05 November 2009

West Oakland murmurs

I'll start off with a brief chunk from Chip Johnson's Tuesday column.
And even though she is among the first 200 residents to live at Central Station, mere rumors about A's owner Lew Wolff sniffing around Middle Harbor for a new ballpark site have her already concerned about growth.
Area residents don't need me to point out where Middle Harbor is. For those who aren't familiar, it's the westernmost end of West Oakland. Geographically it's situated between the Bay Bridge to the north and the old Alameda Naval Air Station to the south.

I'm curious to see if a ballpark proposal has Middle Harbor as the site. Ever since the military closed up shop there, a combination of business (port expansion) and environmental efforts (wetlands regeneration) has been the ongoing concern. It's hard to say where a ballpark could go or what a plan would entail. West Oakland BART is over a mile 2 miles away and around Middle Harbor the train line descends before becoming the Transbay Tube, making a new station a tall order. And there's the worry that the area is in Nancy Nadel's district, and she's well known for not putting the A's anywhere on her priority list.

Still, I'd like to see if there's anything to this, if for no other reason than to see what opportunities are out there.