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27 January 2009

Alternative to the alternative

Over the weekend I got an interesting message from someone who worked for the City of Fremont. Apparently, there was a small push to get the city and the A's to consider a Fremont ballpark site other than Pacific Commons and Warm Springs. The source even got a mock-up aerial photo showing where the ballpark would be placed:

For those who are not familiar with Fremont, the site is Central Park. The ballpark would be placed next to police headquarters, a short distance from the park's Lake Elizabeth. It would displace a cluster of softball fields, which could conceivably be relocated. Central Park is located at the corner of Paseo Padre Parkway and Stevenson Boulevard, and is at the outer edge of what could be considered Fremont's "downtown" area.

The major advantage to this site is its proximity to BART, 1/2-mile away. Since it's on parkland, it also wouldn't require private land acquisition. According to the source, there is plenty of potential for parking in the commercial area to the west. The site is actually along the path planned for the Warm Springs Extension. BART would tunnel under the park, including the lake.

Two issues immediately pop up regarding the site. It's about 3 miles from either 880 or 680, and the drive is on what are currently congested, major arterial streets (Stevenson and Mission Blvd.). If you look closely at the broader view below, you'll also see that anyone driving will be going through a whole mess of residential area, much of it single-family residences in the Irvington and Mission San Jose neighborhoods.

In the past on this blog, someone has brought up a similar concept. I had always considered it difficult because of the distance from the freeways. This concept died in City Hall despite some persistence. No explanation was given as to why.

What do you think of this concept? Does it solve the problems presented by the Pacific Commons and Warm Springs alternatives, or does it introduce more problems than it solves?

66 comments:

Anonymous said...

Humm--so now you not only have signficant congestion to deal with on either 880/680 but now you also have 3 miles of mostly residential areas being impacted by traffic flowing past their neighborhoods-

It maybe easier to acquire property and not have the headaches of PC/WS but what else does it offer? WS would be right next to a BART line--plus easy freeway access so it doesn't have any transportation advantages. The retail/housing opportunity around the park is now gone---I see zero advantages over either PC/WS---

What this says to me is that Fremont really is on life support and its time to give it up and move on. Time is money and right now it is wasting away--

Jeffrey said...

But I hit a home run at those softball fields once!!!!! That is a historical land mark?!?!?!?

Anonymous said...

Coming from the south bay I could stomach PC or WS recognizing that it was closer to get to than the Coliseum but still further away than I liked.

But now you are taking me into Central Fremont and adding how much time to my travel from the South Bay? More than I bet Wolff will accept. Since he couldn't be in San Jose (at the time) he wanted the ballpark as close as possible to capture the Silicon Valley dollars---pushing it into central Fremont will kill this idea all together-

If this is where the Fremont pols were headed to avoid PC/WS headaches I suspect that near-term Fremont will be put on the DL and San Jose will emerge as the front-runner.

La Boca said...

Anonymous and Jeffrey,

When you really think about it, the access points are not just from the two shown. Mission provides access from both 580 and 680 not to mention the historic Niles Canyon. Stevenson is not the only access point off of 880. You have Fremont North and South, not to mention Mowry as well as Stevenson. And then there's BART (remember $5 a gal?). What does all this mean? SEVERAL ACCESSS ROUTES which dilutes the draffic in any one area to below 1/4 - 1/6. Not to mention "incentivizing people to use public transit.

In addition, once the vehicles arrive from multiple directions they reach multiple parking areas in the CBD/downtown complementing business activity; what a concept?

As for the housing; the City is currently very much involved with encouraging housing in the downtown - though there are still those who belieave that a "downtown" doesn't need housing (?). Likewise, check on the City's WEB page to see there strategy for infill housing in Centerville, Irvington, and particularly the CBD.

Finnaly, if you check into the most cutting edge ball parks - they are now downtown.

As for your homerun Jeffrey, just think - you could tell your kids that you hit a home run there first!

Bottom line; this could finally make a real downtown - it's up to the people of Fremont (or it should be).

As I see it, it's not time for Fremont to give it up - it's time for Fremont to decide if they really want to create a central business district- a real downtown.

Marine Layer said...

It would typically take me 10 minutes from either the Mowry or Stevenson exits to Fremont BART or Paseo Padre on gamedays. Ballpark-related traffic would add to that time.

Transic said...

