Development

As A’s pack up, Oakland sells its share of storied stadium

Oakland has agreed to sell its stake in the Coliseum, ending decades of ownership at the storied East Bay event complex, Mayor Sheng Thao said at a news conference Wednesday. Following years of negotiations, Oakland and the African American Sports and Entertainment Group have reached an $105 million agreement for the city’s 50% ownership stake in the stadium site. The deal comes as city officials scramble to address a significant budget deficit while dealing with the loss of the city’s…

Obstacles stand in the way of more protected bike lanes in Oakland

After a 4-year-old’s death in August, the push to develop protected bike lanes under Oakland’s Safe Oakland Streets citywide initiative has grown. But funding constraints and low personnel are preventing their construction. Maia Correia was in a seat behind her father’s bicycle on Lakeshore Avenue on Aug. 6 when a vehicle door opened in front of them. Maia hit her head on the street and died six days later. Since then, residents and traffic safety advocates have called for more protected…

Kaplan rep says councilmember is ‘truly sorry’ for ethics breach that prompted $19,000 penalty

Oakland’s Public Ethics Commission fined Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan $19,000 Wednesday, for violating the Government Ethics Act by failing to fully report her real estate holdings.  Kaplan, an at-large member of Oakland City Council since 2009, purchased a condo with her parents near Estuary Park in 2013 but failed to disclose it on a form filed annually by public officials to declare ownership of any real estate in Oakland other than their primary residence. That was problematic also because Kaplan voted twice…

Oakland council delays decision on 222-unit West Oakland development near BART

Citing environmental concerns, Oakland City Council on Tuesday again pushed back its decision on Golden West, an eight-story complex that would provide 222 housing units with ground floor retail and work space across from the West Oakland BART Station, at 1396 Fifth St.  The project has already been delayed for over a year. After the Planning Commission unanimously approved it in March 2021, it was brought before City Council in September when East Bay Residents for Responsible Development, a coalition…

Decision looms on plan to build more than 200 housing units in West Oakland

The neighborhood surrounding the West Oakland BART station could be described as a microcosm of the city’s growing housing inequality: Unhoused residents live in camps alongside new apartments and condos that cater primarily to transplants and commuters. The area is set to undergo even more changes in the next few years. As part of a larger West Oakland Specific Plan launched by the city in 2014, hundreds of market-rate units, stores and workspaces are expected, which would change West Oakland’s skyline permanently. …

Will A’s stadium project hurt more than help the community?

As the Oakland Athletics proceed to finalize a development agreement for the new baseball stadium at Howard Terminal, some community members who have been involved in the project worry that it won’t provide enough benefits to residents, including jobs and affordable housing.  “This deal is going to bring value to the property owners and create more displacement,” said Jabari Herbert, a contractor and a member of the steering committee that worked on a Community Benefits Agreement.  The committee, which included…

Want a lush garden that needs little watering? East Bay utility has a rebate for that.

Even in a drought, you don’t have to resign yourself to a brown lawn or a drab garden. A Bay Area utility recently started a “super rebate” program to encourage people to convert their wilted shrubbery into a lush garden of not-too-thirsty native plants.  The East Bay Municipal Utility District, which provides water and wastewater service to many communities in the East Bay, is offering customers $1.50 per square foot of converted turf lawn. The rebate comes as a credit…

Voting rights restored for Californians on parole

After over four decades of disenfranchisement, Californians on parole now have the right to vote. Because the U.S. invests heavily in mass incarceration, the number of people who have lost their right to vote because of their parole status has risen from 1.7 million Americans in 1976 to 6.1 million in 2016. This act would start to reverse those numbers.  In Alameda County, an overwhelming majority of residents voted to make this possible. 74% of the population voted to restore…

Alameda County approves purchase of hotel to house the homeless

The Alameda County Board of Supervisors unanimously accepted a state grant to purchase property to house the homeless population, as part of California’s efforts to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic among vulnerable groups. Even though the recommendations passed, some supervisors voiced concerns about the process. The board’s Vice President and District 5 Supervisor Keith Carson said he felt like a “gun was held in his head” just before voting. Some supervisors said they were not happy about voting…