Rooms for sale or rent, and other oddities

Posted on November 2, 2022 by Sonoma Valley Sun

Adding to Sonoma Valley’s stock of Affordable Housing is driving the rush to build out the Sonoma Developmental Center land. Up to 1,000 units are mentioned in the county’s plan, with the majority “designed for the Missing Middle” segment of wage earners. Unfortunately that term is not defined and has no legal weight. So a developer might file that under ‘loose guidelines’ rather than ‘hard rule’, and charge whatever the market will bear… Perhaps the true test of ‘affordability’ will be faced by the  hundreds of people who work at the Big Fancy Resort, which is also part of the master plan. Will they be able to afford to live on campus? Or will we all be on the bus from Fairfield?… Meanwhile, Civil Rights groups including the ACLU filed a lawsuit against the city of Sebastopol for enacting an ordinance that prohibits vehicles “used for human habitation” from parking anywhere within city limits during the day. “This action, aimed at driving the city’s most vulnerable residents out of town, follows a decades-long local and state failure to build affordable housing,” the suit contends. Maybe there’ll be free parking at the SDC.

Speaking of pricey rooms, the Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn has been sold to a company named Brookfield for a cool $265.7 million. That works out to $1,175,554 per room. More if you swipe the bathrobe. 

Not happening: fast food joint and a Trader Joe’s at Broadway and MacArthur. That was the hot but false humor on social media (redundant?). It started as a joke at a meeting but was quickly taken as fact. This freedom of speech thing, wow. All traces of the decrepit Sonoma Truck and Auto are gone, and the area cleared. The owners of MacArthur Place Hotel & Spa acquired that parcel, too, and an expansion is likely. But nothing official yet… The Sonoma branch of Mechanics Bank has moved to a new location — Maxwell Village shopping center. Nice to see the prominent, long-vacant space (which used to be a different bank) back in use. Now, what to do with the exited digs at 10 Maple. Anybody know of a developer who specializes in empty buildings?

It’s not all snark, folks. In Sonoma, the annual Scouting for Food drive has begun with flyers being distributed to thousands of homes by members of Cub Scout Pack 16, Scouts BSA Troops 16 and 222, and Venturing Crew 16.  On Saturday, November 12, give as generously as you can by placing your non-perishable food donation. No flier but still want to donate? Drop off your donations at Fiesta Plaza, at the corner of Highway 12 and Siesta Way, between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. 

Veterans Day is Monday, November 11. Did you know that eight streets on the west side of Sonoma were named in honor of soldiers – local lads all – lost in World War Two? The hometown heroes: Mathew Andrieux, Charles Perkins, Robert Banchero, Raymond Barrachi, Sgt. Lawrence J. Bettencourt, Ross Hayes, Eugene Robinson and Joseph Vigna. Thank you for your service, then and now and forever. 


The 2018 edition

A Day in the Life – Sonoma Valley in Photographs

The Sun’s next issue will be our annual all-photo edition. What’s a typical day in the Valley look like? Picture it! Share your photos of Friday, November 11. Work, play, school, on the town… selfies and phone pics encouraged. Just note the time and place, and email to [email protected]


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