In a way, locating the ballpark in either PC or WS goes against the contemporary conventional wisdom of siting baseball stadia in areas of greater population density, such as a downtown. Perhaps it is reflective of the reality LW is faced with in NoCal. Who knows?

I think the idea presented should be looked at more closely. One would think that there has to be a site that has good access, is ready for development and doesn't cost a fortune somewhere in the East/South Bay.

OT
New developments in the Miami area:
http://www.miamiherald.com/416/story/874452.html
http://static.cbslocal.com/station/wfor/files/marlins.pdf
http://www.miamidade.gov/mayor/library/Baseball_Stadium_Agreements.pdf

Anonymous said...

An additonal 10 minutes without ballpark traffic--make it 30 plus with---

I completely support the concept of the ballpark being in a urban downtown environment but come on---downtown Fremont??

I also have a hard time believing that all of the existing neighborhoods around Central Park are going to welcome a ballpark anymore than WS did---at least WS is buffered by a large freeway--

While I am not suprised that Fremont is looking desperate, I am suprised that the A's haven't pulled the plug as this is casting a cloud over the A's that makes it seem as if no one knows what is going on....let's try another site and do another EIR and have the same NIMBY's ranting and raving...this is progress??

I have to believe that the reality is the A's have said to Fremont that they want to pull the plug and move on....and Fremont....in an act of desperation, is trying to keep them from moving on.

It is time that Fremont ackowledge that a ballpark won't work....but agree that the housing and retail at PC at some point in the future would be a nice addition---and than step out of the way.

Anonymous said...

Transic-

Have you been following the blog? The site you refer to is in downtown San Jose---parcel map posted by ML shows that the city has locked up all but 1 parcel and is negotiating to buy the last peice.

CAL Train, Light Rail, ACE, BART, HSR will be within a block or so walk of the proposed ballpark---you don't have to create an urban setting---it has one---that only continues to get better with the development of downtown high rise housing---and it also has a completed EIR for the ballpark---

Just what Wolff wants to do--lets start the whole site selection all over again and take another few years with another EIR at some place--when you have what you need---just need Fremont to step out of the way-

Marine Layer said...

Oh, I'd say Transic's been following from nearly the beginning.

Regarding the Marlins - I'm puzzled as to why the drawings were kept secret for so long. There's nothing new there.

Anonymous said...

Baltimore old Memorial Stadium had similar access issues, and was a nightmare for both neighbors and fans.

I don't see where all the parking would be either.

Transic said...

Anon 8:53

Yes, I have been aware of the San Jose proposal. I was just going with the assumption that LW is still focused on making it work in Fremont, as the blog has thoroughly explained.

The New Albanian said...

As an A's fan of 35 years who has always lived in Indiana, I just want to thank you for the information here. Great job.

Jeffrey said...

My only real problem with the site, being a non resident... is the idea that Fremont has a downtown in more than name is a joke. If your rationale is that the stadium will be close a "downtown" this is literally true, but actually false. There is no downtown Fremont. And I have been to this area frequently.

Anonymous said...

Lake Elizabeth/Central Park exists in Fremont because the lake overlies what was originally a sag pond - it is DIRECTLY over the Hayward Fault and that why that whole area couldn't be developed for housing to begin with. It's why the newish City Hall adjacent to this site has been abandoned for two decades - not long after it was built due to seismic safety and resulting in city depts scattered in various anonymous low rise office buildings all over town )

NoAsWS said...

Most residents have two simple questions:

Q: Do the Oakland A's really need to build the ballpark in Fremont?

Q: Does Fremont really need the Oakland A's baseball stadium?

Anonymous said...

Fremont is probably the largest city without a city hall;-(

Anonymous said...

i agree with anonymous 8:48 & NoAsWS,

the simple fact that marine has "heard" from a city worker that fremont has possibly come up with another location is the likely sign that fremont is getting desperate. fremont is not the only city that has land for a ballpark. i still believe that oakland will eventually get a chance to look for new areas to explore if and when the economy picks back up and the california budget crisis gets resloved. besides, who would build a ballpark in a residential area that's on top of the hayward fault line???

san jose will never happen due to territorial rights. i know some of you think that the commissioner can ultimately decide, but he won't allow that to happen. which is why he only said that he will allow the a's to talk to other communities. if he meant san jose, he would've said san jose. the bay area rivaly between the two teams has too much great history between to allow them to move over. think about it...would the a's be OK with the giants if they ever wanted to move to the east bay somewhere if the giants couldn't find a new ballpark location in sf somewhere??? no way and lew wolff would never allow that to happen as well!!

the bottom line is that lew wolff does not care for the city of oakland or the loyal fans that have watched the team win 4 championships over the last 40 years.

i say we wait it out a little longer and the a's will eventually end up building the ballpark near jack london or the port of oakland which there is still plenty of land.

