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No Small Stores for Alameda Point – Only Big Box

At the October 23rd meeting of the City of Alameda Social Services Human Relations Board, SunCal told the board that Alameda Point can’t support small retail, only a large retail center with big box stores. This could spell doom for many of Alameda’s small businesses.

Now, we were not at the meeting ourselves, this information comes to us from a first-witness report:

“…SunCal was answering questions to the City Social Services board. The [SunCal representative] said there will be no little transit station/shopping areas. The only economically viable option is a large retail center with the big box stores. ‘No one will build a small store at the end of the line’ “

We have held off on publishing this report until now, because we wanted to confirm the statements from SunCal with the audiotape from the meeting. The City of Alameda website states that “Audio tapes of the meeting are available upon request.” However, when we contacted the City of Alameda last week to request the audio tape, we were told that there was an equipment malfunction on the day of this meeting, and that there was no audiotape available. (The contact within the City for requesting the audiotape is the Planning Department.) We were assured that we could get a copy of the meeting minutes in early December after they are approved.

If this is true, it would seem to violate the tenets of New Urbanism, and all that Peter Calthorpe has been pitching on behalf of SunCal in his development plan for Alameda Point. Harsch Realty’s Alameda Towne Center is already emptying out Park Street storefronts – a large auto-oriented retail center on Alameda Point with big-box stores would further harm the small independent merchants in Alameda.

2 comments to No Small Stores for Alameda Point – Only Big Box

  • Fred Gardner

    Love your site. Would it be possible to use a sightly larger typeface
    on your emails?

    Aging in Alameda

    PS I have a simplistic question. Do we, the residents of Alameda, effectively “own” Alameda Point, or does the Navy still own it? It seems like one of the most valuable pieces of real estate on the planet. Is the city council giving it away for a paltry 25 million (or whateverSunCal is paying)?

  • The federal government (in the form of the Navy) still owns the land – the City of Alameda does not own the land. The last documented offer price from the feds is $108 million. SunCal would have to pay $108 million, but they have been talking to the Navy to try to get the price down.

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