Learning from a neighbor

Our friendly neighbor across the bay–Berkeley–has been more of an innovator than many of us realized. An exhibit at the Berkeley History Center showcases some of Berkeley’s firsts–

  • first bicycle patrols by police officers, started in 1910;
  • first radios in police cars, 1911;
  • first city to use lie detectors for police investigations 1923;
  • first city to ban Styrofoam in 1989;
  • first to use biofuels in city cars in 2003.

Not all of Berkeley’s experiments have worked out well or been accepted either locally or nationally, but it’s good to know that some city governments are will to try new things. That’s the only way the rest of the country will move ahead. And it’s well worth a trip across the Bay to visit this new exhibit.

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