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Process begins to rename Fresno streets to 'Cesar Chavez Boulevard,' despite public outcry


Read the transcript for this report below.

ELIZABETH ARAKELIAN, HOST: Despite opposition, the City of Fresno is moving forward with renaming Kings Canyon Road and Ventura and California streets all to one name: "Cesar Chavez Boulevard." KVPR’s Soreath Hok reports.

SOREATH HOK: The move has garnered criticism. Some believe the renaming erases the African-American history of southwest Fresno. The councilmembers behind the idea say the change is an attempt to honor farm workers who have also lived in the same area. Cesar Chavez is a farmworker rights icon. Councilmember Miguel Arias says the resolution makes good on a promise initiated in 1993.

MIGUEL ARIAS: Before you is an item that was approved nearly 30 years ago, was then vetoed by then-mayor Patterson, and the veto was not overwritten. The community, specifically the Latino community, have been waiting 29 years and nine months for this historical wrong to be corrected.

HOK: The resolution passed 6 to 1 and will come back for a second vote as a city ordinance. The Fresno County Board of Supervisors must also approve the name change. The city has already approved one million dollars to pay for the name change. For KVPR News, I’m Soreath Hok.

Soreath Hok is a multimedia journalist with experience in radio, television and digital production. She is a 2022 National Edward R. Murrow Award winner. At KVPR she covers local government, politics and other local news.