Special Coverage: Top Stories Of 2016

Top stories of 2016: Cannabis changes business landscape

No. 1: Real estate, health care and tourism are just a few of the industries being entered by medical, and soon recreational, marijuana.

Top stories of 2016: Homebuilding ‘drought’ ends

No. 2: 2016 brings a boom in North Bay residential and commercial construction after seven years of little activity. “Construction as a formerly troubled industry is back,” says the CEO of North Coast Builders Exchange.

Top stories of 2016: Santa Rosa airport sees record flights, third airline

No. 3: Charles M. Schulz–Sonoma County Airport partnered with newcomers Allegiant and American Airlines to increase traffic and expand destinations. And charter operations take off at the Santa Rosa and Napa airports.

Top stories of 2016: Napa, Santa Rosa retailers endure disrupted downtowns

No. 4: Merchants in Napa and Santa watch and wait for downtown construction to end.

Top stories of 2016: Brisk wine M&A pace extends into 2017

No. 5: Demand is surging, supply is tightening and money’s still available to buy wine brands and vineyards, say top deal-makers.

Top stories of 2016: Sebastopol hospital’s comeback

No. 6: After a financially disastrous opening in late 2015, Sonoma West Medical Center is on a track to succeed.

Top stories of 2016: Delayed arrival of SMART trains

No. 7: Reduced-costs rides could be possible when SMART begins service in 2017 after sizable technical delays.

Top stories of 2016: North Bay visitor spending hits all-time high

No. 8: For the six-county region, Sonoma County had the largest amount of travel spending, followed by Napa County, fueling a boom in hotel construction.

Top stories of 2016: Attorneys say ‘yes’ to body cams

No. 9: Law enforcement use of force has become a hot-button conversation nationwide, and that was brought home by the Andy Lopez and Gabbi Lemos cases. Body-worn cameras were adopted after the Lopez case, and the cams played a big role in the Lemos case.

Top stories of 2016: St. Helena craft brew marketed like wine

No. 10: This Napa Valley brewery takes quality cues from wine marketing to craft a luxury-tier beer.

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