Western Bluebird chicks raised on smorgasbord of bugs

The brightly colored male and its grayer colored mate were spotted briefly landing on top of an old light pole, as if to show off their insect catch.  More likely it was a precautionary stop to ensure that no predators were lurking nearby before springing into air and entering the nest cavity in the pole just below the top.

This was the only clue in early May 2020 that a pair of Western Bluebirds had a nest at the old campground at Alameda Point.  The chicks were silent and unseen for weeks until they began peering out of the hole a few days before flying away.

Continue reading “Western Bluebird chicks raised on smorgasbord of bugs”

Harbor seal pup grows up at Alameda Point

A harbor seal pup is being raised by its mom at Alameda Point.  It is the fourth year in a row that a pup has been observed utilizing the harbor seal float.  It is unknown where any of the pups were born.

Here is a gallery of photos from April showing the pup nursing, resting on the float, and riding on its mother’s back in the harbor.  The pup can be identified when on the float as the one with the light gray coat.  Continue reading “Harbor seal pup grows up at Alameda Point”

Navy stabilizes shoreline at Alameda Point

Part of the shoreline along the Oakland Estuary at Alameda Point has been upgraded with a prominent new pale gray stone embankment.  While the aesthetic value is immediately apparent, the engineering value is not.

The reinforcement of this Estuary shoreline, including several hundred feet on the Bay side, ensures that both shorelines remain stable. Continue reading “Navy stabilizes shoreline at Alameda Point”

Construction work continues at Alameda Point

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.

Here are a few photos from Thursday, March 19, 2020: Continue reading “Construction work continues at Alameda Point”

Mystery rocket company goes public at Alameda Point

Updated February 25, 2020.

In early February 2020, Astra posted a video giving the public and potential customers a look inside their rocket assembly plant at Alameda Point.

Last week on February 18, the company shipped its latest rocket to the Pacific Spaceport Complex on Kodiak Island, Alaska.  The rocket will be launched in the coming days to test its ability to place small satellites into low Earth orbit.

This video shows the journey from Alameda Point to Alaska: Continue reading “Mystery rocket company goes public at Alameda Point”

VA plans to use fuel oil for heating buildings

Using fuel oil for heating is so yesterday, yet that is exactly what the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) plans to use for its heating system at its proposed facilities at Alameda Point.

The heating system for the VA’s medical clinic and offices, as currently proposed, will utilize a boiler system heated by fuel oil.  The VA Project Manager, Kelvin Slaton, recently confirmed that it will be installing an underground fuel oil storage tank for boilers and a backup generator.  Slaton did not respond by press time as to why the VA did not choose a solar-powered electric heat pump. Continue reading “VA plans to use fuel oil for heating buildings”

Delays of VA Project tied to Trump Administration

Observations by former Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA) David Shulkin may shed light on why the VA Project at Alameda Point continues to be delayed and why the health clinic may never be built.   Constructing a new clinic conflicts with the Trump Administration’s goal of privatizing VA healthcare services.

In his book “It Shouldn’t Be This Hard to Serve Your Country – Our Broken Government and the Plight of Veterans” (Public Affairs Books, October 2019), Shulkin recounts his experiences after being appointed to head the VA by President Trump in January 2017, and then fired by Tweet 15 months later.  Shulkin asserts he was fired because he would not go along with efforts of White House insiders to privatize VA healthcare. Continue reading “Delays of VA Project tied to Trump Administration”