Marine Layer said...

The powers-that-be in Fremont have not supported this concept and rejected it when it was first presented. This is not a case of Fremont scrambling for a solution. Both PC and WS were initially presented by the A's, not Fremont.

If, as you say, Wolff doesn't care for Oakland, why would he build there? Because Selig, who also doesn't care for Oakland, wants him to? Seriously.

Anonymous said...

lew wolff is only in oakland because he bought the team hoping that he could move them someplace else eventually. where else is he going to go at this point? the only time he ever goes to oakland is to watch his team play. other than that you will never find him anywhere near the city.

PC and WS being presented by the a's and NOT fremont is exactly my point regarind LW not wanting them in oakland. and yes...selig doesn't not care for oakland as well. that has always been the case.

MikeTeeVee said...

There are 10 soccer fields next to that site, which currently use up most or all of the available parking, often overflowing into the deaf school parking lot. The mock-up shows a big chunk of that parking being replaced with the ballpark.

Marine Layer said...

If Wolff bought the team only to move it out of Oakland, why would he build a new ballpark in Oakland? Construction costs and environmental review would be the same as anywhere else in the state.

Construction won't get cheaper than it is now and Wolff isn't getting any younger. To think that simply waiting around and hoping that something at JLS will open up is, frankly, tilting at windmills.

Anonymous said...

marine,

"If, as you say, Wolff doesn't care for Oakland, why would he build there?"

can you please tell us what has he ever built in oakland for his team since he bought it?? i'm gonna say nothing besides planning on moving them out of the city.

i think that was the point being made.

Marine Layer said...

You're arguing a point on which I am agreeing with you, anon. Wolff did his "due diligence" with Oakland then ran out the door.

Knowing this, why do you still harbor hope that something can be built in Oakland? You said they should wait, after all. Wolff's not selling. He enjoys being an owner far too much.

La Boca said...

All good points above. From what I hear Fremont has been wanting a "downtown" for over fifty years - since the original five townships came together and formed the "City" to halt a land grab from the north. Will it ever get one?

Approximately, eight years ago there was a long process to create the Central Business District Concept Plan. It was adopted by the Council - and the City has been trying to figure out a way to develop it ever since.

The CBD Concept Plan calls for a new pedestrian scale street with multiple PARKING GARAGES. Likewise, the Plan has one page that illustrates the amount of surface parking in the CBD - the parking in red, practically covers the page. The current "downtown" Fremont is a parking lagoon just waiting for patrons!

The Plan avoided the issue of housing in the CBD because the advisory panel was split. The mayor still doesn't think housing in the CBD is necessary.
However, the City is and has been in negotiations for years with various parties to build SEVERAL THOUSAND housing units and a concentrated "theme" retail street at a pedestrian scale (with aggregated parking structures). Sounds like Wolf's plan (in the right place)?

Your right about the original Park lands and the fault nearby. The fault actually runs under the old city hall site - but south west of the proposed site which is near or over the BART line (depending on an exact site) extension due to begin construction this year. The stadium would most certainly need to be built to standards for the area - it's far enough away to do so.

By the way; I think the original decision to buy the park land was not that it was worthless and that you couldn't build on it - I believe it was a genuine effort to preserve park and recreational space for the new city and for future generations (i.e. Jeffrey's homerun). Philanthropic foresight if you will.

As for parking, aside from the numerous under-utilized spaces in the CBD (which are closer that the original plan for Pacific Commons) there are several sites that could also accomadate parking. The old city hall site is basically a vacant parking lot; with it's close proximity to the site (next to the Police Department) it could be VIP parking for about 500 cars. Nearby Kaiser apparently has wanted to build a parking structure at the corner of Civic Center and Stevenson for years; that project could conceivably "piggy-back" (i.e. joint venture) with this project. The BART Board has been discussing a parking structure with Washington Hospital; this could also be built in tandem.

