City Set to Accept More Land at Point

Eric J. Kos The city is set to accept more land at Alameda Point from the Navy. The transfer scheduled for March includes the submerged land under Seaplane Lagoon and the docks that house the Maritime Administration’s ready reserve fleet and the USS Hornet.

Wharves, shoreline to be made available to Alameda

The City Council is set to approve a resolution that would allow the city to accept phase two of the conveyance agreement that the city negotiated with the United States Navy. Phase two comprises 183.44 acres of land at Alameda Point: nine parcels with 29.83 acres of uplands and two parcels with 153.61 acres of submerged land.

The uplands include five parcels or clusters of parcels: one along the Oakland Estuary and the others west and southwest of Seaplane Lagoon. The submerged land includes both Seaplane Lagoon and the waters where the Maritime Administration (MARAD) ready reserve fleet and the USS Hornet are docked.

The transfer, which is tentatively scheduled for March, marks the second of four scheduled phases of property conveyances. Phase one conveyance of some 1,379 acres, broken down into 509 acres of uplands and 870 acres of submerged land took place in June 2013. Once the city has title to the property it will be able to sell the parcels for private development. According to city staff, only two acres of the uplands involved in phase two contain restrictions on land use. These restrictions will not allow the building of homes, hospitals, schools or day care facilities on the two acres in question. 

In addition 7.5 acres of the property involved in the phase-two conveyances contain open petroleum sites. City staff reports that the Navy will still be obligated to clean-up the open petroleum sites even after the conveyance has taken place. Staff states the most of this 7.5 acres have minor contamination or require minor additional investigation before the city can put this acreage to use. “Upon conveyance, the city will manage a program through its existing permitting database to help ensure that unauthorized activities and land uses do not occur on specified petroleum sites,” staff stated in its report to the City Council. 

The process allowing the conveyance of the Naval Air Station began with the adoption of a reuse plan in 1996, a year before the base closed. In 2000 the Alameda Reuse and Redevelopment Authority (ARRA) entered into an agreement with the Navy that authorized no-cost conveyances of portions of the former base. 

The city took over ARRA’s role in the process in 2012 after a decision by the California Supreme Court did away with redevelopment agencies. 

The City Council is also scheduled to hear a status report on the current environmental conditions at Alameda Point at its Feb. 2 confab.