A new state law that took effect in January 2020 has stymied the City’s plan for commercial development on a plot of land at Alameda Point. Assembly Bill No. 1486 requires cities, counties, special districts, and the state to first offer any and all “surplus” land to affordable housing developers before it can be leased for more than one year or sold. This legislation amended the Surplus Lands Act and, unbeknownst to the city when they supported the bill, swept in former military bases.
The city had received proposals from 10 commercial developers as a result of its marketing campaign in 2019. Each applicant was willing to pay at least the minimum listing price of $36.5 million for 22 acres in the Enterprise District and provide a construction timeline. The acreage is within the larger commercial and light industrial zone adjacent to Main Street, and includes the self-storage facilities. This new law meant that the City was unable to proceed with the selection process.
“It’s ironic,” said Nanette Mocanu, Assistant Director of Base Reuse & Community Development. “The City is a proponent for affordable housing and supported this legislation. We and many other communities were caught off guard when the legislation was applied to leasing and base reuse properties,” said Mocanu. “Cities across the state are working to find solutions to the unintended consequences of this legislation.”
Construction workers at Alameda Point’s Site A residential and commercial project offer a sign of hope for the future as they continue building a new neighborhood. Construction work is exempt from the stay-at-home orders during the Covid 19 pandemic. Workers must observe the distancing directives from health officials.
On Monday, December 9, 2019, the Planning Board will consider approving changes to the Waterfront Park and Block 11 at Site A at Alameda Point that were previously approved in 2016 “in an effort to reduce escalating construction costs and long term maintenance costs for both the building and the park.” The City has already granted numerous modifications to the development agreement, with good reasons. The current request does not merit approval because it would cheapen the waterfront focal point. Continue reading “Developer proposes changes that would cheapen waterfront area”
On December 9, 2019, Alameda Point Partners, the developer of 68-acre Site A at Alameda Point, will ask the Planning Board to approve changes for two areas: one residential and commercial block and part of the Waterfront Park. The change in plans includes making the residential units smaller and adding landscaping.
The developer wants to “reduce escalating construction costs and long term maintenance costs for both the building and the park,” wrote Allen Tai, City Planner, in the staff report. The developer wants to reduce the approved size of the residential/commercial building on Block 11 next to the Seaplane Lagoon from 453,452 square feet to 377,318 square feet, without reducing the overall number of residential units.
Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) staff are in the early stages of planning for a second tube across San Francisco Bay. One of the routes being considered is under Alameda and would bring with it at least one station. It could also bring Amtrak’s Capitol Corridor train service running in tandem with BART trains across the Bay.
Before any plans are drafted, the transit agency must first determine the amount of ridership the transit system will serve in the decades ahead. To get there, BART is looking at more than just the traditional 9-county region. They are looking at projected transit needs of a 21-county mega-region stretching from Placerville to Monterey. And standard-gauge rail agencies, like Amtrak, have become a partner in BART’s planning effort. Continue reading “BART station may come to Alameda Point”
The heavy equipment was already demolishing buildings and pavement as the ceremonial groundbreaking took place on May 23. Workers had already leveled many of the structures. They had already begun separating the remains into distinct piles of concrete, asphalt, structural steel, sheet metal and rebar for recycling.
“Everything that can be recycled is being recycled,” said Joe Ernst, president of srmErnst, one of the Alameda Point Partners group busy at Site A. “In our bidding we pushed for everything to be separated and recycled, with the value of recycled material offsetting demo cost. All of the ground-up asphalt and concrete will remain onsite and be used under streets and any exterior concrete structures and surfaces.” Continue reading “Demolition Underway at Alameda Point”
On March 6, the Alameda City Council will consider a change to the stalled development deal for Site A, the mixed-use project at Alameda Point. The proposed change would remove a restrictive condition governing the order in which construction happens.
Alameda Point Partners (APP), the developer for Site A, is requesting an amendment to its Development and Disposition Agreement. The amendment would remove a provision that allows the city to withhold building permits for market rate units if the affordable housing subcontractor, Eden Housing, is unable to secure all of its financing. The purpose of the current provision, called a Metering Provision, was to ensure that the affordable housing units would be built in a timely manner. The city has approved the designs for Eden’s 70-unit family affordable complex and 60-unit senior affordable complex. Continue reading “Site A mixed-use construction poised to commence”