Considering that the City has been trying to figure out a way to implement the CBD Concept Plan - that calls for NUMEROUS parking garages - wouldn't it make sense to link those improvements with this project?

Maybe Fremont still isn't ready for a downtown. But can you imagine the views of the Lake with people strolling and Mission peak! With plenty of international dining nearby.

Of course, I'd be coming by BART to avoid paying all those parking cost to local merchants. (-;

Francisco said...

Wow, this is getting ridiculous. I don't see why they just don't stick to the original plan of having the new ballpark at the Pac Commons site. There is so much potential at that location and the A's just need to give Costco, Lowes and Kohls a bigger slice of the pie. There is plenty of open space there. The main concern is ofg course the potential congestion it would cause on 880. The key IMO is that there is a truck stop weigh station going both NORTH AND SOUTH on the 880 that is located right where an off ramp should be located to get to the stadium parking.

I believe the city should plead get convert the weigh station coming from the North on 880 into an off ramp so the folks who drive from the North can get off at that particular exit. So then there would be two exits to get off on to get to the stadium coming from the North. Automall and the weigh station exit. It would certainly help. Plus there must be big shuttle services that would shuttle fans from Fremont Bart and eventually Irvington and Warm Springs Bart stations to the ballpark.

Dan said...

Ok not to harp too badly on the author, but this will happen about 5 minutes after hell freezes over. Too far from BART, too far from freeways, WAY too close to too much residential and too limited arterial road access. Stevenson and Mission are only 4 lane roads that are currently as big as they can get and are already over crowded.

Anonymous said...

The best " view " from a ballpark of the three Fremont sites is at Pacific Commons , bar none. Just to the west is protected wetlands with wide open SF Bay vistas to the peninsula, South Bay , the waters of the bay and glorious sunsets behind the Santa Cruz Mtn range panning from Brisbane to the Santa Lucia area of Carmel Valley . Imagine those opening shots from atop Cisco Field at PC with TV cameras scanning across that view while announcer voiceovers : " welcome to another Major League Baseball game between the " " A's and the NY Yankees from Fremont California . And then as they fade to or back from commercials they'd show tenants sitting on rooftop apartment/condo bleachers a la Wrigley Field across the street or street scenes from the big plaza surrounding the " Santana Row " -like shopping district just beyond the open centerfield area .



Imagine the same at WS : " from Fremont CA home of the NUMMI plant you see there across the street there where your Pontiac Vibes and Toyota Tacomas are built
I wonder which image would enhance nationwide image of Fremont ?inglabi

Anonymous said...

I guess that PC advocates still believe that Wolff has only identified WS as his primary focus in order to get leverage over Catellus and the big retailers for future negotiations. If this was his objective than the strategy has failed completely as WS sounds as if it would be much more challenging than PC which Wolff has now ruled out for a baseball stadium (he still would like to put housing and retail there).

The latest proposal for Central Park is ridiculous---yes I can see from a Fremont pro-ballpark resident why they might like it but beyond that the challenges make both PC and WS look like a walk in the park- and from Wolff's perspective--there are no advantages to placing a ballpark in "downtown" Fremont.

Be interesting to see what Wolff says when he addresses the San Jose Chamber of Commerce on February 11th--

doug said...

On September 9, 2006, I helped put on the opening event for Fremont’s 50th Anniversary celebration at Central Park. It was called Hands Around the Lake. We needed 2,700 participants in order to have the numbers required to ring the entire lake. The city was very, very concerned about that many people showing up all at one time in the center of the city. Now you’re talking about 32,000?! Need I say more? Don’t think so.

Francisco said...

Anonymous,

Yeah there isn't enough land in the Warm Springs location as well. The Central Park idea would never happen. To close to residential homes and the traffic around Mission and Stevenson would be insane!

The views from the Pac Commons site location would be great and Mission Peak would also offer great scenary as well.

The key IMO is to convert that North bound weigh station into an off ramp that will lead to the ballpark. Then there would actually be three ways to get o the ballpark coming from 880 North bound towards the south. Automall, Potential Weigh Station Exit and then the Cushing/Mission Exit that is being renovated as we speak to address traffic concerns. Another key is set up convenient and efficient Shuttle transport services and shuttle lanes for BART patrons coming into Fremont and then eventually the Irvington and Warm Springs stations.

