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Open Letter to City Council Regarding Alameda Point and SunCal

Dear Council members,

We know that many of you on Council are thankful to have SunCal prepared to drive the campaign to change Measure A, so that none of you have to take on any political risk yourselves by doing so. But how can you continue to justify doing business with SunCal given their questionable practices?

All up and down California, from San Clemente to Oakland, SunCal has been lying to City Officials and the bankruptcy courts, asserting that they are the authoritative managing partner over the 30 or so bankrupt Lehman-backed SunCal development projects. SunCal is trying to save these projects by forcing DE Shaw into each deal with a $75 million capital injection. Has everyone forgotten the golden rule? They who have the gold make the rules. Lehman provided the financing for these now-bankrupt projects, not SunCal, and SunCal is not the authoritative partner. Lehman’s attorney’s have sent letters to the bankruptcy courts and to SunCal reminding SunCal of their subordinate position in the bankruptcy proceedings. SunCal is NOT calling the shots.

Locally, SunCal has been lying to Alameda residents. In November of last year, SunCal paid a firm to conduct a telephone survey of Alameda residents. When asked, the calling agents told Alameda residents that the City of Alameda was conducting the survey. But when questioned, SunCal admitted to City Council that they in fact were behind the survey.

It’s clear from their behavior that SunCal is not to be believed. We can’t believe them when they say their 4,500 homes won’t generate traffic problems, and we can’t believe them when they say they will build a sports complex to replace half of the sports fields at Alameda Point they plan to dig up and replace with homes. We need to stop doing business with SunCal and examine other alternatives that preserve the existing uses at Alameda Point, such as a Public Land Trust, similar to the San Francisco Presidio.

A special public-private corporation would take title to the land after clean-up by the Navy and manage it with a mandate to preserve existing uses, create jobs, light-industry (and business-to-business sales tax), preserve access to the San Francisco Bay and create open space. The mandate would also include private-public partnerships such as pairing a V.A. hospital and clinic with our local community colleges to produce more desperately needed nursing school graduates, or pairing the existing film studio at Alameda Point with our local public schools to teach our children about film and art. These are just some of the possibilities – there are countless others when we stop SunCal from blinding us to them.

– Action Alameda

1 comment to Open Letter to City Council Regarding Alameda Point and SunCal

  • Linda Larkin

    The same reason they only enforce codes they like. There have been illegal signs on Santa Clara Ave that were suppose to be removed when I was on the planning board over 15 years ago. The same reason there is a large astrology sign that just went up on Park St. The same reason they have always gone with the developer, the developer is smarter and planners need to justify their jobs. SO WHAT IS NEW.

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