15 October 2007

NY Times article

A NY Times article (reporter Dan Reed) about Cisco Field has the rather sensationalistic headline, "Oakland's Dream Stadium, or Traffic Nightmare?"

The article only briefly mentions the traffic problem and gets a quote from long-time fan Erin Hallissy, who I assume lives in Contra Costa County:
“For the loyal fans who live east of Oakland,” said Hallissy, who edits the alumni magazine at Saint Mary’s College, “it would just be too far to go to a game, especially on a workday when we’d be stuck with all the commuter traffic fighting their way home.”
Unfortunately, I saw this article at 7:00 p.m., at the tail end of evening rush hour, which was a bit messy thanks to a light shower and the astounding inability of many Californians to drive in inclement weather. Nevertheless, I immediately went to and took a snapshot of the traffic map. I queried the drive time from Lafayette to Fremont (Mission Blvd. South/680), which is a bit past the Auto Mall/Durham exit that would lead fans coming from 680 to Cisco Field. Here's what I plotted (click image for bigger version):

35 minutes. The blue line indicates the route. As I've said before, southbound 680 in the evening is often not the nightmare many make it out to be. Much of the ballpark traffic will run opposite commute traffic, plus it will be distributed among 4 separate freeway segments plus some larger area thoroughfares.

But who am I to argue? A spicy headline beats dry analysis for reader attention any day of the week.

The tortoise phase

Fremont officials have been grumbling louder in recent weeks about the A's delays in getting the development application in. FWIW I'm glad. They've expressed this frustration to any media person who asks - including me. I don't know if it will get the app in more quickly, but it can't hurt to put feet to the fire. Both the City and the A's have remained professional and cordial throughout.

In today's East Bay Business Times article by David Goll, Lew Wolff admits that the team's in "the tortoise phase":
Wolff himself admits he's in "the tortoise phase" of his plan, anticipating up to 18 months for the city's planning and review process to unfold once he submits a formal proposal. He also foresees spending $20 million to $30 million for a detailed design for the entire development and, assuming the Fremont City Council gives his plans a green light, about two years for construction of the stadium.
Fremont's economic development director Daren Fields gave his opinion on when he thinks the ballpark could open: 2012. I think it can still happen in 2011, but if the application isn't submitted in the next few weeks an April 2011 opening date could certainly be in jeopardy.