Blogging Bayport Alameda

June 26, 2013

Crosswalk section

Filed under: Alameda, Alameda Landing, Business, Development — Tags: , — Lauren Do @ 6:06 am

So here, I’m just going to say it.   I don’t agree with anything that any of my Bayport neighbors said at the Planning Board meeting on Monday night.   At all.   In fact, I’m a little embarrassed by the xenophobic comments that elicited not one, but two Planning Board members to chastise the speakers.    It saddens me more than anything else.   I can handle concerns about traffic, I can handle concerns about liquor licenses, I can handle concerns about late night operating hours.   But what I can’t handle are suggestions about “people from outside Alameda” as code for undesirables and disparaging remarks about homeless people.  What I can’t handle is people who conflate a random crime spree with businesses that are in the nascent planning stages.

Also, I would appreciate if people from Bayport would stop talking about Bayport as though we are one monolithic unit that feels the same way, because I do not endorse what was said last night by my neighbors.

So I’m going to leave it at that, because, shit, I still have to live here.

I will make one comment though as to people who think that In-N-Out will not make an appropriate “gateway” welcome sign.   Right now, it’s a weedy vacant lot.   I think that is even less of an appropriate gateway welcome.   But in general, there needs to be work on the screening through landscaping.

Anywho. Let me just say I was pretty underwhelmed by Catellus’ solution to possible jaywalking by saying that they would just put a row of hedges up. I understand that City staff has said they are going to be working on talking to CalTrans about a crosswalk at Stargell and Webster.   Here’s the intersection that CalTrans (and apparently some folks) are afraid will get backed up in the tube if a stop light is placed there with a button trigger for pedestrians.


On the Oakland side, here is a similar set up, which does back up occasionally, but honestly, it’s not a big deal.


Another look:


There is a flashing yellow light (meaning proceed with caution) when the pedestrian button is pushed, the light turns red with a big “No Turn on Red” sign allowing pedestrians to cross safely.   If this can be managed for the Oakland side, I’m not sure why it would be a big deal on the Alameda side.   This would also serve to slow down the traffic through the Stargell curve.   The Stargell curve is a suggested 15 MPH turn so people should be easing on the acceleration anyway or starting to break once they merge into those right most lanes.

Planning Board member Michael Henneberry made a good point about the population of folks that Catellus is looking to stop jaywalking will be in good physical shape (aka young) and a few hedges won’t stop them from their end goal of a Double Double.

Also, a big concern was about the liquor license that was requested by the Safeway kiosk.   I’m agnostic about the liquor license, but it sounds like the consensus of the Planning Board was that they were probably going to deny it which would be compatible with their decision on the 76 gas station kiosk on Webster when that project wanted a liquor license as well.


  1. Captain Renault: I’m shocked, shocked to find that elitism is going on in here!

    Welcome to Alameda, Lauren. They walk among us and they are everywhere (and I’m not talking about the “outsiders”).

    Comment by Denise Shelton — June 26, 2013 @ 6:35 am

  2. A crosswalk is absolutely essential. I say this as one of those drifters and n’er do wells who actually walks places instead of hopping into the SUV every time I need a quart of milk or a quick lunch. What a bunch of maroons!

    Comment by Denise Shelton — June 26, 2013 @ 6:39 am

  3. ‘Maroons’? After the scolding by her Correctness, you attempt to disparage drivers by the color of their skin. And, just how many times a lifetime do you n’er do wells from the east expect to punch pedestrian buttons in the west?

    Comment by Jack Richard — June 26, 2013 @ 7:42 am

  4. Could someone please elaborate on the weekend crime spree?

    Comment by jsanders128 — June 26, 2013 @ 7:50 am

  5. I appreciate the comments made by the Bayport residents. It was nice to hear from them. I was touched by one resident who was visably upset when telling the planning board of a burglar that actually kicked down the door while a family was inside their home. I appreciate the compassion and caring of the planning board members who listened to the residents. Sometimes its time to just listen, and I think this was one of those times.

