Late this afternoon, the Alameda Architectural Preservation Society (AAPS) announced that they have taken a position of opposition to SunCal’s ballot initiative. What follows below is the full text of their announcement.
The AAPS Opposes SunCal’s Alameda Point Revitalization Initiative
ALAMEDA, CALIF. October 22, 2009 — The Alameda Architectural Preservation Society (AAPS), a member-based community organization committed to the preservation of Alameda’s historic structures, today announced that its Board of Directors released a Position Statement on its opposition to SunCal Companies’ Alameda Point Revitalization Initiative.
“The Alameda Architectural Preservation Society’s Board of Directors firmly opposes the Revitalization Initiative. SunCal Companies Revitalization Initiative presents inherent uncertainties and inconsistencies that have not been addressed either publically or through outreach conducted by the AAPS,” said Nancy Hird, President of the AAPS Board of Directors. “It’s very important for Alameda citizens to know that this Revitalization Initiative threatens significant Alameda historic resources with unnecessary destruction and alteration of facilities and homes at Alameda Point.”
As detailed in AAPS’s Position Statement, AAPS asserts that:
Historic structures outside the “Preservation Mixed Use” boundaries defined in the Initiative’s Specific Plan are subject to the Developer’s (SunCal’s) unilateral demolition by right without any input from the City of Alameda or its residents.
The Naval Air Station’s Historic District’s physical boundaries would be significantly reduced in size from those set forth in the 1992 Historic Architectural Resources Inventory.
SunCal proposes to write its own Historic Resources Design Guidelines (HRDG) and it is unclear if the Guidelines would include Standards set by the Secretary of the Interior.
The proposed approval processes for alteration or demolition of historic resources, as included in the Initiative, are often too broad, easily subject to abuse, and the boundaries of the Preservation Mixed Use area are not shown consistently within their own Specific Plan.
The provisions of the Initiative allow higher levels of density, lax demolition controls, and an approval process without necessary checks and balances.
The Initiative would supersede the findings of other studies such as an Environmental Impact Report or other environmental documents, thereby further weakening protection for historic structures.
The AAPS has made its Position Statement available on its website at: www.alameda-preservation.org.
About the Alameda Architectural Preservation Society
The Alameda Architectural Preservation Society (AAPS) was founded in 1972 as a community organization committed to the preservation of Alameda’s historic structures. The AAPS has a membership base that is 300 members strong, and is known for its preservation outreach efforts including: a preservation Newsletter, ongoing membership meetings, annual Preservation Awards, and the annual Alameda Legacy Home Tour which is conducted in partnership with the Alameda Museum.