Letters to the Editor
The federal land on McKay Avenue, adjacent to Crown Memorial State Beach, isn’t an appropriate location for the proposed Wellness Center. The land should be rezoned to open space, consistent with Measure WW, as passed in 2008.
I reviewed the draft mitigated negative declaration prepared by the city and am concerned that the identified impacts are understated and primarily located within the project site. Negative impacts on the park and neighborhood are glossed over.
Here is an example of an erroneous conclusion:
Hazards and Hazardous Materials — pg. 43, Section h). “Exposure to wildland fires: The project is located in a fully built-out urbanized area, with no wildlands anywhere near the project area. There is no potential for the proposed project to result in the exposure of people or structures to wildland fires.”
The conclusion is terrifyingly incorrect. The project site is surrounded by trees. Crab Cove is filled with trees, including a contiguous line of trees starting immediately across from the proposed project site and continuing to the baseball field. The tree line is immediately adjacent to buildings, as are the trees lining McKay.
Crab Cove has posted “no barbecues or fires allowed due to extreme fire danger” signs all over the park. The fire danger in California is at a historic high. One spark from the construction project could start a devastating fire in the park.
The Wellness Center project should not be approved until all negative impacts on the surrounding areas are fully identified and considered.
What a celebration for all Alamedans, as tours of the new Jean Sweeney Open Space Park us what civic vision and determination can add to a city. The timing of this unveiling is excellent, as we Alamedans have recently learned there are several parcels of publicly owned land along the Fernside Boulevard and Eastshore Drive waterfront which most of us were unaware of.
Now that we know of them, it’s time for the city to reclaim all of this public land and make it available to the public.
Let’s continue the legacy of Jean Sweeney by returning access to our glorious natural surroundings back to the public!
After many months and much discussion, three councilmembers voted to create Ordinance 3148. That was three years ago.
In the 2016 election it was confirmed by the voters of Alameda, by a large margin when it ran against a Berkeley-style rent control. After five months, two of the same councilmembers, along with the newest councilmember, voted to change the ordinance to become more like the Berkeley-style rent control. They call it rent stabilization — but most people consider it rent control — when a city places restrictions on what you can do with and charge for your own property. No longer are tenants evicted so landlords can raise the rent to market value.
It should be noted that there are approximately 13,389 units subject to rent control. A little more than 3,300 are corporate managed. The balance of approximately 10,000 units are owned by “moms and pops” or smaller property owners. There are some 2,000 other units that are section 8 and not restricted by any rent control or stabilization.
The councilmembers have many concerns here in Alameda: traffic, future major development, future bicycle paths, where to place the cannabis shops and regulations, improved pathways along Eastshore Drive and Fernside Boulevard, climate change, as well as the selection of a new city manager.
Voting “yes” on Measure K makes the ordinance a City Charter amendment. This prevents rent control or stabilization from becoming a political volleyball, vulnerable to the whims of City Council. If changes are needed to Ordinance 3148 in the future, the changes could be put to a vote by all Alamedans in a general election at a fraction of the cost of a special election.