Blogging Bayport Alameda

December 3, 2020

Same as you

Filed under: Alameda — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:03 am

Given how weighty this next Housing Element certification is going to be given the sheer size of Alameda’s RHNA allocation for the upcoming cycle, I’ve started to tag my posts for anything related to the Housing Element under HE 2023. Hopefully it will be helpful for folks as I intend to write quite a bit about it.

If you didn’t get a chance to watch Tuesday night’s meeting about this issue, you should. Even if you think you know the answers to how we get our Housing Element certified this time around, it’s still worth a watch because you will get a general sense of how each City Council member intends to approach this process moving forward. I’ll be posting a series of videos with the transcripts so that people understand some of the topics that arose around Alameda’s Housing Element certification.

This is part of the clarifying questions period and is in response to outgoing City Councilmember Jim Oddie question about whether other cities think they are unique and therefore should receive lesser allocations. The “unique Alameda” thing came up in the public comment.

101 cities of course they’re all unique, of course they are. But look we’re also very much the same.  When you look at a town like Alameda and you have the geography that we have and the bridges that we have it’s very obvious to come to conclusion about about restrictive access and it’s probably less obvious if you live in Contra Costa County and you gotta fight a half an hour on just one main road — Ignacio Valley Road — to get to one freeway.  In Alameda we have an entire ferry system funded by the toll payers on the Bay Bridge what no one in Contra Costa County, well I guess Richmond does now has that, but not in central Contra Costa County.
 
We have access to AC Transit, we actually have pretty good bus service when when you think about all this and our technical people go do the math on this, and they do do the math on this, you come to a couple conclusions, one Mayor Ashcr[a]ft mentioned was that Alameda County is one of those communities that can provide people with a better life.  We have good schools, we have a safe community, we have a good community relative to many of our peers across the Bay Area. 
 
And also technically speaking, while it’s hard to grasp this, we have very good access compared to many, many of our neighbors across the Bay Area and so this feeling that people have that we’re somehow unique, um sure everyone’s special, but you’re not that much different than everybody else.
 
When it comes to hazards: hazards were discussed at great length through this process, along with access, along with equity, along with transportation and on the hazard side — but the big hazard, and there’s a state law on this, has to do with wildfires and this notion about trying to keep people from going off into that interface on wildfires.
 
When it comes to climate change, discussed at great length, we have 20 billion dollars in our plan to mitigate for climate change which will take care of a great deal of the problem for some foreseeable part of the future. But, you know, climate change is going to probably affect I-5 more than it’s going to affect many roads around here because that water drains through the estuaries across the Bay Area and those, you know, Solano County 80 that’s probably the biggest scariest place.  Highway 37 going between Vallejo, look that’s in big trouble.  So we have a lot of a company, a lot of a company, on the issue of hazards across the Bay Area and across the state of California.

51 Comments »

  1. The already developed portion of Alameda, the 6.5 square miles East of Main, has a density of 12,000 people per square mile. No place in Contra Costa comes close to that, and we have an island’s natural constraints.

    So maybe we are unique after all.

    Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 7:30 am

    • The speaker didn’t say Alameda wasn’t unique. It’s literally the first sentence in both the video response and the transcript:

      101 cities of course they’re all unique, of course they are. But look we’re also very much the same

      Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 8:06 am

      • Here’s the TL;DR —

        The second sentence makes clear he thinks that is irrelevant.

        Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 8:11 am

        • Because Alamedans are trying to argue that we’re extra special because we have specific access issues without considering what access issues exist for cities we never think about. Because they’re also putting forth the fact that they are extra special because they have access issues specific only to their city.

          If we all think we’re special because we have access issues then, really, no one is special.

          Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 8:15 am

        • Atherton will probably feel special when it’s done with this.

          Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 8:23 am

    • Question: does this calculation use 6.5 square miles as the area of the MAIN island as the denominator while using the whole city’s population (78K) as the numerator, which includes 15Kk or so people from Bay Farm?
      Regardless, accommodating growth is not about specifying a specific density for the region and then being able to stop when you reach it. This would mean that SF could stop building housing until Livermore reaches the same density. How would that make sense? How would that meet climate goals? How would that progress the goal of citing people as close as possible to their jobs? How would that meet a desire for equity in providing opportunities for our children and neighbors?