Marine Layer said...

Converting the weigh station will be difficult, because it's under the jurisdiction of Caltrans and CHP. It doesn't get used much anymore so there's that. It might be difficult to get the state to share it because there will be maintenance costs associated with its use for the baseball village. I wouldn't expect the state to give up the weigh station either.

Francisco said...

Marin Layer,

Yes, thats what I figured in regards to the weigh station state property, but it's not even used heavily if at all right now.

The state should be cutting that South bound weigh station from the state budget IMO. Or perhaps the A's can make a deal with the state to take over the weigh station site?

That weigh station is just wasting state money by just sitting there barely being oprational IMO.

La Boca said...

Funny thing; only one of the three alternative locations in Fremont has the land secured (i.e., already owned by the City).

Guess which one?

Anonymous said...

anon 2:24 wrote :

Funny thing; only one of the three alternative locations in Fremont has the land secured (i.e., already owned by the City).

Guess which one?"

Well that would pretty much rule out City of Fremont's Central Park for this " privately financed stadium " , then huh. Why would Fremont citizens give away their land to a group of millionaire developers ? If you say " they can sell it to LW ", then citizens will demand market price at which point LW might as well use the best site for future housing/entertainment and retail /stadium - which they already control through outright purchase the past 2 years and Cisco lease assumption for total of 225 acres at PC .

Anonymous said...

The best backdrop available for an A's ballpark can be found in Oakland. The new span of the Bay Bridge will be state of the art and would've offered a tremendous backdrop for the A's if Wolff had possessed an ounce of foresight and patience. Wetlands and phony brownstones don't capture the grit that has characterized the A's franchise. Too wimpy. Wolff is a carpetbagger and the politicians of Fremont are poachers. Neither cares about the A's and their fans.

MikeTeeVee said...

Fremont used to have July 4th fireworks at Central Park, but canceled them several years ago. I think the reason to cancel them boiled down to the crowds being bigger than the city was equipped to handle. I remember traffic leaving after the fireworks was basically gridlocked.

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:07

At some point when the A's have a new stadium in either Fremont WS or Downtown San Jose the majority of A's fan's like myself will thank Lew Wolff for sticking it out in the Bay Area and making it happen rather than re-locating to another area---an opportunity that Bud Selig heartly endorsed not too long ago.

I don't see too many businesses rushing to make Oakland their home-to characterize Wolff as a carpet bagger for making a sound business decision is ridiculous. The San Jose A's are a hell of alot better than Charlotte, Portland or Vegas--

Marine Layer said...

A ballpark with a view of the Bay Bridge would be facing west, which is a no-no for MLB unless batters suddenly desire getting struck out while admiring the sunset over the city. BTW, to get that fantastic view of the new span, the stadium would have to face exactly west from Oakland since the cable-stayed portion is at the foot of YB Island. The rest of it is a simple skyway with no adornment.

La Boca said...

According to information on the Fremont Festival of Arts Web page over 400,000 visitors came to "downtown" Fremont in 2007 over a weekend. Two blocks from the Park!

And Anon; regarding the City already owning the land, it's true that the City would need to be compensated for the use and/or sale of it (and the CBD would make money). Maybe the City should just lease it to Wolff since stadiums only last about 30 years.

That doesn't sound like a public subsidy - but public benefit. Most literature about how stadiums don't make money refer to the pay-back on public money.

Anonymous said...

Having owned a Fremont business in the central business district just half a block away from the Hub shopping center for 15 years and now located at Pacific Commons the past 5 years , I can tell you there is a huge difference in daily traffic flow . The Hub /CBD area bounded by Mowry,Paseo Padre/Fremont Blvd /Stevenson is congested all the time because it is a true crossroads of people coming/going to work/home. Pacific Commons has basically NO passby traffic except straight down Cherry/Boyce/Cushing for the Newrak/Ardenwood and peninsula people trying to bypass 88o. Traffic on AutoMall dead ends just a couple blocks past the car dealerships . The only reason Fremont residents go to PC is Costco, not Kohls, not the nearly always empty Lowes. There is no incidental pass by shopping traffic . So putting something at CBD will not work as it is congested all the time. That is why PC has not been successful.It's a "dead end" physically and mentally for all Tri_City resiednets . Ballppark Village, Sanatan-Row-like shopping and theaters , stadium changes EVERYTHING there .

