Tuesday , February 20 2018

Fresno’s Chinatown Faces Growing Pains With Incoming State Projects

Chinatown is one of Fresno’s oldest neighborhoods. From the city’s earliest days as a stop on the Central Pacific Railroad, to the 21st century, Chinatown has been a diverse community made up of immigrants who, in many cases, weren’t welcomed in other parts of Fresno. Locked in by railroad tracks on the east and Highway 99 to the west, the neighborhood is also the subject of renewed attention this year. Two of the state’s highest profile projects, high-speed rail and cap-and-trade, call it ground zero. We spoke to business owners old and new to hear what they have to say about all the activity. Ofelia Hemme owns a restaurant and barber shop on Kern Street, in the heart of Chinatown. She has been working in the neighborhood for over 40 years. Three years ago, she opened her restaurant, Ofelia’s Cocina . They serve Mexican food, their most popular item being their wet burritos. Ofelia describes the entree as “an asada burrito with green sauce and cheese, melted cheese on top.” Next door

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