Potential of Downtown Oxnard

Recently stated by others: “…Downtown Oxnard will never be the thriving hub of county commerce again, because 101 is now the main artery and other parts of the county, mostly near major thoroughfares, are now more developed.”

Oxnard Renaissance:

The 101 will not be king forever. Private cars, except for the very wealthy, will be a thing of the past – perhaps in our lifetimes. Train (tube) corridors are the future. Oh, wait – there aren’t any in the West…Oh well. Time will play this out – we could make more dumb near term politically motivated choices, like choosing high-speed rail over just plain good track.

The stronger a local community is the less dependent it will be on a global marketplace. The global market will always be important going forward but local resilient communities are where it’s at. If Oxnard can figure this out, it has a chance – if not, well then, it will continue to be an exploited beleaguered place.

While downtown Oxnard many not recover it’s claim as the center of commerce of Ventura County in the near future – with inspired urban planning and economic development there is the strong possibility for Oxnard to become a unique and vibrant cultural center.

A mix of Latin focused contemporary and traditional arts, an international culinary component, and a small uniquely targeted mfg (3D printing, origami tech, etc) & tech (software development, big-data analysis) sector – in conjunction with the above could just turn downtown Oxnard around in 5 to 10 years.

Some tweaking of Oxnard’s downtown development standards and design guidelines would go a long way to make this happen. Mixed-use, infill, missing-middle, walkable, HOUSING…just a few ideas whose time is overdue for downtown Oxnard. Current extreme and suburban-like parking standards are killing the potential for downtown economic development.

To support the above the community must come forward and take over Oxnard Community College. Ditch the other two and become the center for STEAM education in Ventura County.

All it takes is vision and will…

Can Oxnard, wracked by a toxic brew of haters, find a way forward?