Fireworks could be returning to San Ramon

Team recommends Old Ranch Park to set off, but not watch fireworks

Are fireworks coming back to San Ramon? It's too soon to say for sure, but the city is taking the first steps toward restoring the show.

The shows were canceled two years ago after concerns about costs and safety. Scott Holder, police chief at the time, estimated it would cost $318,000 to do the show right, with adequate staffing that would include everything from improved traffic control to better trash collection.

Holder told the City Council that the Independence Day celebration in 2011 left the city in gridlock from 8-11 p.m., with emergency vehicles unable to respond to calls. Central Park, the previous location of the show, was left in a sea of debris, with trash cans overflowing and litter everywhere.

Since the problems in 2011, the city has held a scaled-down July 4 event dubbed Celebrate America that featured a cover band and San Ramon's all-volunteer symphonic band performing patriotic music. The event has drawn about 2,000 people, a far cry from the 30,000 that turned out for the last fireworks show.

Now, after two years and multiple public input sessions, the San Ramon Parks & Community Services Commission will hold two public meetings on potential new locations for the fireworks to be set off. Both meetings will be held at Dougherty Station Community Center, 17011 Bollinger Canyon Road, with an evening meeting set for 7 p.m. Jan. 15 and a daytime meeting at 10 a.m. Feb. 1.

A team of police, San Ramon Valley firefighters and workers from the city's Engineering Services, Public Services, Parks and Community Services was formed to research alternate locations, with help from a pyrotechnics expert.

The team was asked to evaluate potential new sites, looking at safety, public access, traffic control and road closures, emergency access and crowd control. It was also asked to consider property rights and regulatory restrictions, how well fireworks could be seen from different locations, and the maximum height, shell sizes and drop areas.

A current proposal is to use Old Ranch Park as a place to shoot off the fireworks, but not as a place to watch them. The park would be secured, allowing access only to the pyrotechnicians, police and firefighters.

The team concluded that would be the place where the aerial displays could be best seen from both sides of the city; it also noted that Old Ranch Road can be closed from the east and west during the fireworks, which would minimize its impact on traffic.

City officials could not be reached for comment, but several have said in the past that they'd favor bringing back the shows if they could be done safely and inexpensively.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Jim
a resident of San Ramon
on Jan 9, 2014 at 1:03 pm

San Ramon makes more money now then it did when they first started the Fireworks show, it should have never been cancelled in the first place. They keep putting up new developments, cramming in as many people as possible and taking their tax dollars but claim the cost is prohibitive? They seriously couldn't figure out the safety issue? Mismanagement and poor planning all over the place. More than happy to take your money though. I don't see putting up these new developments after the past 10 + years as a benefit to any past/current residents. All it has done is increase traffic, devalue our homes and taken away traditions like this one.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Jim
a resident of San Ramon
on Jan 9, 2014 at 2:20 pm

If streets turning into parking lots and devalued home prices is something we should be proud of then we are all done for. If you enjoy that you should look into Southern California instead of trying to copy it up here "Cholo". I think you should grow up and look around you.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cletus
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 10, 2014 at 8:57 am

It's way past time for the Alameda County Fair to bring back fireworks on the 4th. Taking fireworks away because they weren't properly maintaining security was a wrong-headed approach.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jan 11, 2014 at 3:24 pm

Fireworks harm thousands of American citizens annually:

Web Link

It's very important to understand that fireworks are dangerous to citizens.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jan 11, 2014 at 6:39 pm

I wouldn't be surprised to learn that folks that encourage the return of fireworks in San Ramon are the very ones who stand to profit, by selling illegal fireworks, to children and teens. It's one way to make money by controlling the market in sell both legal and illegal fireworks that harm others for MONEY!

B U S T E D!

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Gracie Jay
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 14, 2014 at 9:01 am

It's interesting how posts just disappear from this site. I say a comment here about Alameda County Fair fireworks, and it just disappeared. There was nothing inappropriate in that comment. Do these things get zapped by the PW because they might not agree we the PW's outlook on things, or are they getting zapped by hackers?

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Gracie Jay
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 14, 2014 at 9:03 am

Who is Cholo? Is he just having a running dialog with himself, or does he have issues?

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Daveg
a resident of Birdland
on Jan 14, 2014 at 9:12 am

Daveg is a registered user.

Gracie Jay, you are correct on both comments regarding Cholo

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jan 14, 2014 at 4:15 pm

I wonder if silly willy "Jim" plans to sell legal and illegal fireworks? As I recall, he admitted to having done that in the past.

hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm...? just axing...tee hee

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