La Boca said...

Anon,

Forgive me - but I think you make the point why the "infill development" in the CBD does make sense.

Especially, when linked with "multi-model" and "park once" strategies to accomodate inevitable growth (i.e., Transit Oriented Development)...

La Boca said...

Anon,

I think you make the point why the "in-fill development" in the CBD make sense!

Especially, when you consider linking this in-fill development with "multi-modal" and "park-once" strategies to accomodate the city's inevitable growth (i.e., Transit Oriented Development around BART) while preserving neighborhoods.

Anonymous said...

So Anon 4:43--if PC is dead all the time other than Costco why is Kohl's and Lowe's putting up road blocks to building a stadium and ultimately at some point--housing and retail---it would seem to me that they would be chomping at the bit to increase density and people in this area to support their own investments. I realize baseball patrons aren't going to shop at Kohl's before and after a game but the people who would have bought th condo's as well as making this a destination point would have proved valuable--what's behind their objection if it isn't traffic?

Francisco said...

People...don't be pissed at Wolff for not "trying" to get a deal done in Oakland. Oakland is too cheap and has bigger problems than asking citizens to try and get a ballpark done in Oakland. The city politicians and officials haven't made any effort.

It's better to have the A's move to Fremont and stay local instead of having to move to Sacramento or even out of the state.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:37 wrote :

"if PC is dead all the time other than Costco why is Kohl's and Lowe's putting up road blocks to building a stadium and ultimately at some point--housing and retail---it would seem to me that they would be chomping at the bit to increase density and people in this area to support their own investments. I realize baseball patrons aren't going to shop at Kohl's before and after a game but the people who would have bought th condo's as well as making this a destination point would have proved valuable--what's behind their objection if it isn't traffic?
"
Ever since Catellus ( and their prev PC mgrs such as Dan and Sean ) was purchased by Colorado based ProLogis , I have not been impressed with their oversight of PC. I think they treat it more like what they mainly do : knock up biz parks and such .
Take away the In n Out Burger and the Costco and there would be NO business there- thank goodness I don't own a retail biz - they are all dead quiet 365 days a year. If anyone has ever seen more than 5 customers in the whole Lowes at one time, tell me - as I am in there all the time . But Kohls and Lowes mgs on the other side of the country don't have a clue what a NET bonanza the development would be for their stores . So what if there is game day traffic 80 days a year - their parking lots are empty now ( after being open for 4-5 years !) so what diff does it make , LOL?

La Boca said...

What a great discussion everyone! Thank you Marine Layer.

As it was once said; "the backbone of a strong democracy - is an informed citizenry!"

"Long live the BLOG!"

Alan Stirling said...

I dont want to be rude, but has this guy lost his mind? A stadium doesnt belong anywhere in Fremont but this suggestion cant be serious. And close to "downtown"? What downtown? This must be a humorous attempt to show how ridiculous the concept of stadiums in Fremont is. And for that, I applaud the author.

La Boca said...

Alan,

It's no joke; and no, this guy hasn't lost his mind.

You remind me of the old saying that - "there are three kinds of people in the world; those that make things happen - those that watch things happen - and those that don't know what's happening!"

Furthermore, the only thing that doesn't change in life (and cities) - is change. Surely you must be old enough to know that Al?

For example; where and how DO YOU propose to put the next forty thousand people projected to be living in Fremont by 2030? I know, you don't want them to come; but urban planners have to deal with such problems (along with where to put stadiums - and reduce oil consumption and greenhouse gases at the same time).

You should avail yourself to the entire discussion that has been taking place here and over on Matt's Blog at the Argus to see that this discussion is indeed very real.

As I see it Al; if the only thing that doesn't change is change - you can either get out in front of that change and direct it, or it will run you over.

If you don't want a stadium or the A's in Fremont, then so be it.

HOWEVER, if the discussion is where would be the best place to put the A's stadium (and all the housing and retail with it) if they are going to be in Fremont - then do your homework Al.

Urban downtown ballparks - LINKED TO TRANSIT make sense! And as mentioned above; they can contribute to the vitality of an downtown.

Here I agree with you Al; Fremont doesn't have one - YET!

Anonymous said...

