It’s official. It’s In-N-Out coming to Alameda Landing’s drive-thru parcel, I mean “entry site.” But in addition to In-N-Out the parcel will be rounded out with a Chase Bank and the Safeway Gas Station which we all knew was coming since there was that whole Safeway wants a gas station thing. Look, the whole entry site is turning out to be a little low rent, but honestly, given the difficulty of actually getting into that site, it’s amazing that they were able to get anyone interested in it at all. I mean, when Catellus first sold this as a drive-thru development they really knew their market. All of the retailers are of the drive thru variety, except I guess some people do actually eat at In-N-Out.
So here’s the general plan. Everyone knows where they are right? At the top is Webster, bottom is Stargell. In-N-Out will be at the, um, rounded tip. The Safeway gas will be closest to the Safeway.
A few things. It looks like they are not planning on adding a pedestrian cross walk at the across Stargell at Webster which is a complete mistake. No one. I mean no one is going to walk all the way down to Stargell and Mariner Square Loop to cross and then walk back to the In-N-Out. It just is not going to happen. Without the addition of a safe pedestrian crossing, I think we’re probably going to see an uptick in accidents between cars and pedestrians trying to access the entry site to go to In-N-Out and probably even the Safeway kiosk for snacks. Let’s remember that the College of Alameda is right across the street and assuming that everyone will come from the Stargell and Mariner Square Loop intersection is simply shortsighted.
Also, the City, and Catellus I think, need to consider the greater impact of the Alameda Landing project and this entry project on the approach to Alameda Landing. Now the City has already floated plans to make a cut through bike path on Neptune Park. For those who have no idea where Neptune Park is, it’s that big piece of land near Independence Plaza and where all the flags are around the Tubes. Long story short, I had to walk from the Lucky’s shopping center to go home (using Stargell) and the pedestrian access from Lucky’s to Stargell is pretty crappy. Here’s what the proposal looks like:
But can you see how lame the cross walks are on the Constitution side of things. Right now there aren’t a lot of pedestrians using that particular path. But to get from the Lucky’s shopping center to that parcel you have to cross two streets just to double back the way you came if you don’t want to get run over. Given that is a weirdly metered intersection anyway creating a direct route for pedestrians (controlled by a button) would make a lot of sense and wouldn’t require a weirdly meandering bike path. But this is much less important than the pedestrian cross walk across Stargell at Webster.
And before someone complains about traffic, there is a traffic study and it is here. Weirdly there is a suggestion to add another dedicated left hand turn lane on Mariner Square Loop on to Stargell heading toward Webster. I’m not sure why it would be necessary and there is no real explanation either so I hope someone will ask about that. Here’s the site recommendation plan from the Traffic study people. It looks like the drive-thru queue for In-N-Out at 14 stacked is going to be much too short given the lines I’ve seen for In-N-Out drive-thrus.
What you’ve all been waiting for, but honestly, there’s nothing surprising about these, the renderings of the elevations. I mean, these literally could be in Anywhere, USA:
But here is something that someone might like, entry signs. One even says “Welcome to Alameda”!
So to sum up. Yay In-N-Out, but the access stuff needs some work. This is before the Planning Board on Monday, but the final vote won’t be until July 8. Reps from all the businesses should be there, so this would be a good time to, ahem, grill (rim shot) them if you like.
Oh and the opinion came back in the Ann Marie Gallant appeals case, the court essentially said the lower court was wrong and kicked the case back. I’ll have more info on that next week, but wanted to give you all a heads up.