    Regarding the gateway – years ago I had a very important discussion with a developer friend about Webster Street. He said the problem with Webster Street is that there are too many fast food restaurants which will make it difficult to attract investment to the area. That developer friend is a commercial developer with years of experience in the commercial and retail market.

    It’s very important that we think beyond one development or one developer or one hamburger joint — this is a very important gateway to the West End of Alameda.

    The gateway needs to be seen as a marketing corridor to the rest of Alameda and all future development on the West End. Future home buyers for Alameda Point, Encinal Terminals, Marina Cove 11, and Del Monte will be coming through that tube. It needs to be welcoming with large trees and a sign that says something like ‘Alameda — a City of Homes and Beaches’ – with directional signs to the Jean Sweeney Open Preserve, Crown Beach, Crab Cove, the historic Webster Street Business District, Alameda Point, Encinal Terminals, Del Monte, etc.

    This is bigger than In and Out — this is about our only gateway to the West End of Alameda.

    Comment by Karen Bey — June 26, 2013 @ 7:51 am


    Comment by frank — June 26, 2013 @ 7:52 am

  7. 2. and 6. I had no idea that there was a racially charged meaning to the word “maroon”. Who knew Bugs Bunny was a racist? Mea culpa.

    Comment by Denise Shelton — June 26, 2013 @ 8:14 am

  8. In my defense, note the no. 1 definition in Urban Dictionary:

    Good, God! Am I to be the Paula Deen of Alameda? Say it ain’t so. (I do really like butter and bacon, though.)

    Comment by Denise Shelton — June 26, 2013 @ 8:21 am

  9. REF: 8 — As if mispronouncing “moron” is any better. Oh, dear. I’m in a hole. I’d better stop digging.

    Comment by Denise Shelton — June 26, 2013 @ 8:23 am

  10. I am more familiar with the term “ultramaroon”:
    Denise, maybe you should use that one. It has no racial connotations.

    Comment by vigi — June 26, 2013 @ 9:59 am

  11. Lauren ,
    Alameda and City hall have a very long history in portraying negative image of business in which they are not familiar to stop them from coming in .
    it is a club you belong to it or you do not , and I do not .
    This remind Me of the countless hearing about Trader Joe which I am a Customer since 1978…. the best comment from these peoples was : they are a merchant of opportunity not a real retailer like JC Penney ,Mervyns Lucky and Safeway …..the 3 first one are out of business , so much for normal retailers and the last one was forced to upgrade as Trader Joe was here to satisfy the peoples who had other experience other food than macaroni and cheese or spam , interestingly Trader’sJoe does not need South shore , South Shore need them.
    It also remind me of several small businesses attempting to open , one went almost bankrupt trying to do so.
    Another one the plans were lost for months a the time He finally got the permit {another juicy story}
    As far as In and Out , being their Customer also since 1978 or there about they are oriented toward fresh food , our leaders are used to frozen burger made somewhere in the USA from meat of unknown origin , one has simply to travel to Rohnert park , there are 2 fast food joints facing each other , one Mac Donald and one In and Out there is an endless line at In and Out , an almost empty restaurant at Mc Donald if they did not have Chinese toys for the kids they would be empty. , the same can be said in Sunnyvale and all over the place …
    People are City hall have shown their lack of logic when they allowed 1/2 dozen restaurant of the very same type within 2 blocks “frozen yogurt” , mowing down fully grown tree , making bus stop right on the corner on Webster we have all seen the Drivers trying to dock there and the list goes on …..

