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Transit-Oriented Developments Underway in Oakland

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From left to right: Margaret McFarland, Commonwealth; Shani Ryan, Chase Bank; Sylvester Grigsby, Community Advocate; Director Robert Raburn; Councilmember Larry Reid; Michael Johnson, Urban Core; Mayor Libby Schaaf; Clint Bolden, Oakland Economic Development Corp.

By Robert Raburn

The BART Board adopted a bold policy in June 2016 to encourage Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) on lands owned by BART.
Creating mixed use, commercial or housing developments at BART represents a smart strategy that improves the region’s quality of life, economy, and helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Living and working near BART represents access to opportunity.

The Bay Area’s imbalance between burgeoning job growth and stagnant housing supply has resulted in skyrocketing housing costs and the displacement of workers who cannot afford to live near the job centers.

Throughout the region, BART envisions long-term leases yielding 20,000 much-needed housing units by 2040. Of particular significance, all income levels will be accommodated.

The policy sets a goal that 35% of the overall projected units (7,000) will be affordable. At any particular site, a minimum of 20% of the units will be affordable.

Construction is well underway at MacArthur Transit Village. A total of 875 housing units and over 30,000 square feet of commercial retail space is planned.

In early 2016 tenants began to occupy “Mural,” the 90 units of affordable housing built by BRIDGE Housing. Currently underway is a mixed-use development with another 383 units being built by Hines.
In early 2018, Boston Properties will break ground on a 24-story tower that will add another 402 units. To complete the makeover, the station plaza will be rebuilt and include a secure 200-space bike station and lighting designs adopted by the Temescal-Telegraph Improvement District.

Fruitvale Village is the site of the iconic mixed-use TOD opened in 2004 that includes 47 housing units. A Phase IIA agreement with BRIDGE Housing, the City of Oakland, and East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation will deliver 94 housing units (92 affordable) to be called Casa Arabella in honor of the founder of the Unity Council.
We welcome the inclusion of 20 units for homeless veterans that will offer supportive services.

“Coliseum Connections” represents a 110-unit joint venture by Oakland Economic Development Corporation and UrbanCore, another local group. The groundbreaking was on Oct. 6. The development will include a 5-story building and 2-story town-homes. One half of the units will be affordable.
For more information, visit www.bart.gov
Robert Raburn is a member of the BART Board of Directors.

Community

Oakland Officer, Suspect Wounded in Shootout

A suspect was shot by an Oakland police officer early Wednesday and a police officer was also wounded before the suspect discarded his gun, barricaded himself inside a building and eventually surrendered, according to officials.

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Oakland Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong

A suspect was shot by an Oakland police officer early Wednesday and a police officer was also wounded before the suspect discarded his gun, barricaded himself inside a building and eventually surrendered, according to officials.

Police had received a report of a man armed and brandishing a firearm, who was determined to be on the 2200 block of Telegraph Avenue.

During a Wednesday morning news conference, Oakland Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong said that another officer returned fire after the male suspect opened fire on arriving officers.  

“The suspect immediately began to fire shots at the officer,” said Armstrong. “The officer was struck with that gunfire and through our investigation, we know now that our officer, (an) additional officer, did fire back – so we do have an officer-involved shooting that we’re also investigating, striking the suspect with non-life-threatening injuries.”

The suspect, who had a knife, barricaded himself inside the lobby of a multi-residential building. Patrol officers established a safety perimeter and advised residents to shelter in place.

OPD patrol officers, negotiators and the Mental Health Crisis Team established communication with the suspect, who was still armed with the knife and had begun stabbing and cutting himself.

Police said the suspect is 50 years old but did not identify him immediately. They also did not disclose what type of gun he had.

The Oakland Post’s coverage of local news in Alameda County is supported by the Ethnic Media Sustainability Initiative, a program created by California Black Media and Ethnic Media Services to support community newspapers across California.

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Digital Issues

Oakland Post: September 22nd – September 28th, 2021

The printed Weekly Edition of the Oakland Post for the week of September 22nd – September 28th, 2021.

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The printed Weekly Edition of the Oakland Post for the week of September 22nd - September 28th, 2021.

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Commentary

First in a Series on Jobs in Oakland. City Government; Please Do No (More) Harm

Oakland city government declares war on the unemployed. An overstatement? Not really.

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High Quality stock aerial photos of downtown Oakland with Lake Merritt in the foreground.

Oakland city government declares war on the unemployed. An overstatement? Not really.

City administration professes concern for its residents who need help with access to jobs and training, while at the same time failing to issue contracts to the community organizations that stand ready to provide needed services.

The city council approved these contracts in June. As of late September, they have not been issued by the city administration.

Q: What does this mean? A: Non-profit organizations, operating on shoestring budgets in the best of times, have been required to advance their own funds in July, August, and September to serve the unemployed, with no reimbursement by the city because as the administration says, “Your contract has not been signed yet.”

Another impact: the workers who provide front line job services may not receive their paychecks on time…. creating unnecessary instability in their own households.

And who is responsible for issuing these contracts? Yup…it’s the city…. painfully tone deaf to the needs of the community, particularly those on the economic margins. Most of those served with job help are Black and Latinx residents who consistently suffer double digit unemployment. Many are returning home after incarceration.

And for this level of harmful disregard, the city receives  28 percent of scarce job training funds. Astonishing, since the city provides no direct services to job seekers.

As Oakland struggles with its horrific crime wave, it seems that attention would be paid to root causes, joblessness being paramount among them. Instead, the city administration seems intent on hobbling the very groups who stand ready to help. This happens year after year…. with no apparent consequences to an impenetrable bureaucracy.

Oakland, we can do  better than this.

We must.

The Oakland Post’s coverage of local news in Alameda County is supported by the Ethnic Media Sustainability Initiative, a program created by California Black Media and Ethnic Media Services to support community newspapers across California.

 

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