Alameda Point gateway plan begins taking shape

At its January 20, 2015 meeting, the city council will weigh-in on the preliminary layout proposed by developer Alameda Point Partners (APP) for a 68-acre residential and commercial parcel between Main Street and the Seaplane Lagoon.

West Atlantic Avenue will be realigned as a four-lane divided street to the right of the big tree and become a continuation of Ralph Appezzato Memorial Parkway.  Main Street in foreground.
West Atlantic Avenue will be realigned as a four-lane divided street to the right of the big tree and become a continuation of Ralph Appezzato Memorial Parkway. Main Street in foreground.

APP was selected by the former city council on November 18, 2014, to work up a plan for 800 condos and apartments and 200,000 square feet of retail and commercial space. The developer will also be responsible for changing the gateway street alignment from an oval to a straight line leading to a new public plaza at the Seaplane Lagoon.

Buidling with "E" in lower left will be reused.  Building 118 was formerly a warehouse and then became the Navy Exchange Building, which was divided to create a mall.  Building 117 was called Storehouse.  Building 67 was called the Locomotive Shed and Automotive Repair Shop.  Building 162 on West Atlantic was called the Engine Overhaul Building and was constructed in 1945.  Building 113 was used for aircraft repair work.  Residential buildings closest to Seaplane Lagoon will have first-floor retail.  Realigned Appezzato Parkway will become a pedestrian-friendly roadway near Seaplane Lagoon.
Buidling with “E” in lower left will be reused. Building 118 was formerly a warehouse and then became the Navy Exchange Building, which was divided to create a mall. Building 117 was called Storehouse. Building 67 was called the Locomotive Shed and Automotive Repair Shop. Building 162 on West Atlantic was called the Engine Overhaul Building and was constructed in 1945. Building 113 was used for aircraft repair work. Residential buildings closest to Seaplane Lagoon will have first-floor retail. Realigned Appezzato Parkway will become a pedestrian-friendly roadway near Seaplane Lagoon.

Normally, development projects are first presented to the planning board. At the November city council meeting, however, staff was directed to check in with the city council regularly to receive guidance on the development plan. “As a result, staff is bringing the preliminary concept plan to the city council first before presenting it to the Planning Board,” said Jennifer Ott, Chief Operating Officer for Alameda Point.

Building 113, which will be reused.  Seaplane Lagoon to the right.  Ferry Point Road, currently to the right of Building 113, will be realigned to the left of Building 112.  W. Atlantic Avenue with car will be moved north to the vantage point of the camera.
Building 113 to right of tracks will be reused. Seaplane Lagoon to the right. Ferry Point Road, currently to the right of Building 113, will be realigned to the left of Building 113. W. Atlantic Avenue with car will be moved north to the vantage point of the camera.

APP plans to construct a new ferry terminal in the Seaplane Lagoon and contribute $5 million toward the proposed 44-acre Alameda Point sports complex.

The developer will also construct a necessary sanitary sewer line from the north side of Alameda Point through the heart of the adaptive reuse area. “This new sewer infrastructure is crucial to facilitating new employment-generating development in the adaptive reuse and enterprise areas,” said Ott. “Without this important piece of new infrastructure it will be very challenging to attract new job-generating development to Alameda Point.”

The project will include eight acres of parkland at the Seaplane Lagoon. By adding park space and instituting early phase outdoor events at the “Site A” waterfront, the city is hoping to create a sense of place and offer amenities for potential employees, which is considered crucial to attracting major commercial users, according to the staff report.

Note that the developer proposal makes modifications to the precise plan adopted by the city in July 2014 (partial view shown above).  Developer will construct new ferry terminal in Seaplane Lagoon near Site A.  The Water Emergency Transportation Authority has not yet completed their study of moving the Main Street ferry terminal to the Seaplane Lagoon.
Note that the developer proposal makes modifications to the precise plan adopted by the city in July 2014 (partial view shown above). Developer will construct new ferry terminal in Seaplane Lagoon near Site A. The Water Emergency Transportation Authority has not yet completed their study of moving the Main Street ferry terminal to the Seaplane Lagoon.

