I am a resident of a historic home on 2nd St., part of the Historic Riverfront District of Yuba City. The house is almost 150 yrs. old and, believe it or not, not protected by the city. In fact, there is not one home or building in the entire city on the National Register of Historic places. 

Coupled with this there are currently no citywide incentives to encourage a historic home or building owner to help upkeep and preserve these pieces of local history. For example, the California mills act: by contracting with the city an owner of a historic building could save on property taxes and use that savings for repair and preservation of the structure. This excellent program is in place in many other counties and cities in California.

Unfortunately this area, the business district section of 2nd St. and these historic homes and buildings, are being left to ruin by the city. The central specific plan from almost 30 years ago outlined a path forward for the city to protect and enhance this area for the good of all residents and this was again highlighted and outlined in the city’s general plan. Recommended within the central specific plan and the general plan, was to create access and connection from the newly created town square and fountain and Plumas St. area of the city to the riverfront through the historic district. Joining the two areas to create a downtown. As of now the fountain area is an island unto its own, disconnected from the historic old downtown and riverfront. What a shame, the authors of these plans saw the potential here, but the city continues to ignore it.

Currently huge volumes of traffic go from Garden Highway through the historic part of 2nd St. towards Bridge St. and beyond. A 25-mph zone with regular speeding through these picturesque streets. The general plan aimed to divert this heavy traffic volume towards Bridge St. prior to entering the historic portion of 2nd St. This traffic has a huge detrimental effect on the appeal of the area for business, homeowners and local Yuba city residents alike, who are being robbed of enjoying this area’s history and character.

… The beautiful courthouse lays empty and hall of records completely under-utilized, what amazing art museums or upscale restaurants or bars these could be used as. There are no programs in place to protect these structures and there is a failing by the city here.

There is nothing to stop someone tearing down these homes and beautiful buildings and if the traffic and neglect by the city continues this will surely be the case. Very sad.

This part of Yuba city’s heritage will be lost forever. Now that the new bridge is almost complete the time is now for the city to finally act and protect the history and heritage for future generations.


Matty Cashman,

Yuba City

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