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Point Transfer Moves Forward

The City of Alameda is moving forward to transfer the first phase of the former navy base from federal, to local, hands.

The City of Alameda is moving forward to transfer the first phase of the former navy base from federal, to local, hands.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Alameda City Council unanimously approved a resolution authorizing City Manager John Russo to move forward with the transfer of some 1,379 acres of dry and submerged land at the former Naval Air Station Alameda from federal to city ownership.

This first phase will see the City of Alameda take ownership of 509 acres of dry land and 870 acres of submerged land at what is now known as Alameda Point; the navy base closed in 1997 as part of an overall military base restructuring.

After a couple of false starts with master developers through housing boom years that would have seen the base redeveloped with thousands of homes, the city has returned to the original redevelopment plan that dates back to 1996. Under that plan, the federal government transfers the land to the City of Alameda at no cost, provided that redevelopment plans focus on job creation through commercial and industrial development, and housing development is kept to around 2,000 homes or fewer. Some 19,000 jobs disappeared when the base closed.

The transfer will take place in the coming weeks by way of 44 quitclaim deeds covering 66 different parcels. Those deeds will have various restrictions placed on them, depending on the presence or absence of historic or existing buildings on the parcel and soil and groundwater conditions. For most parcels, extraction and use of groundwater will be prohibited, as well excavation below a certain depth with a special City of Alameda permit.

The United States Navy is still on the hook to clean up some 104 acres of land that contain open petroleum sites, post-transfer.

Earlier this year, the City of Alameda Planning board reviewed a high-level visionary plan for the redevelopment of the base according along the lines of six new sub-districts.

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