Oakland Estuary

Homeless camps dispersed from park across the water

A new issue has arisen on the Oakland Estuary across from the Alameda Marina. Alameda and Oakland residents and businesses along the estuary breathed easier some five years ago with the completion of a $4.3 million cleanup of the waterway. The Alameda Police Department (APD) was among 15 agencies involved in clearing the estuary of debris. (“Estuary Cleanup in Full Swing,” Oct. 25, 2013). 

Paul Douglas Scherer of Alameda died Sunday when the minivan he was driving plunged into the Oakland Estuary. Witnesses called 911 about 8:30 a.m. to report that they saw a white minivan go into the estuary off Derby Avenue in Oakland, across from the Bridgeside Shopping Center. 

“It’s a dead-end street that stops at the estuary,” Oakland Fire Department (OFD) Battalion Chief Nick Luby said. “The vehicle drove down the street and ended up in the estuary.”


The Alameda Planning Board held a public hearing on the proposed Alameda Shipways Residential Project along the Oakland Estuary at its April 24 meeting.

The project will be located between 1100 and 1250 Marina Village Parkway. The structure would be four stories at 55 feet high and 450 feet long. It would occupy 8.1 acres of land.

Update to Cab Driver Rescue Story
The Alameda Sun received additional information on last week’s story regarding an AFD water rescue team’s efforts to rescue a local cab driver who had driven off the road. 

On Sunday, Jan. 8, members of the Alameda Fire Department (AFD) and the Oakland Fire Department (OFD) responded to the report of an occupied vehicle in the water off Doolittle Drive at Langley Street near Oakland International Airport. 

Rescue swimmers from AFD entered the water and were able to locate and remove Jarnail Singh, 57, from his submerged vehicle.


Alameda Landing is about to enter its final phase of development. A 2006 plan that called for all commercial on the 41-acre waterfront parcel behind Target is being replaced with a new plan. It includes an additional 375 housing units, a 124-room hotel, restaurants and a small amount of commercial space. An eight-acre waterfront park and promenade remain as the centerpiece. 


More than 1,000 people enjoyed three days of waterfront tours along the Oakland Estuary this past weekend as part of Rhythmix Cultural Works’ Island City Waterways event. The walking tour turned performance art happening was extremely well received and well organized, selling out each performance. Above, tour guide Julie Baron of Julie’s Coffee & Tea Garden leads a group through the series of dance, music and spoken word performances behind Bridgeside Shopping Center on Sunday. 

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.

Bill Poland is the majority owner of Pacific Shops Inc. (PSI) that leases the land from the city where the Alameda Marina stands. He is moving forward with his plans to redevelop the site. 

According to Poland, the city “specifically designated (the marina) for mixed-use redevelopment and as a multifamily housing site to fulfill Alameda’s Housing Element commitments.” Not everyone agrees with Poland’s interpretation of “redevelopment.” Some fear that redevelopment could spell the end for all the marina-oriented businesses at the site. 

The Port of Oakland Board of Commissioners approved a tentative agreement with the Oakland Athletics that will allow the baseball team to build a stadium across the Oakland Estuary at Howard Terminal.


A self-serving group of wealthy Alameda homeowners dominated the April 25 City Council meeting. They sought to exclude other Alamedans access to long-held public waterfront land on the shores of the Oakland Estuary.