    We should all show our “trust” of this and public work dept as they fall under their umbrella .
    Our fine Director is the one who signed off on the tree mowing , the same one that cry foul this year about the new overpass on 23rd street being a single lane when it has been on the book for years at Caltran , If you have weed only at the entry of Alameda , He is the only one to blame as He sanitized the Public work in a very sneaky way , eliminating anyone daring to question his judgement , the old timers have stopped counting at 60 the numbers of Employees which were forced out in one way or the other at every levels , nothing to do with budget , it was not on the table then ….
    By the way if you still believe The former Fire Chief was the only one self serving at the City gas station you are dreaming , it goes this way , they have a card goes in the reader one vehicle is filled , leave the card and a second one is also filled and a third one , according to some working the department at time the line is longer than at “safeway”
    And finally , Because everyone should be aware of it , the City has officially turned over to Roto rooter “”the absolute most expensive sewer line cleaners””” to eliminate a couples of Employees which by the way are polyvalent ,
    A memo has been issued the City “roto rooter” will have the first call free , “tree roots” then after that it will be at the Home owner expense , for tree none of us have planted , and none of us are allow to trim and cut . Some have found creative way to eliminate the trees by removing the bark at the base X broaway and encinal or drilling holes injecting ??? regent x encinal south side left …..

    Someone need to look a bit closer at what is really going on there , it is not the Guys and Gals working , the management .

    Comment by mijoka — June 26, 2013 @ 10:53 am

  12. That intersection in Oakland coming out of the tube is a disaster. You always see seniors haplessly waiting to cross there. Hardly anyone stops and yields for them coming out of the tube at high speed.

    Comment by Hit and Run — June 26, 2013 @ 12:03 pm

  13. “It saddens me more than anything else.”

    Well dear me, all the pontificating about the racist taint in Historic Alameda has come full circle and ended up as an addendum Part IV to Part I,II and III of the smug laden exposition series denigrating the past and has been found to be current and commingling right smack dab behind the those precious castle walls. The Progressive veneer hiding behind those walls must be no thicker than an empty wallet or a maroon skin.

    One wonders what a future exposé scribed by a future Re will make of 2013 Alameda tolerance fifty years from now.

    Comment by Jack Richard — June 26, 2013 @ 6:39 pm

  14. Just like people in Bayport should be mindful about ascribing their beliefs to their neighbors, one shouldn’t (and by “one” I mean Jack R.) assume that everyone who lives in Bayport is “progressive” by whatever definition you have for “progressive.”

    Comment by Lauren Do — June 27, 2013 @ 5:46 am

  15. So what exactly was so offensive about these comments? Specific examples?

    Comment by dave — June 27, 2013 @ 5:51 am

  16. To point out specifics would be to do what I was trying to avoid initially which is start to break down the comments of my neighbors. It’s worth a listen if you’re interested, about 50 minutes of public comments, so on the shorter side when it comes to semi-controversial agenda items. Since neither vigi nor John P. live in my neighborhood, they might be more inclined to offer specific examples.

    Comment by Lauren Do — June 27, 2013 @ 5:58 am

  17. The first three episodes painted the whole city as racist based on a few letters and some police chatter. So why can’t one assume everyone in BP thinks alike, after all they have a lot more in common with each other than with the rest of the city.

    Comment by Jack Richard — June 27, 2013 @ 7:43 am

  18. Or perhaps you are being overly sensitive to a look back at a period of Alameda history that a lot of newcomers (like me) weren’t aware of.

    Comment by Lauren Do — June 27, 2013 @ 7:56 am

  19. I guess what I found astounding is that the Bayport Bigot Brigade [BBB?] who got up to speak at that meeting were comparatively young, & had only lived here since 2005 or less. Some only for 1-2 years. And they were already threatening to move away, if they didn’t get their way. Well, OK by me.
    That would argue that Bayport Alameda may be attracting new racists/xenophobes, not that xenophobia is attributable to old farts lurking around town. I would also say that any California city in existence before WW2 undoubtedly has its share of historical racism.