      Comment by BMac — December 3, 2020 @ 2:23 pm

      • Main Island is ~7.9 square miles, less the Navy base’s ~4.0, then Bay Farm has about 2.6 squares, so we get land area of approximately 6.5 square miles East of Main. That’s 94501 plus 94502, minus former navy base.

        The questions you ask are valid. My only point is that Alameda has already done much more than most other cities in the Bay Area. It is fair to ask why so much less responsibility is placed on the others, who have contributed much less to density and housing and much more to sprawl and its deleterious effects, such as climate change.

        It flummoxes me why some people get their knickers in such knots at the subject of effective vs nominal density.

        Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 2:32 pm

        • My only point is that Alameda has already done much more than most other cities in the Bay Area

          Citation needed.

          Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 2:37 pm

        • The simple fact that our population density – when the 4 square miles of the navy base are excluded – is much higher than most of our neighbors’.

          When the base development is complete we should of course include the newly developed area and newly increased population in the calcs.

          It’s a really simple concept and again, it surprises me that using a real (as opposed to nominal) figure is at all controversial.

          Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 2:50 pm

        • Please point to objective studies which show that higher population densities correspond with cities having done their fair share in providing housing.

          Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 3:04 pm

        • Atherton won’t like it (or Alameda) if you keep saying that, dave

          Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 3:06 pm

        • I dunno, it might be hard to find a study which concludes that “larger numbers are higher than smaller numbers” or that “cities with more dense housing have higher population density,” but I’ll try.

          Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 3:11 pm

        • Atherton* is 5.02 sq mi of land area being inhabited (no, hogged!!) by about 7,000 people. I’m confident that land number excludes swamplands and I don’t think there are many big industrial sites distorting the numbers there either. On the map, it is a lot closer to (practically in the middle of) Silicon Valley than, say, Tracy (one of the outlying cities mentioned during the meeting as to which growth was viewed less positively than inner Bay Area locations like – in theory only, perhaps – Atherton).

          I don’t understand the how the equity score element of each city’s allocation works exactly. Atherton’s projected ABAG quota seems to suggest that we would hit diminishing equity returns for potential new residents of Atherton (as compared to their opportunities in other places) by expecting Atherton to provide for more than 300 new units. Maybe other factors explain this.

          * – I’m picking on Atherton because it appears to have one of the lowest densities in the Bay Area, but it also seems to be very much in the heart of the job creating area of the South Bay that has created much of the recent population pressure. Atherton might not have many worksites within the city limits (at least pre-covid), but they are not far away. On the map parts of it are close to either 101 and 280 and El Camino Real runs down the middle. There is also a CalTrain track that runs through it.

          Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 3:53 pm

        • fwiw, I think you’re about 1.0-1.5 square miles short on the main island based on a rough calculation I did for east of Main.

          “It is fair to ask why so much less responsibility is placed on the others, who have contributed much less to density and housing and much more to sprawl and its deleterious effects, such as climate change.” As for that, how can that be an argument against further densification of the urban core. I get the “4 bridges and a tube” argument. It isn’t compelling, but I understand it. Your argument is not logically consistent as far as I understand it. But then, I am an idiot.

          Comment by BMac — December 3, 2020 @ 4:18 pm

        • Your argument is that Alameda has “done more.” That’s a subjective argument because you haven’t presented anyone, other than yourself, saying that higher density means a city has “done more.”

          I mean just say that your source is “trust me.” But that’s not going to fly when you go and ask ABAG to reduce Alameda allocation.

          Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 4:21 pm

        • And yet folks encouraging the CoCoCo method of calculation will reduce allocations to cities like Atherton to zero.

          Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 4:29 pm

        • Is there any land to build on in Piedmont or Atherton? Serious question. Maybe there is.

          Comment by BC — December 3, 2020 @ 4:29 pm

        • That depends on what is meant by “land”. If you randomly dropped a house or an apartment building from an airplane on both Alameda and Atherton, your chances of hitting an existing dwelling would be much, much, much higher in Alameda – think about one dwelling per acre in Atherton. Eventually someone will go bankrupt there or want to sell to someone who can figure out how to squeeze more than one unit onto an acre. Or maybe subdivide some parcels. Yes, the money available to spend on the lawsuits to combat such efforts at equity would dwarf anything here and could, alone, require a new court annex….But, I’m still wondering how the numbers play out the way they do.

          Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 4:51 pm

        • But, I’m still wondering how the numbers play out the way they do.

          Well it’s not arbitrary, there are literally pages and pages and data visualization tools to show how and why the allocations are what they are. https://abag.ca.gov/our-work/housing/rhna-regional-housing-needs-allocation/housing-methodology-committee

          Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 5:13 pm

        • Gee, thanks. That really clears things up. ; )

          Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 6:14 pm

      • Bmac, it’s less an argument against further densification of the core than it is an argument in favor of greater densification of other areas at same time. If density is a goal, should it not be a goal for all of the Bay Area? Should Piedmont and Pleasanton be given so little responsibility while Alameda is loaded up with more?

        If providing housing opportunities is a responsibility of government, and I don’t think it’s a stretch to conclude that you believe it is, shouldn’t all of the G’s in ABAG pony up, especially the ones who done much less so far?

        Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 4:45 pm

  2. Thanks for sharing that. It’s an excellent eye opener.

    Comment by Lucy — December 3, 2020 @ 7:42 am

    • You’re welcome. Always happy to help.

      Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 7:45 am

      • dave – What makes you think Lucy is replying to you? Based on the threading, I believe she’s thanking Lauren.

        Comment by Reality — December 3, 2020 @ 3:43 pm

  3. I think these comments coming from the Director of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, who is also an Alameda resident is very significant.

    Comment by Karen Bey — December 3, 2020 @ 8:43 am

  4. “one Mayor Ashcr[a]ft mentioned was that Alameda County is one of those communities that can provide people with a better life. We have good schools, we have a safe community, we have a good community relative to many of our peers across the Bay Area.”

    Was he misspeaking there, and meant to refer to Alameda, rather than Alameda County?

    Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 8:54 am

    • Alameda is in Alameda County so I think he’s talking about the county as a whole.

      Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 9:09 am

      • Most of the other references in the excerpts are to the city of rather than the county. And the reference is to something Mayor Ashcraft said. Do you know if she was referring to the county or the city?

        Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 9:18 am

        • I think he was referring to the City of Alameda here and misspoke.

          Comment by BMac — December 3, 2020 @ 2:06 pm

    • Yes, I misspoke. Funny how often this happens when one has to cringe watch oneself…. I meant Alameda, city of.

      Summing up. The technical analysis shows things that most people in Alameda likely know already, as well as a few fact points that folks struggle with….

      The Bay Area’s RHNA number is higher than last time at 441k units, but keep in mind that a number nearer 600k was considered a possibility.

      Alameda’s RHNA share is pretty much within the average of the total projected Bay Area housing growth. Some communities similar to ours, such as in Santa Clara county, will be higher some will be lower.

      Alameda – city of – is considered a ‘high resource community’ as we share the characteristics with other high quality Bay Area communities that offers good schools, public safety, nice parks and other amenities, access to good jobs, and resulting from guidance in state laws to further fair housing opportunities, the RHNA process will seek to put housing in communities with this profile.

      Alameda has better than average mobility as compared to our Bay Area peers. This can be hard to accept given our Island reality. However, our roadway limiting geography – water – is not materially different than those communities with limited roads due to their geographic reality – mountains, hills, canyons, incredibly bad planning – yes you Solano county, eastern Alameda and Contra Costa counties…….. Fewer lanes, fewer options, no matter it be from terra-firma or water – its all the same when you’re stuck in traffic.

      Alameda’s hazard profile – earthquakes, sea level rise, limited access, is largely shared with many, many communities, often in places one might never think of. Yes, you Solano county…..Wild fires are a very big deal that Alameda does not have.

      Alameda is comparatively close distance wise to major job centers. Alameda has better transit options too – bus, ferry, casual carpooling, sorta access to BART, than most communities – as comparison, Alameda is closer – travel time wise – to jobs in downtown SF than many – maybe even most – neighborhoods in SF.

      While people might be frustrated with traffic – who isn’t. Our communities auto commute access (remember we are talking averages here) are not nearly as challenging as many of our peer communities.

      Lastly, I am not trying to talk anyone into anything. This process is a state law. It is prescriptive. It creates outcomes that are maddening. It is frustrating. But it is done with professionalism.

