The Caramel Popcorn Did It!
HOMES had many visitors to our booth at the March 12th Chamber of Commerce Business Expo. We're pretty sure it was due to the Caramel Popcorn that HOMES provided. Thank you Joan Konrad!
Several people stopped by to look at the posters, view our power point and take the density quiz (more about our quiz to follow). It was a great opportunity to educate people about Alameda Point and the opportunities for sustainable development there
SunCal Extension Request Approved
At the March 5th ARRA meeting, the ARRA voted to grant SunCal's request for a timeline extension. The ARRA/City Council/CIC joint meeting approved an amendment to the original Exclusive Negotiating Contract (ENA) allowing a six month extension and specifying certain terms and conditions: Reports of work/studies completed to date and monthly reporting of progress; quarterly deposits of $342,00 in a Negotiating Fund Account to fully fund ARRA's costs; and $350,000 quarterly deposits into Developer Consultant Costs Account, to ensure payment for SunCal's third party consultants.
Upcoming May 5 Presentation by WRT Solomon
A tentative public meeting of the Alameda Point Task Force is scheduled for May 5, 2008 in Council Chambers at 6:30 p.m. Results of the WRT/Solomon Analysis of Land Use Alternatives for Alameda Point will be presented. Results of the Analysis are expected to be made public 10 - 14 days before the meeting so that people will have time to read it before the meeting and can ask questions at that time.
Alameda: In the Swim of It
The Sun's recent article on how global warming will affect Alameda is alarming. But it also provides ways Alameda can take control of its destiny, specifically by restoring wetlands and building higher density housing.
March 28, 2008
Global Warming Creating Maritime Future for Alameda
by Marc Albert
A rising tide may lift all boats but global warming will sink large swaths of Alameda and the Bay Area, according to long-range research on local climate change impacts unveiled by a state official Tuesday.
Both Oakland and San Francisco airports will be underwater in 100 years' time, said Will Travis, Executive Director of the San Francisco Bay Conservation & Development Committee (BCDC).
So, How Dense Are You?
Some of you took our Density Quiz last month and some may have taken it at the Chamber Expo recently. We're curious how you did so we're inviting you to take it again.
You'll be able to automatically send in your score and sign up for our monthly e-newsletter if you'd like.
What Do You Expect to Find in Your Neighborhood?
By Helen Sause
Alameda Point will be a brand new neighborhood in our City. When I think of what I would expect to have nearby my home, I think of neighbors who live in big or small houses, apartments or condos, who can walk to public transit and jobs. I think of the neighborhood coffee and tea houses, shops for shoe repair or framing, a post office, churches and having our children able to walk to school and parks.
The discussions of Alameda Point have mostly focused on the types of housing that is to be built there. This is critical since it has a major impact on the planning of a neighborhood. But let's not be blind to the uses that really make a neighborhood. Most of them take years to plan, finance and get built, so we need to be incorporating them as part of the plans for Alameda Point NOW and ensure they are included in the process.
Bayport, KB Homes and Bruzzone are examples of neighborhoods built with no thought other than housing alone, built with none of the above uses other than some park area and a school. I believe that most of us would rather live in a neighborhood where a child can walk or bike to the store, where we can walk or bike to work or public transit, or meet a friend for coffee.
Examples of neighborhoods that incorporate a mixture of uses and services can be found all throughout Alameda in a broad range of housing types - from big houses to small cottages, condos and apartments, as well as neighborhood retail, parks, schools and access to public transit. This mixed use exemplifies the charm and neighborhood feeling so loved by many Alamedans.
Let's consider the various elements that make these uses viable besides a mixture of housing types.
Commercial: Alameda Point has about 4 million square feet of commercial space to be developed as part of the plan, including industrial, commercial, and research and development uses. Who will develop it? How will it fit in with the goal of a jobs / housing balance? How does the timing of this fit in with the development of housing to provide jobs and reduce the likelihood of off-Island commutes?
Retail: How much? What kind? Will we achieve the neighborhood retail we all say we want to see or will there be just large stores clustered away from our neighborhoods?
Amenities: Which ones? Post office? Schools? Parks? Branch library? Churches?
Public transit: What is needed to serve Alameda Point AND the entire Island? Who is seriously planning this? Is it being integrated with other developments on the books at Alameda Landing, the Northern Waterfront and the Coast Guard housing site? What agencies and communities (Oakland / San Leandro, for example) are engaged in this planning? How firmly committed arethey to this critical piece of the development?
Basic Infrastructure Questions: Who provides all of the infrastructure for Alameda Point? This is major: roads, electrical, water, sewer, flood plain and bay mud containment, etc. Do the plans include the infrastructure and clean up of the entire site? What is the responsibility of the Veterans and/or Fish and Wildlife Agencies in all this? How do the plans accommodate their potential developments?
City Leverage: It seems to me that the breaking point in making Alameda Point cohesive and economically successful is to allow some "room" for the City to negotiate to achieve the City benefits desired. This includes inclusion of affordable housing, transit contributions, etc., that our expectations have heaped on this deal. Sun Cal is being expected to deal with serious new site issues, reduced development opportunities, and an impractical land price (whatever happened to the agreed-upon zero land transfer from the Navy?) At any rate, there seems to be NO opportunity in this deal - not to mention the condition of the economy - for the City to achieve its hoped for objectives
Let's lay all the cards out for the public to consider. Let's see where the desired uses are to be that make a neighborhood truly a pleasant place to live. Let's see who is planning to pay for these. Let's be realistic about what the economics really are. Let's find out who is budgeting for the amenities we agree are needed. There is a tiny bit of time before the next public meetings and we need to understand the elements that will make Alameda Point the new neighborhood we have envisioned since the closure of the Naval Air Station 15 years ago.
HOMES is a grassroots citizenís group dedicated to promoting responsible development at Alameda Point. In this era of global warming,
rising fuel prices, growing traffic congestion and ever-increasing housing prices, we are advocating for Alamedaís newest neighborhood to
support sustainable growth that provides homes and jobs and addresses traffic issues for all Alamedans.
Support Education and Public Discussion of Alameda Point Development
HOMESí needs your support for efforts to educate the community about the issues and opportunities surrounding redevelopment at Alameda Point. HOMES is solely funded by community contributions. Please send your donation to:
Rose Foundation/ HOMES, 816 Grand St., Alameda, CA 94501
Donations are tax-deductible. (Rose is our fiscal partner)