns” from cities, counties, and police departments that blame and shame pedestrians as a way to reduce traffic violence. VCU has done this, I’ve seen the City-adjacent Vision Zero Twitter account do this, but this new video from Henrico really takes the cake. Not only does it admonish people for walking while distracted (which is not a thing) and tell folks to wear appropriate clothing (which is none of their business), all the clips of pedestrians in this video are people walking in a ditch because Henrico just doesn’t have enough sidewalks! It blows my mind that during the production of this video no one was like “Oh, hey, maybe we shouldn’t use this footage of people walking in a bunch of ditches?” Is this what the County wants the default walking experience to look like? Sure feels like it. This kind of lowest-hanging-fruit campaign is infuriating when not paired with actual infrastructure changes—like building sidewalks—that help keep people safe.

Mark Bowes at the Richmond Times-Dispatch has the details surrounding this past weekend’s 10 drug overdoses in Chesterfield County 💸. This is awful. Two interesting details: 1) the map of where the overdoses occurred, and 2) Bowes says Richmond had 91 deaths due to opioids last year while Chesterfield saw 75.

NBC12’s Kelly Avellino briefly talked to new RRHA head Damon Duncan about their progress in building new places for folks from Richmond’s six large public housing neighborhoods to live. I’m extremely uneducated about what the long term plan is for our public housing and am looking to learn more!

Well, I love this piece in RVA Mag by Benjamin West about Richmond’s local BMX scene. It’s got it all—old punk dudes, dad injuries, cool jerseys, kids being rad. I’m not sure I thought of BMX as a family sport, but totally do now, and I kind of want to try it out?

Oh dang, the folks behind La Milpa have started a farmers market (every Saturday from 7:00 AM-12:00 PM through November 2nd)! Now you’ve got a new reason, other than the carnitas, to make your way out there.

Lakeside continues to blow up! J. Elias O’Neal at Richmond BizSense says that a new restaurant by the folks that run Julep’s will open at 6223 Lakeside Avenue sometime next year. This is boring and expected, but: If we’re gonna add a bunch of new stuff to Lakeside Ave, we need to add a bunch of new ways to get over there. Step 0: Improve the pedestrian environment—crossing the highway off-ramp on foot is terrifying. Step 1: Take a travel lane away and add a protected bike lane all the way up to Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. Step 2: Get the City and Henrico County to work together to extend bus service up that way. Step 3: ...Profit?

This morning's longread

How a tiny endangered species put a man in prison

I didn’t know anything about the Devil’s Hole pupfish before reading this article—I was, however, very familiar with how dumb and terrible people can be.

The tiny fish has become an icon for those looking to protect endangered species and their habitat, but it’s a target of deep resentment in Nevada, and particularly in Nye County, where, according to critics, the interests of an obscure fish are pitted against the livelihood of local agricultural families. The issue has tested water rights in this arid part of the American West and raised questions about how far officials should go to save a handful of imperiled fish. The drunken invasion of its habitat in 2016 was not unprecedented: Dozens of trespasses have been documented throughout the decades. But such crimes are difficult to investigate and rarely prosecuted. This time, however, would be different.

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Good morning, RVA: RPS rezoning, golf course dreams, and monastery cheese

Good morning, RVA: Bike to School Day, apology about the apology, and Uber/Lyft strike