      Randy Rentschler

      Comment by Randy Rentschler — December 3, 2020 @ 10:29 am

      • Thanks!

        Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 10:46 am

      • Mr Rentschler:

        What you say about Alameda is basically true.

        What is also true is that Alameda is far denser than most of the other other communities you cite. Put another way, Alameda has already done more than its share for density and housing. Yet we are being prodded by ABAG to do far more than many other far less dense areas.

        It is a very fair question to ask why we must continue to do more while others do less.

        Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 11:21 am

        • dave – there you go again, throwing out that “Alameda is more denser than other cities” canard. You need to account for *livable* density (i.e. residential zones only), which should not include reserves, open spaces, parklands, commercial and industrial zones, etc. San Leandro has 70% more density than Alameda, and when we adjust for San Leandro’s large regional shorelines, parks, Heron Bay swamplands, the industrial and business parks stretching all the way from the Oakland Airport to near Bay Fair Mall, we realize that only 40% of the city is zoned for residential. Alameda, it is closer to 75-80% (let’s just say 65%, to be super generous). If you were to factor these numbers in, Alameda’s density is only over 1/3rd that of San Leandro. So please, stop this “Alameda is far denser” horsehit, no one is buying it.

          Comment by Reality — December 3, 2020 @ 12:38 pm

        • It is a fact that Alameda’s population is approximately 78,000
          It is a fact that all but a few hundred of those 78,000 live East of Main St.
          It is a fact that the land area of the city East of main is approximately 6.5 square miles.
          It is a fact that 78,000/6.5 = 12,000 (all approximate, obviously)
          It is a fact that 12,000 people per square mile ranks among the highest population densities in the Bay Area.

          Anything to dispute yet? I thought not, so let’s continue with more facts:

          It is a fact that the same area inhabited by those 78,000 people ALSO includes, in addition to residential development, school & college campuses, parks and nature preserves, shopping centers, business parks, religious institutions, a golf course, numerous business, and significant acreage of paved city owned streets.

          Said fact obviates your non-sensical word salad above. That same word salad that, though it attempts to disprove the obvious facts I state above, STILL agrees with me that the already developed portion of Alameda — once again that’s the ~6.5 square miles East of Main — is more dense than San Leandro and almost everywhere else in the East Bay.

          All this leads to the last fact: you are an idiot.

          Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 1:25 pm

        • dave – you didn’t do any comparative analysis, though. Do the same with San Leandro – adjust all the available land the same way you did with Alameda, and see if you still believe what you believe (hint – everyone else seemed to have back away from the density argument, except for you and maybe Paul Foreman). And I never see in any of your analyses any factoring for residential zones versus everything else – you can’t just compare cities with large commercial and industrial hubs like San Leandro and Oakland with a suburb that’s primarily designed to build homes. I’ll help you get started:

          Alameda Zoning Map – https://www.alamedaca.gov/files/assets/public/departments/alameda/comm-services/formsandhandouts/planning/zoning_map_edited_6_2016_resize_100dpi.pdf

          San Leandro Zoning Map – https://www.sanleandro.org/documents/Planning/Zoning%20Map%20Effective%2020200415.pdf

          Comment by Reality — December 3, 2020 @ 3:41 pm

        • Only you and somebody named “JRB” have ever challenged the point. Do you and JRB know each other?

          I’m violating my “no arguing with idiots or lunatics” rule, but at the same time, I don’t want to violate my “never back down when you’re right” rule, so you get this one last post. Savor it, it will be the last to you.

          San Leandro gives more data on zoning so let’s start with them. From chapter 3 of their general plan, page 22, we learn that 50.8 % of SL is zoned residential, 6.8% is mixed use, half of which is defined as TOD. Using a population of 90,000 and total land area of 13.3 square miles, the density of the 54.2% of the city zoned R and TOD is a bit less than 12,500/mile.

          https://civicaadmin.sanleandro.org/civicax/filebank/blobdload.aspx?BlobID=26481

          Alameda doesn’t give such granular data so we have to estimate, here goes:

          Above you cited a range of between 65 and 80% of Alameda being zoned residential, so using YOUR estimates we get a range of 15,000 per square mile (assuming 80% residential) up to almost 18,500/square assuming 65%.

