The Revitalize Alameda Point plan in Measure B presented the voters a plan built upon the community principles for Alameda Point. The defeat of Measure B means that there is not currently a plan in place to implement the communityís vision at the site of the former Navy base. Alameda elected officials have publicly stated they support the community plan. Having opposed Measure B, it is now their responsibility to find a way to implement it.
HOMES (Housing Opportunities Make Economic Sense) is a grassroots advocacy group that has worked for years to see the fulfillment of the community-created vision for Alameda Point that would transform the former navy base into a financially viable, environmentally sustainable, mixed-use asset for all of Alameda. After 17 years of planning and numerous failed attempts, Alameda finally had a plan in Measure B that achieved the key community goals and was financially viable.
A majority of our elected officials have stated publicly that they support the land use plan that was the foundation of the Measure B initiative, but were concerned with some of the fiscal aspects of the initiative. City officials actively campaigned against Measure B and even chose to spend $350,000 of taxpayer money to force a special election that helped to defeat Measure B. With this defeat, there can be no question that the responsibility for finding an alternative way of implementing this plan rests squarely with our elected leaders.
The current conditions at the Point are not sustainable. The liability to the city for the financial drain and environmental risk is not acceptable. The city has spent $120 million to date on maintenance of the buildings and infrastructure on land it doesnít even own (the Navy does) and these costs rise every year. In addition, the lead and asbestos that remain in these crumbling buildings present a growing environmental liability to our community and its residents.
And the citizens of Alameda continue to wait to see their thoughtfully developed vision for Alameda Point become a reality.
Now it is time for this community vision to be implemented. It has been long enough.
Our city leadership must find a way to implement the citizensí plan and transform the former base from a decaying and contaminated eyesore into a sustainable, vibrant community. By campaigning against Measure B, the city has asked for that challenge and we, as residents of Alameda, must hold them accountable. We cannot afford to wait.
Helen Sause, 02.03.10