Seriously, this whole thing is a discussion based on BS. People who work in the planning field thought this was a crazy "are you out of your mind" idea. La Boca (aka Jim) are you assuming the public is to stupid to not figure out this is a bad idea. Why are you suggesting building a massive stadium in the middle of a beautiful park, across the street from 2 special needs schools, on streets that are already crowded and the list can go on. You are too self absorbed to see that people weren't trying to block your idea, they were trying to keep you from looking like an idiot. Good job on losing all the respect you had.

La Boca said...

Anon; 9:37 AM

You might be surprised who in the planning field (and City) do think that this is a very reasonable idea that should be discussed and analyzed. In fact, under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) exploring reasonable alternatives is required.

As for the “crazy” part; I think the discussion above and over at the New A’s Ballpark Blog prove that people have for the most part not reacted that way. Rather it has been a long overdue discussion of the trade-offs of three alternative locations - two of which connect with BART.

As for my being “too self absorbed” - I am absorbed in promoting a public participatory process for the people of Fremont on such an important issue for the future of Fremont.

Unfortunately, the tone and tenor of your post above is all to reflective of the top management within the City which is not committed to a transparent public process.

Again, let the people of Fremont decide if and where they want the A’s and a Ballpark Village. Frankly, I think they’re now beginning to have the discussion that they deserve and will be better informed on the important trade-offs on the big issues facing Fremont - like whether they want a CBD and where the next forty thousand people over the next twenty years are going to go.

The attempt to stifle discussion on this process of siting the A’s is no different than the previous and ongoing attempts by city management to stifle a transparent process on the Centerville site, Capital Avenue plan - and/or obfuscating the loss and importance of industrial lands in Pacific Commons.

Anonymous said...

At the end of the day , it's what the DiNapoli and Fisher, etc., families who provide the $$$ that their front man LW -who is assigned the task of dodging public flak for them - who will demand that whatever is done must further line their families' already deep pockets the most - that will determine where a ballpark ( what the fan cares about ) will be built, whether Fremont, San Jose, Alcatraz ....as exchange for some kind of sweet real estate deal ( what they care about ).

Anonymous said...

Anon-

I can agree with you that business benefits will help to drive the location--but also recognize that there is sometimes just a tad bit of community loyalty that helps to drive location also. The Di Napoli's were big players back in the early '90's to lure the Giants to San Jose---with the team being located out on 237 (horrible choice) there wasn't alot of business benefit that I recall other than to have baseball in the South Bay and expand San Jose's name recognition and entertainment venues-

NoAsWS said...

La Boca, under CEQA, only the “No Project Alternative” is mandatory. They could consider “scale down” or “off-site” alternatives, but NOT REQUIRED.

La Boca said...

Thank you for the correction NoAsWs.

Anonymous said...

Central Park is a better location than Warm Springs. They should move the stadium closer to Lake Elizabeth and make a "Wasserman Cove" that big hitters can hit into.

Its estimated that up to 10,000 cars will enter and exit the stadium area each game. At 20 feet per car length that would be 37miles of bumper to bumper cars to deal with. Pacific Commons is best to handle that level of traffic, and Warm Springs would be gridlock.
Go Steelers!

Anonymous said...

A Lake Elizabeth/Central Park Stadium can easily handle the traffic. Last years Fremont Art Festival located 1/2 mile from the park over two days brought in close to 375,000 people. The stadium will hold less than ten percent of that at 32,000 fans. Lake Elizabeth is close to Bart at 1/2 mile. They could build a walk way along Bart to the stadium or one of those moving walkways like at SFO. Central Park is Warmer, family oriented, close to the new Water Park, has city services such as the police station, and established restaraunts which would like the business. Pacific Commons has a bunch of whiners. Warm Springs would be no better than Oakland and likely far worse from jam packed traffic along 680 and in front of Frys.

Anonymous said...

Lake Elizabeth /Central Park area is new and all built out - not a redevelopment zone .Continuing to blog about that site is comic relief , I guess.
If you see what this family does , you'd know why the 225 acres greenfield site (raw land) they and the other investors control through LW at Pacific Commons - and importantly far away from any existing "NIMBY" home development BTW - is ideal for them. Why do you think Cotsco ,etc were allowed to be built there ? No nearby whiny homeowners .

http://www.dinco.com/default.htm

La Boca said...

Did I hear "stifle"?