          My own completely unscientific eyeball estimate is 70%, based on the graphics from this map on page 14 of the Alameda General plan. I found it more easily readable than the one you posted:

          Click to access AGP_PlanUpdate_wHousing_101520.pdf

          If that estimate is the right one, it comes in a bit higher than 17K per mile of residentially zoned land.

          Too much time wasted here defending a very simple concept that NO ONE but you and this JRB character has challenged. The reasons they haven’t are because it’s simple and straightforward, it’s easy for (literally everyone else) to understand, and because it’s accurate.

          I hope you have enjoyed my final missive to you, ever. No more keystrokes for idiots.

          Comment by dave — December 3, 2020 @ 4:27 pm

        • I actually wrote a post back in 2006 about our density both housing units per square mile and population per square mile using census data. At that time Alameda ranked 6th in population per square mile against other Alameda County cities below even Oakland:

          Cherryland CDP: 11859.2
          Ashland CDP: 11284.9
          Berkeley: 9823.3
          Albany: 9665.4
          San Lorenzo CDP: 7893.4
          Oakland: 7126.6
          Alameda: 6693.4

          https://laurendo.wordpress.com/2006/08/29/spin-your-statistics/

          Comment by Lauren Do — December 3, 2020 @ 5:24 pm

        • Atherton: 1,422

          Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 7:12 pm

      • Randy – “Alameda has better than average mobility as compared to our Bay Area peers. This can be hard to accept given our Island reality. However, our roadway limiting geography – water – is not materially different than those communities with limited roads due to their geographic reality – mountains, hills, canyons, incredibly bad planning – yes you Solano county, eastern Alameda and Contra Costa counties…….. Fewer lanes, fewer options, no matter it be from terra-firma or water – its all the same when you’re stuck in traffic.”

        Very well said. This needs to be repeated ad nauseam for all the Paul Foremans out there. I visited Clayton in Contra Costa County couple weeks ago. Very lovely town with so much vast land that I’m sure certain anti-RHNA Alamedans might say could easily fit in thousands more homes – but its connecting roadways to freeways are terrible – in fact, it is exactly the Ignacio Valley Road you mentioned.

        Comment by JRB — December 3, 2020 @ 12:24 pm

  5. I’m not sure what your point is, but I think he was trying to help us see the larger picture – comparing our City to other neighboring cities in our region.

    Comment by Karen Bey — December 3, 2020 @ 9:18 am

    • I was asking a question before making any point.

      Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 9:21 am

    • I do appreciate the transcription. I watched as much of this part of the meeting as I could. A full, non-excerpted, transcript would be a lot of work, but appreciated if anyone is willing to do it. And I am guessing that you are right that he was referring to a comparison of our city to others, rather than a comparison of our county to others, but he misspoke.

      Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 9:30 am

      • In addressing Alameda access issues, aside from a brand new ferry terminal at Alameda Point, the Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal (our third ferry terminal on the Island), we have another major funded transportation project in the pipeline. That is dedicated bus-only lanes on Appezzato Parkway that will connect with the existing bus lane on Webster Street leading to the Posey Tube through Oakland.

        Having dedicated bus lanes addresses Alameda access issues, and will help reduce traffic times through the Webster Posey Tube.

        The Alameda Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal also address access issues by becoming the new commuter ferry, providing a 15-20 minute commute to the San Francisco Main Ferry Terminal. This is significant because San Francisco is one of the major job centers in the country.

        Both of these major transportation projects are fully funded, paid for by taxpayer dollars. And the Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal is not only funded — but construction is complete.

        Comment by Karen Bey — December 3, 2020 @ 10:15 am

  6. Jim Oddie once again demonstrates a brilliant insight into an issue with excellent articulation and sanity. And the voters traded this guy for Trish “the trees!” Spencer?

    Comment by JRB — December 3, 2020 @ 9:23 am

    • My mistake, I was reading off of the quote instead of the video and didn’t realize it was Randy’s response TO Jim’s question. Excellent insight (and my point still stands).

