Blogging Bayport Alameda

April 7, 2014

Bays front

Filed under: Alameda, Development, Northern Waterfront — Tags: , — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

So, I said I wasn’t going to get excited about anything at the Del Monte building again, but, I guess I lied.  Tim Lewis Communties’ proposal for Del Monte is all kinds of interesting.   It took me a while to get to it because the video from the Planning Board meeting where it was first introduced took a while to get uploaded.   But here is the full file.   I’ll pull out some renderings that I think are particularly notable.

First, here are inspiration example (not necessarily designed by the architect) but the direction that they are going in for the Del Monte project.

Screen Shot 2014-03-24 at 3.31.42 PM

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Screen Shot 2014-03-24 at 3.32.26 PM

Are you getting a feel for what they are going for? Essentially they will keep the facade and historic building itself, but nestled behind (or in this case between) the two historic buildings they’ll place a slightly larger, more modern looking building to add “intensity.”

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So if you notice the reference to Bays 1, 2, 3, and 4, here’s the floor plan:

Screen Shot 2014-03-24 at 3.42.17 PM

As you notices, Bays 1 and 4 have the original building profile, it’s the two inner Bays, that will have the higher profile, but the idea is that it will be so set back that it won’t be obtrusive.   The architects also mentioned that they didn’t want to surround the project in a “sea” of parking, so some of the parking is located on the ground floor of the inner structures.  But if you notice the site plan, there’s a, maybe not a sea or parking, but definitely a largish body of water of parking still surrounding the development so…

Regardless of the intensity of the parking, I like the idea, it is supposedly going to be a mix of retail and housing, which should work in a large space like that.   I’m hopeful that this is the plan that finally moves forward for this building.   Which is a great building, and you know I don’t say that about a lot of historic buildings.


  1. And the architects Tim Communities has selected to design the Del Monte building is pretty awesome too. Bar Architects from San Francisco has designed everything from wineries, resorts, hotels, and clubhouses, to multi family buildings and mixed use developments.

    Comment by Karen Bey — April 7, 2014 @ 7:38 am

  2. It seems like a good use of the building. Any idea how adding that many units to the area will affect traffic?

    Comment by Denise Shelton — April 7, 2014 @ 9:33 am

  3. I donno, I get the feeling those tall boxy things in the middle/rear will end up as the dominant eye catcher and make the rest of the squatty brick look strange. Kinda like a Model-T parked in front of a Winnebago but what the hell it’s better then what we got.

    Comment by Jack R. — April 7, 2014 @ 9:38 am

  4. I was going to agree with Jack, but in examining the sectional drawing of existing building, it looks like the new fangled thing will not stand above the existing. So don’t be mislead Jack by 178 Townsend above, as I was for a second or two. I was on HAB when the hotel was proposed and they got approval for replacing the corrugated metal shed roof in front with a glass awning to mimic the existing, but we spent an entire meeting, or maybe two, parsing the plan with a fine toothed comb. The point being, some preservationists may have issues with the proposal, but I have no idea who is on HAB these days. In terms of construction costs it is probably pretty slick to gut the interior and build new if they have some nifty way to maintain the facades in the interim. During the construction of the Apple store on 4th Street in Berkeley they had a partial collapse of a wall they were trying to maintain and I don’t know if they saved it. It slumped on the building next to it. At Rythmics they also had an emergency situation with that facade and they weren’t even trying to gut the place, but they didn’t know until demo that the building had suffered major fire damage. This design is a pleasant surprise considering what Lewis served up for Neptune Beach. I’m not qualified to opine on traffic, but that never stops anyone. Tube capacity aside, the access to Constitution seems pretty good through Marina Village. Boatworks which is approved has me scratching my head. The more I think about the east bound intersections of Blanding and Clement at Park, the more muddled I am about mitigating maximum commutes generated, but I’m done second guessing qualified traffic engineers for a while. Still waiting to see how vehicles will fare getting in and out of In-N-Out.

    Comment by MI — April 7, 2014 @ 11:05 am

  5. I am so looking forward to seeing this fine building reused attractively– maybe in the future it will be my home!

    Comment by Kevis Brownson — April 8, 2014 @ 10:45 pm

  6. Doesn’t the proposed Cross Alameda Trail and portions of the Alameda Beltline property run along the north side of Buena Vista? This would be a good opportunity to get the developer to pay for that portion of the trail as part of the redevelopment negotiation. In that diagram you posted, all I see is parking where the trail has been proposed.

    Comment by Aaron Thies — April 9, 2014 @ 11:14 am

  7. I live on Jay street, not quite at Buena Vista. While I’m tired of seeing the building lie fallow and crumbling (especially with those squeaking air vent caps!), I have VERY big concerns about the traffic impact – both in the neighborhood, and on the island as a whole.

    During the exodus from the last antique fair, the streets were jammed everywhere as people tried to get to either Park street or Webster street to get off the island. There needs to be another ingress/egress to the island to deal with the additional flow as it is – especially as more tenants collect around the new Target. And Buena Vista is already accommodating a fair amount of traffic. Even with extensions of other streets (Atlantic? Sherman? Clement?), there should be serious thought given.

    Comment by sushispook — April 13, 2014 @ 9:04 am

  8. 3.4. I take it back. I was a bit sloppy in observing the sections and concentrated on upper section for bays 1 and 4. I just saw another standard architectural elevation from Buena Vista, posted on the Alamedan ( and I now think Jack in #3 is right. If the height difference is that great for bays 2-3 there has some be some architectural modifications. 1-4 are in scale. I’m disappointed because I thought this was sort of creative amalgam but Tim Lewis is 0-2 in Alameda on design.

    Comment by MI — April 25, 2014 @ 12:58 pm

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