APP’s investment dollars spent realigning the gateway street will qualify as city matching funds in the city’s application for $25 million in recently approved Measure BB transit funds, as well as federal funds, for adding transit and bike lanes to Ralph Appezzato Memorial Parkway from Main Street to Webster Street. The old railroad right of way on the south side of Appezzato Parkway will allow for adding the new lanes.

The developer is proposing to reuse seven buildings for commercial purposes. “We don’t want to scrape the site and start from scratch,” said APP Project Manager and Alameda resident Joe Ernst. “It wouldn’t have the right feel, given all of the original buildings that will be reused elsewhere at Alameda Point.” Ernst said that APP plans to hold on to the reuse buildings and lease them out.

Building 118 - former Navy Exchange Building - with bulb-out sitting areas.  Maritime ships at Seaplane Lagoon in background. West Trident Avenue in front of Building 118 will become a landscaped boulevard and a through street from Main Street (currently blocked).
Building 118 – former Navy Exchange Building – with bulb-out sitting areas. Maritime ships at Seaplane Lagoon in background. West Trident Avenue in front of Building 118 will become a landscaped boulevard and a through street from Main Street (currently blocked).

A development agreement could be approved as early as May if no extensions are granted for the negotiating period. At least four city council votes are required for the city to approve a land sale to the developer.

“If a development agreement is signed this summer, we could begin horizontal infrastructure improvements by early 2016,” said Ernst.

Newly elected Vice Mayor Frank Matarrese, who campaigned on a slow-growth platform, said, “I’m going to be carefully looking at all the information I can get on this and listening to every comment and input. I want to make certain we don’t overburden the west side of the city.”

Originally published in the Alameda Sun.

Alameda Point Partners presentation

City staff presentation

Site A Initial Concept Development Plan – Includes details about building heights, setbacks, street layout, bus route, etc., that are not in the Alameda Point Partners “presentation” listed above.

Upcoming:   January 29 – Open House hosted by Alameda Point Partners at Callahan Piano Studios at Alameda Point.  Flyer on Open House and schedule of public meetings on Site A.  

Industrial parcel on Site A that will be demolished to make way for Appezzato Parkway.
Industrial parcel on Site A that will be demolished to make way for Appezzato Parkway.
New alignment of Ferry Point Road, looking north with Buildings 113 and 162 that will be reused.
New alignment of Ferry Point Road, looking north with Buildings 113 and 162 that will be reused.

Site A development phases

Building 162, Engine Overhaul Building constructed in 1945, will be reused, at least partially.  Existing street in photo from tracks leftward will become landscaped public space.  Area where rail tracks are will become Ferry Point Road.
Building 162, Engine Overhaul Building constructed in 1945, will be reused, at least partially. Existing street in photo from tracks leftward will become landscaped public space. Area where rail tracks are will become Ferry Point Road.
Formerly used as a storehouse, this building will be reused.  Developer says it is structurally sound.
Formerly used as a storehouse, this building will be reused. Developer says it is structurally sound.
Building 118 was formerly a warehouse and then became the Navy Exchange Building, which was divided to create a mall.  Bayport is in the background.
Building 118 was formerly a warehouse and then became the Navy Exchange Building, which was divided to create a mall. Bayport is in the background.
Building 67 was called the Locomotive Shed and Automotive Repair Shop.  It will be reused for retail.
Building 67 was called the Locomotive Shed and Automotive Repair Shop. It will be reused for retail.
Building 98, located on the west side of Building 67, will be reused.
Building 98, located on the west side of Building 67, will be reused.

Site A park areas

Author: richard94501

My blog is Alameda Point Environmental Report covering environmental issues from wildlife to cleanup at the former Navy base in Alameda now called Alameda Point. Articles on my blog are frequently printed in the Alameda Sun newspaper. I also host a Twitter site and a Flickr photo site. I hope you find my stories and photos of interest. Richard Bangert Alameda, California

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