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During the Cold War, the U.S. State Department started sending jazz musicians overseas with the tactical aim of using their hot licks to thaw relations with Eastern Bloc countries. Jazz great Dave Brubeck recalls how Louis Armstrong, a.k.a. “Ambassador Satch,” won international hearts and minds with his trumpet. Band member Arvell Shaw saw Armstrong literally disarm Russian guards in East Berlin. Meanwhile, fear of nuclear war with the Soviets infiltrated American popular consciousness resulting in gospel, bluegrass and pop odes to and protests against atomic weapons.

MacKenzie Chairs Regional Transportation Body

Jun 5, 2017
Metropolitan Transportation Commission

For the first time in more than 35 years, the head of the Bay Area’s Metropolitan Transportation Commission is an elected official from Sonoma County:  longtime Rohnert Park city councilman and current mayor Jake MacKenzie.

Shift Sonoma County Aims to Cut Traffic Congestion

Apr 10, 2017

Curing traffic congestion means using fewer vehicles to move a growing number of people. Sonoma County is preparing to test some strategies to do that, as Christian Kallen reports.

The deadline for submitting proposals for the county’s car-sharing pilot program was last Friday. Interviews with the most promising applicants will be held later this month. 

kern.justin/flickr

Take one step into Marin County’s Muir Woods and it’s easy to see why so many visitors trek to the national monument that lies just north of San Francisco. But the popular park has been experiencing overwhelming visitation the past few years. KRCB’s Tiffany Camhi reports a plan to manage traffic and parkgoers is making slow progress.

    

Planning Underway to Improve ‘The Springs’

May 20, 2016
Sonoma County PRMD

Long overlooked by the rest of Sonoma County, the south end of the Valley of the Moon is now charting a revitalized future. But the extensive community input process will eventually have to reconcile their sometimes conflicting desires.

  At the first community planning meeting, held Feb. 29, a lengthy wish list was developed for the future of the Springs area, recounts Sonoma County staff land use planner Yolanda Solano.

Draft SMART Train Schedule to be Tested

May 12, 2016
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

The SMART Train has not yet announced a start date for their commuter rail service between Santa Rosa and San Rafael, but they do know how often the trains will run each day when regular operations do get going.

The proposed SMART schedule grids, for weekdays and weekends, look like this.

Playful Video Promotes Carma Ride-sharing App

Aug 5, 2014

  A low-budget video to promote the Climate Protection Campaign’s new ride-sharing app features some well-known Sonoma County faces. It’s not entirely serious, but the intent behind it is.

The Carma app can be downloaded here. See the full video promoting it below:

Start-up Turns Commuters into Couriers

Jul 18, 2014

  From Craigslist, eBay and Amazon to Lyft, Uber and Air BnB, innovative applications of online communications have been streamlining customer services and upending long-established business models. A new start-up, launched by Cotati-based entrepreneur is now out to do the same for package delivery and courier services. Let’s hear from him.

This video, from the Shipbird website, explains their business model in greater visual detail.

New 101 Ramps at Airport Blvd. Will Open Today

Jul 17, 2014
CalTrans

  Summer is highway construction season just about everywhere, including a series of projects affecting North Bay drivers on Highway 101. One of the most awkward sites—at the interchange leading to the Santa Rosa airport—is about to get a lot easier to navigate.

Settlement in Sebastopol CVS Suit

Jul 2, 2014

  For the past three years, Sebastopol has been embroiled in a heated debate over a proposed new drugstore development near the heart of downtown. The CVS project was approved by the city, then both parties were sued by a new grassroots group, the Committee for Small Town Sebastopol, and there has since been a lot of back and forth, mostly involving lawyers. That has now come to an end.

Marin's Water Shortage Eases

Mar 13, 2014
Marin Municipal Water Distric

The drought has eased a bit for much of Marin County, even as traffic congestion is getting worse. And overall optimism in the business community is increasing. All this and more from the annual Impact Marin conference in San Rafael Thursday morning.

Casino Traffic Impacts Waning

Nov 26, 2013
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  Three weeks ago, when the new Graton Indian casino first opened, traffic in the area was gridlocked for much of the morning.  To find out how that situation stands now, Bruce Robinson checked in with the local Highway Patrol office.

MADD Applauds Stepped-Up Stops

Aug 29, 2013

  Police are promising to be out in force through the Labor Day weekend in California, looking for drunk drivers, and MADD is happy about it.