Everything on today's menu is low-fat and high-fiber. Consume as much as you wish:

  • Riders apparently can't wait for the new BART trains to arrive. At least 100 people lined up in the midafternoon heat last week to walk through a model car at the touring Fleet of the Future exhibit as soon as it opened to visitors at the North Berkeley station.

    First impressions: The 20-inch, cushioned, vinyl-covered seats are 2 inches narrower than before (although you hardly notice with the armrests gone), and the aisles are 3 inches wider. There are more handholds for those standing, including a three-grip vertical pole near each of the three doors per car.

    That pole, set back about 4½ feet from the door, was initially a concern for disabled passengers, but I heard few complaints among the dozen or so wheelchair visitors who maneuvered in and out. The most vocal displeasure was over the long line of people waiting to enter. Said one impatient fellow, "What are they doing, selling concert tickets in there?"

    The last chance to check out the new design and share feedback with BART officials is from 2 to 9 p.m. Friday at the Concord station. If you're waiting to see cars in service, you'll be waiting until 2017.

  • For the time being, PG&E is quietly honoring a truce in its war on East Bay foliage blocking access to its natural gas lines -- several cities have threatened suits if the utility fells trees without permission -- but reader Edith Valle-Riestra thinks the utility owes residents a bit more openness about its plans.

    "PG&E could tie yellow ribbons -- or another color -- to let the public know which trees they are planning to cut," she wrote. "They will need to identify the trees in any event. This would be a way of notifying the public in an easier way than posting locations on the Internet or maps."

    The gesture couldn't do any harm, unless PG&E doesn't want its customers to see just how many trees are at risk.

  • Antioch Mayor Wade Harper made an interesting observation last week when statistics released by the state Department of Finance showed his city (population: 106,455) surpassing Richmond (106,138) as the second-largest city in Contra Costa County, behind Concord. He noted that Richmond has about twice as many police officers as Antioch.

    The big reason, of course, is that Richmond's annual budget (in excess of $130 million) is about three times that of Antioch, owing largely to property tax paid by Chevron, which is accountable for the lion's share of Richmond's revenues.

    You may remember Chevron. That's the company that Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin and her Progressive Party colleagues have so little use for.

  • So the Lafayette Library's grand experiment with a food-on-premises policy now ends, thanks to careless patrons, discarded wrappers, greasy computer keyboards, odors and stains. The City Council recently rescinded privileges at the urging of library officials. Beginning July 1, only food for thought will be permitted.

  • All's well that ends well with the Albany Bulb, now that the city has agreed to pay $3,000 to each of 28 itinerants to abandon the ramshackle encampment they'd built there. Still, it seems a bit strange that a municipality is forced to dole out cash to keep people from trespassing on its land. If this trend catches on, the homeless may have discovered a whole new revenue stream.

    Contact Tom Barnidge at tbarnidge@bayareanewsgroup.com.