Port Of Oakland Approves Term Sheet For New A's Ballpark
The Port of Oakland yesterday "cleared the bases" for the A's to "possibly build a 35,000-seat ballpark on its Howard Terminal site," according to Ali Tadayon of the San Jose MERCURY NEWS. The Port's Board of Commissioners "unanimously approved an exclusive negotiating term sheet that would give the A's four years to obtain land permits, conduct an environmental review and do other preparatory work needed to eventually lease the 50-acre Howard Terminal." The term sheet "lays the framework for an agreement that would allow the A's to lease the port property" for about $3.8M for each of the first 20 years of a 66-year lease, with the rent increasing after the "first couple of decades." The commissioners "added a last-minute amendment to the term sheet, calling on the A's and the seaport businesses to join forces and negotiate standards that would ensure the project doesn't hurt or otherwise interfere with port operations." After the meeting, A's President Dave Kaval said that the team has "tweaked their plan to accommodate other port businesses and may tweak it more in the coming years" (MERCURYNEWS.com, 5/13). Kaval also said that he "hopes of breaking ground" in '21, and opening in '23 (MLB.com, 5/13).
CONCERNS REMAIN: Port workers said that the development of the Howard Terminal site also would "include below-market and market-rate housing -- and the added presence of people coming to those homes, along with customers streaming to the ballpark, could overcrowd the area and hurt shipping." Kaval said that he "plans to address concerns by developing a 'robust' transportation plan allowing people to go to and from the ballpark safely, particularly over the railroad tracks." He also said that the team is "committed to dedicating 10 acres of the plan to maritime uses" (S.F. CHRONICLE, 5/14).