For Ken Apperson, the pivotal moment came in fall 2002. He was shuffling through the sporting goods section of Walmart in search of tennis balls when his cell phone rang. The caller, his old chum Scott Knorp, wanted them to quit their lucrative sales jobs and start their own telecom company.
City planners and private developers in Sacramento envision a downtown shopping and entertainment hub pulsing with revenue and pedestrians. The mind’s eye replaces vagrants with decorative park benches and rundown storefronts with shiny new facades. And rather than dispersing at sundown, restaurant patrons and theatergoers would linger into the wee hours.