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Labor unions at odds over West Oakland hotel development

Every theater seat was occupied in Oakland’s city council chamber on Tuesday night, with more community members spilling into the hallway, as members of two of the city’s biggest unions turned out to take opposite sides on a proposal to build a hotel in West Oakland. In November 2016, Architectural Dimensions, an Oakland architecture and planning firm, filed an application to build a six-story 220-room hotel on what is currently an empty lot on Mandela Parkway along Oakland’s border with…

Slow but steady change to design bike and walk friendly cities

Ambitious questions about mobility, equity, housing, and safe streets in Oakland were heavily featured during a panel talk at the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association (SPUR) on Monday evening. Around 100 mostly young professionals and design enthusiasts attended the event, held at SPUR’s downtown Oakland meeting space, across the street from a recently-renovated plaza. Staff from the urban planning policy think tank, with offices serving San Jose, Oakland, and San Francisco, organized the event in partnership with Citylab,…

Oakland group connects youths with disabilities to internships

On Tuesday evening, about 15 new high school graduates with various developmental and intellectual disabilities gathered in an echoey elementary school auditorium in Oakland for an event called Ramping Up Independence. For many, it was the first time meeting staff from the organizations that would help them transition out of special education classes and into the next phase of their lives. The event was organized by East Bay Innovations (EBI), a nonprofit that helps disabled adults work and live independently….

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