Stifle
Stifle can mean:

To suffocate
To prevent from speaking or to prevent a view being heard. See free speech, gag and gagging.
A stifle is also the name for an animal's knee joint. See stifle joint.

"Stifle yourself," or simply "Stifle!" was a frequent remark made by Archie Bunker on the 1970s sitcom All in the Family, most often to his long-winded wife Edith.

La Boca said...

Credits for definition to Wikipedia.

Anonymous said...

I've said it before but Fremont leadership should have been more candid and proactive about the resistance from PC anchors. IMHO, PC was the ONLY option in Fremont but it was doomed without a plan to address transportation to the new WS BART station. I think this problem might have been solved but the "The City" failed to think about this in their PC plans and got blindsided by the opposition to PC who also knew that WS and Central are CRAZY ideas that would never fly. The City needs to get REAL and stop spinning their wheels and ours on this lost cause. They say 'it ain't over till it's over'...but Fremont A's are OVER.

Anonymous said...

They are proposing the stadium almost on top of the Hayward fault. You can physically see the fault line in Central Park. Look at the curb lines.

La Boca said...

Actually yes; I think you can see cracks in the curb and road on Civic Center Drive just east of Stevenson. The fault cracks seem to line-up with the empty fault easement behind the Archstone Apartments (aka; The Benton) which were constructed recently.

However, the Central Park site for the stadium shown in the montage is quite a ways away. In fact the Police Department, Library, Kaiser and Washington Hospital are all closer to the fault line. Not to mention that the BART extension is being designed to go over the fault line?

For planning purposes there is the actual fault line and then there is a fifty foot "fault trace zone" on either side the the actual fault where building is restricted.

Current building technologies are more that capable of dealing with designing a stadium for the location shown in the photo montage.

Anonymous said...

La Boca wrote :

"Current building technologies are more that capable of dealing with designing a stadium for the ( fault line ) location shown in the photo montage"

Yeah, for an extra ,say $50M-$100M in reinforcement and laying caissons down to bedrock,etc.

La Boca said...

The Bay Area as a whole is a challenging place to build; including "Bay-fill."

Again, it is not over the "fault line."

Francisco said...

This just aggravates me.

The best spot for the A's to build the stadium is the Pacific Commons site and they should just try and work something out there. Costco is stupid if they are against a ballpark there. The people who wanto tailgate will be going there for their supplies and food for cryin out loud!

Plenty of open space land there no residential whiners and the team and citry should just offer shuttle services from the future Warm Springs BART station.

Having a Ballpark at Lake Elizabeth and Warm Springs over a GREAT site like the Pacific Commons site?

Unreal.....

Francisco said...

Anonymous said...
Having owned a Fremont business in the central business district just half a block away from the Hub shopping center for 15 years and now located at Pacific Commons the past 5 years , I can tell you there is a huge difference in daily traffic flow . The Hub /CBD area bounded by Mowry,Paseo Padre/Fremont Blvd /Stevenson is congested all the time because it is a true crossroads of people coming/going to work/home. Pacific Commons has basically NO passby traffic except straight down Cherry/Boyce/Cushing for the Newrak/Ardenwood and peninsula people trying to bypass 88o. Traffic on AutoMall dead ends just a couple blocks past the car dealerships . The only reason Fremont residents go to PC is Costco, not Kohls, not the nearly always empty Lowes. There is no incidental pass by shopping traffic . So putting something at CBD will not work as it is congested all the time. That is why PC has not been successful.It's a "dead end" physically and mentally for all Tri_City resiednets . Ballppark Village, Sanatan-Row-like shopping and theaters , stadium changes EVERYTHING there .

1/28/09 4:43 PM



^^^^I agree to a certain extent but the PC area is not as dead as you think. PF CHANGS and Claim Jumpers is always packed, and they have a pizza shop in there that offers great deals on pizza and is always busy. The new Italian restaurant is busy as well and business starting locating to the PC site because they were thinking ahead and were fully expecting the ballpark to built nearby which would stimulate the whole PC retail area.

The PC area is the best location and the only reason it is not getting done is because Wolff isn't throwing around his "influence" enough to the neighboring PC business's and the city.

Someone wants a bigger piece of the pie if the ballpark is going to be built on the PC site.

He doesn't have anything to do with traffic....it's about who is going to benefit and make some money out of it! Period!

Greed....again...