      Comment by JRB — December 3, 2020 @ 9:26 am

  7. All of you live in ivory towers, obviously. Pre Covid, the 3 local bus routes servicing riders in the Webster St area, who worked in Oakland, or caught BART, or a connecting bus, were extremely crowded, standing room only. Sad to say, almost none of the passengers boarded after Atlantic Ave, meaning that residents of the new housing did not make use of public transit. Really, only 1 or 2 people, regularly boarded the buses after Atlantic Ave. The cars flowing from the new developments became much more plentiful, causing traffic jams much earlier than used to be. I catch a bus at 7:35am, and never, in over 18 years, experienced traffic jams before the new housing was built. The residents of the new housing around Target do not use public transit much, if at all. The few who use the 96 bus, from that area, are almost all, people who live at Alameda Point. A few times a month, a car would break down, or crash in the Tube causing hours of delays. After the Tube becomes inoperable, buses have to drive all the way from Webster Ave, to Park St, get on the Freeway and drive back to downtown Oakland and try to recover their route, missing many riders along the way The other issue is that Chinatown has to bear the brunt of the toxic fumes eminating from Alameda residents leaving the Tube and idling in traffic. Adding thousands more people exiting Alameda, will just add to the problems they have to deal with.

    Comment by Alameda Bound — December 3, 2020 @ 5:27 pm

    • Just to clarify, residents of Alameda Landing development have benefitted from the free commute hour shuttle that picks up near Target. It has been wildly successful and residents of this development have been measured to use transit at higher rates than Alameda as a whole.

      Comment by BMac — December 3, 2020 @ 7:02 pm

      • Are stats collected/published on that, and where? thnx. Right now (en tiempos de COVID), ferries, e.g., look to be running at no more than 20%/vessel capacity on a reduced schedule.

        Comment by MP — December 3, 2020 @ 7:25 pm

        • The Target shuttle is very small. The Alameda Landing residents mostly drive to work and shopping, as most “projected” residents of any new “Housing developments” will. Especially post Covid19.

          Comment by Alameda Bound — December 6, 2020 @ 7:48 pm

  8. The shuttle is pretty small and negligible as far as it goes. But on a lighter note
    httpss://youtu.be/avu8AW_5wfU

    Comment by Alameda Bound — December 3, 2020 @ 7:12 pm

  9. From the Department of Corrections and Retractions…..

    Above in this thread I made the statement that Alameda’s effective density, defined as the population density of the already developed portion of the city as the land East of Main, is about 12,000 people per square mile. I have made this statement more than once on this blog.

    The idea behind it is simple: our current and future density figures should be calculated based on land currently developed (the present day, which is in practical terms East of Main) or in the future, land that CAN be developed. Using the entire land area of the city, which includes the acreage of the runway & other areas of the base that will never be developed results in a faulty number.

    For quite some time I have used the figure of 6.5 square miles of dry land as the denominator. I defined that as the 10.5 square miles of the city less 4 miles for the base. (All numbers herein are approximations.) I based the 4 square miles of the base on several estimates I read stating the base’s size as between 2400 and 2900 acres. I’m not certain why the estimates vary, but they do. I settled on 4 square miles as a reasonable approximation. That’s 2560 acres.

    The other day, Bmac stated that he thought my number was too low by 1.0 to 1.5 square miles. I very often disagree with Mr. Bmac, but I know him to be someone who usually gets his facts straight. After reading his riposte, I googled harder and came to the realization that he was correct. The source of the discrepancy was the acreage of the base. As I looked more deeply, I learned that the descriptions of ~2500 acres were incomplete. The actual breakdown is about 1520 acres of dry land and 950 acres of submerged tidelands.

    A buddy helped me out & showed me the Google Maps function that can sketch out land area. It confirmed the result (with approximations and rounding errors).

    Alameda’s effective density is therefore closer to 10,000/mile. If we continue to density of residentially zoned areas, it ranges from 15,00/mile is residential is 65% of our acreage, down to a low of 12,187/mile if residential is 80%.

    I stand by the claim that unattainable acreage should not be part of the denominator. As for the claim that Alameda is more dense than its neighboring cities, obviously that claim is substantially diluted. It remains true that we have done more than many other cities, but not nearly so much as I had previously believed.

    I regret this error, I thank Mr. Bmac for his prod to correct it, and hope this clarification furthers discussion.

    Comment by dave — December 5, 2020 @ 7:11 pm


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