    Comment by vigi — June 27, 2013 @ 10:02 am

  20. What was specifically racist about their comments?

    Comment by dave — June 27, 2013 @ 10:16 am

  21. Vigi – they were threatening to move away because they were concerned about a drop in property values. They pay significantly more in taxes than many of us, including Mello Roos assessments and homeowner dues so I think they have the right to have their voices heard. Many of them spent a million dollars or more for their homes.

    Considering folks over in your neighborhood fought to keep Target out their back yard – I hardly think it’s fair to criticize Bayport homeowners for being concerned about some of the same issues folks on your side of town were concerned about.

    Comment by Karen Bey — June 27, 2013 @ 10:36 am

  22. Just where do you think “my neighborhood” is, Karen? I don’t live in the Willows. And the Willows is not an enclosed community with sound walls. Its exposure to South Shore is more intense than Bayport’s is to the Landing.

    Comment by vigi — June 27, 2013 @ 11:16 am

  23. Vigi – “It’s exposure to Shouth Shore is more intense than Bayport is to the Landing”

    That’s debatable, but my point is that residents fight to protect their neighborhoods and property values all over Alameda. Bayport is no different.

    Comment by Karen Bey — June 27, 2013 @ 11:36 am

  24. Karen, I think vigi may be speaking about the comments made by some of the Bayport people in reference to the “tent city ” people walking through the tube to get a burger at In& out, then some beer at the gas station. Or comments about bringing crime in from Oakland. Living in a development in the middle of a shopping center is a little different from living in a “million” dollar home at Bayport. I would say that if folks are interested in what these people had to say you will need to listen to the meeting and their comments. Then make up your own mind.

    Comment by John P.(L) — June 27, 2013 @ 12:13 pm

  25. John, ” little different from living in a million dollar home”

    All the more reason they are fighting to protect their investment.

    Comment by Karen Bey — June 27, 2013 @ 1:11 pm

  26. Folks, I have lived in Alameda and Bayport since 2004. I am one of the first ones to buy a home there. Mostly, I agree with Lauren’s comments mainly because this whole discussion is starting to sound very similar to the discussion that preceded the renovation and expansion of the Alameda Theater. Now, we all know that, overall, the theater has been a huge success for Alameda as a whole. The “bad elements” that were perceived to be lurking in the shadows waiting for another movie theater to open so they could ransack the area never really came to fruition. What has come to fruition are places like Scolari’s, Pappo, District and M Zoe Couture, to name a few. Locally-owned businesses that have shown the ability to prosper especially when most of these businesses started during an economic downturn.

    Now let’s take a breathe and take a look at the bigger picture and realize that one In-n-Out Burger is not likely to turn the west end of Alameda into a scene from Gangs of New York. What will happen and has been happening (remember there a few fast food joints at the west end of the island already) is that people will continue to leave their fast food bags, containers and cups in the streets right next to their cars. It happens way to often and it is unlikely to stop anytime soon. It sucks that I have to clean up after it happens but outside of staying up until two or three in the morning and waiting for them to do it, I don’t see any other solution.

    Also, at comment 21, we do not pay Mello Roos assessments. We do pay higher taxes than legacy Alamedans, but that is the result of Prop 13, something none of us can control at this point, and quite honestly, I, too, would take advantage of it if I had children to pass along my home to.

    Comment by Doug Waite — July 2, 2013 @ 3:20 pm

  27. @26, have you looked at your property tax bill lately (or ever)?

    See the line that says “Bayport CFD 03-1”? What do you think that is? Do tell …

    Here’s a sample Bayport tax bill that might help:

    I find it really odd (sad?) that you’ve been there since 2004 and are ignorant about paying Mello Roos assessments.

    Comment by alameda — July 2, 2013 @ 10:54 pm

  28. @ Alameda, i stand corrected and I eat crow. My recollection when talking with the Warmington sales associate back then was that Bayport did not have a Mello Roos assessment and that my wife and I were rather happy about that. Thanks for pointing that out.

    Comment by Doug Waite — July 3, 2013 @ 11:25 am

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