Blogging Bayport Alameda

July 13, 2022

Wrote the book

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

While I was looking up the definition of integrity on the National Park Service National Register Bulletin on How to Apply the National Register Criteria for Evaluation, by the way it’s:

I ran across something I had not noticed before but first, just in case folks don’t know, this is THE guide to use when you’re writing up a nomination to try to make an argument that a building or property is historic. It’s the Bible of these historic nomination things, unless you’re California’s SHPO/SHRC and they seem to just not care about following the rules and just pushing forward what feels good to them. Maybe it’s a face saving maneuver and doubling down now, who knows.

This is from the Preface:

And then I ran across this bit and it made me recall a letter I read a while ago.

See that signature line? That’s right the same person who worked on revising the Bible on the criteria on determining historic-ness has said that the Maritime School “cannot convey the significance of its former self.” If the person who literally wrote the book on how to evaluate historic criteria isn’t sufficiently persuasive enough for California’s SHPO/SHRC then nothing anyone else says has the ability to sway this group. It’s fait accompli once a staff member at SHPO decides to champion a project and that seems highly and deeply problematic.


  1. So, out of curiosity, in the unlikelihood of Carmen Reid’s application being successful, what is Plan B for the Wellness Center? Ask a court to overturn the decision? Find a different location? Drop the project? With today’s 9.1% inflation, supply chain issues, and a 19.2% rise in Ca. construction costs, the price tag for this project is spiraling ever higher as we speak.

    Comment by Common Sense — July 13, 2022 @ 8:48 am

    • We’re already planning on putting it at your house and making you pay for it, because fuck you.

      Comment by Rod — July 13, 2022 @ 10:17 am

      • I like your style Rod.

        Comment by John P. — July 13, 2022 @ 3:04 pm

  2. So, the Savage letter is dated April 8 demanding removal from an agenda later in April. What has happened since?

    I sent the following email to Ms Savage with CC to several including the person to whom she addressed her letter, Julianne Polanco, State Historic Preservation Officer ( and her Deputy, Jenan Saunders (

    – National Register Nomination for a federally owned property located at 620 Central Avenue, Alameda CA.
    – Your letter to Ms. Julianne Polanco, State Historic Preservation Officer, California Dept. of Parks & Recreation dated April 8, 2022.

    Dear Ms. Savage,

    Thank you so much for your helpful and informative letter regarding the above nomination. The basis of your determination renders all assertions in the recent nomination moot.

    In agreement with the GSA, Dr. Knox Mellon, former California State Historic Preservation Officer wrote a letter dated March 23, 2003, where he stated:

    “A review of the submitted documentation leads me to concur with GSA’s determination that the Alameda Federal Center is not eligible for inclusion on the NRHP under any of the criteria established by 36 CFR 60.4. Although the property has associations with World War II-era training of officers associated the US Maritime Service, it has lost considerable integrity of design, materials, setting, feeling and association with its historic period of significance (1942-1957). Those structures that remain do not convey the special nature of the property’s historic maritime training mission during and after World War II.”

    As you pointed out, changes to the property since 2003 have made the site even less worthy of nomination.

    Further, there is a question as to possible motives, using this nomination to block the GSA’s intended use of the property.

    I am very interested in getting an update on this matter.

    Comment by pro-wellness center — July 13, 2022 @ 2:11 pm

  3. Unbelievable. The Federal Preservation Officer of the GSA comes out and says “No,” and the SHPO doesn’t just stop the application?

    Seems like a pretty subjective call (and unfounded) on the part of the SHPO. *yikes*

    Comment by Jennie VH — July 21, 2022 @ 3:32 pm

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