Today’s page one story – click here – testifies to how much Bodega Bay has changed in the past 40 years. This seaside enclave remains a fishing town – but not necessarily a town where fishermen can afford to live.

In case you missed it, Business Week magazine listed this picturesque hamlet among the 32 most expensive small towns in America. And why not? When the median price of a home exceeds $800,000, not many would call it affordable.

It’s a beautiful place, of course, kept beautiful by strict limits on new development. Limited supply plus intense demand equal higher prices. As a practical matter, limited public facilities – sewer, water, the carrying capacity of Highway 1 – make large-scale development impractical. Not to mention unpopular.

Once upon a time, this was the sleepy fishing village where Alfred Hitchcock filmed “The Birds” and where PG&E almost built a nuclear power plant.

Then along came a proposal for a controversial development, Bodega Harbour. When the lawsuits and the political machinations finally ran their course, the development won the approval of what was then the fledgling California Coast Commission.

Today, Bodega Harbour provides homes (and second homes) to the upscale folks who helped land Bodega Bay on the short list of America’s wealthiest enclaves.