Student Lookout: Transit Equity Week and the return of Betty Noodles
Happy Friday to each and every one of you,
First, to address the Seahawks in the room, I’m hoping that you were able to muster the strength and courage to face your new semester. Maybe you’re not quite there yet, but you’ll get there soon enough!
As for the Slugs, I hope the days haven’t begun blending together into one vague passage of time. The beginning weeks of a quarter or semester just drag until they don’t, and then all of a sudden weeks pass seemingly between blinks. But hey, though that phenomenon might make you question your existence, at least that means the next break might come sooner than you think, I guess?
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Let’s get started …
Check out these student discounts:
- Students (and teachers) get 10% off at Well Within on Thursdays.
- HoM Korean Kitchen offers 15% off for students.
- Seymour Marine Discovery Center offers free admission to UC Santa Cruz students and 25% off for all student tickets.
DEAL OF THE MONTH: Student ticket price for Santa Cruz Warriors with promo code STUDNT
Buy your tickets online in advance to get this deal and use code “STUDNT” to unlock $10 off your ticket price. To purchase your ticket, visit the Santa Cruz Warriors’ ticket site, choose your game and then enter your promo code in the unlock section (seen in the image below).
➤ Want to share these deals with your friends? Have them sign up for Student Lookout texts with this link.
Betty Noodles ($$)
Some of you older students might remember Betty Noodles from pre-pandemic times. If you liked it, I have some good news for you. After three-plus years of inactivity, the noodle spot is back open off of Cathcart Street in downtown Santa Cruz. According to Lookout’s very own Lily Belli, the restaurant has a new dumpling menu, and the soup portions are even bigger than they used to be. So big, in fact, that she doubts you can finish one in a single sitting. Sounds like a challenge to me. If you succeed, shoot her an email at email@example.com and tell her to step up her game.
Betty Noodles returns to downtown Santa Cruz after closing in 2019, with bowls of soup that are bigger and better than...
Inside Santa Cruz: What the experts say to kick off Transit Equity Week
As the climate emergency worsens and cities get denser, public transit is becoming a big topic on everyone’s mind. Santa Cruz might not be the largest city in the world, but as I’m sure many of you know well, its public transportation system could be much better. As we march closer to Transit Equity Day on Saturday, events around town center on this very issue.
On Monday night, there was a forum of experts at the Resource Center for Nonviolence on Ocean Street, which I shared with y’all last week. District 3 Santa Cruz County Supervisor Justin Cummings, Santa Cruz Metro Chief Executive Director Michael Tree, UCSC sociology professor Miriam Greenberg and others were there to discuss ways to improve our transit system. If you couldn’t make it (no worries), or if you didn’t read Student Lookout last week (wack), I went for you, and can share some of the biggest takeaways here.
Michael Tree has a few big goals for the future of METRO.
Tree has long worked in transportation and aims to make it more accessible and easy to use. Tree also sees the importance of the connection between housing and public transportation. There are 70 affordable units planned for Metro property as part of its major facelift, which officials hope will get more people into buses as a denser population settles near the transit hub. In that same vein, Tree envisions a more environmentally friendly Metro system, with electric and hydrogen-powered buses to cut down on carbon emissions.
Housing near transit lines and corridors incentivizes the use of public transportation.
Cummings said he’s excited that state and local governments are planning housing near public transit lines and facilities, thus incentivizing their usage. Housing affordability is one of the biggest issues in Santa Cruz, and as local government agencies begin planning units, having them connected with public utilities like transportation is “very critical,” said Cummings.
However, developing around transit has implications that can’t be ignored.
Greenberg raised an interesting point that housing near transit won’t incentivize the use of the services if that housing is not affordable. She explained that those earning higher incomes are more likely to drive cars, meaning that market-rate housing built near transit hubs will likely be filled with people using cars.
“Meanwhile, those who will be displaced by that development are more likely lower-income, who are the primary public-transit users. They’ll be pushed further and further out from the city center.”
— Miriam Greenberg
This is just a fraction of Monday’s discussions, so if you’d like to hear more, watch the whole panel here.
Around Town - Events
Did you know that we have an events calendar? BOLO, which stands for Be On the Lookout, is our hub for the best events in the county. See all the listings here.
Here are some events you should check out:
The Beauty of Local Marine Life and Why Current Conservation May Not Be Enough, Friday, 4-7 p.m.
Local photographer Marc Shargel has looked at the changing coastal landscape through his camera lens for about 50 years now. Many of his photos will be on display Friday at the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Exploration Center, just across the street from the wharf. Come out and see the changes he’s observed — and just how drastic they are.
Safe Streets Bike Party, Friday, 5-7 p.m.
It’s Transit Equity Week, and if you have a bike, this might be for you. Bring your bike and head to the Bike Church at 703 Pacific Ave., near Kaiser Permanente Arena, to join a party cycling around the town. It’s a good way to meet fellow cyclists and transit equity advocates. Don’t worry if you don’t have a bike, though — more events related to transit are happening this week.
Transit Equity Day Fair, Saturday, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Staying on topic here, those of you in South County — and the rest of you willing to make the trip — can head to a day fair at the Watsonville City Plaza, where you can connect with transit-oriented organizations like the Community Bike Collective, Friends of the Rail and Trail, Ecology Action and more. There will be free equipment, repairs and plenty of information about trails all around the county.
➤ Want more? If you’re still looking for great things to do, check out Wallace Baine’s Weekender here.
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Lookout Job Board
Are you looking for a job? Check out our job board for Santa Cruz County openings.
➤ More local jobs: Browse more open positions on the Lookout Job Board.
By this time next week, I will officially be in a new life chapter as a full-time Lookouter. Transitions are weird, even when they’re welcome. It’s exciting, and I’ll be forever grateful for the people I’ve met along the way. Who knew a service job could result in such good friendships? Not me, that’s for sure.
Until next week.
If you have recommendations on places we should feature next week, pass them along and we’ll send you a free Lookout T-shirt. Email your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.