Developing in Alameda: Marina Shores design, transportation plans up for review

Developing in Alameda: Marina Shores design, transportation plans up for review

Michele Ellson
Marina Shores

Designs for Marina Shores. Image courtesy of the City of Alameda.

The Planning Board will consider design plans Monday for the new Marina Shores housing development on Buena Vista Avenue and for a 32-unit, six-building affordable housing complex in Alameda Landing.

The board will also take a look at a transportation plan meant to blunt the traffic Marina Shores is expected to generate – a plan required of all new housing developments in Alameda.

The Lennar-owned Marina Shores development- also known as Marina Cove II - is slated to offer 52 two- and three-story homes on the site of an old Chipman Moving & Storage warehouse at 1551 Buena Vista Avenue, along with 37 row house condominiums in three buildings. Sixteen of the homes will be affordable for families earning low and moderate incomes.

The design is intended to ease the visual transition from the single family homes that populate the Marina Cove development to the Del Monte warehouse, which could contain up to 309 units; its single family homes will border the former development, while condominiums will neighbor the latter.

Dozens of the homes will contain “universal design” features including wider entries, ground floor bedrooms and bathrooms and spaces where grab bars can be installed, making the homes accessible to seniors and disabled people. Such features were among the changes Planning Board members requested when they first reviewed designs for the project on May 27.

In a report to the board, staffers said fill will be added to the development site in order to raise the new homes above a projected flood zone. It says the city and property owners at Marina Shores and the rest of the Northern Waterfront – one of the city’s main development areas – will at some point in the future need to design and fund a flood protection system that will line the water’s edge. But the report didn’t say when the process would begin or where the money will come from.

The board will also consider a transportation plan designed to reduce the traffic the new homes are expected to generate. Under the plan, Marina Shores residents would pay $365 a year plus cost escalators to fund a transportation coordinator who will promote alternatives to driving, bus passes and access to an existing shuttle to BART in Oakland.

The Chipman property has been zoned for housing development since 1999, and the City Council signed off on the Marina Shores development in January 2013. Shortly after that, the property’s prior owner, Trident Homes, sold it to Lennar.

Also on Monday, the board will consider the proposed design of an affordable housing complex on Wilver “Willie” Stargell Avenue that will be part of the Alameda Landing project. The project is slated to include 32 one-story flats and two-story townhomes in five buildings to be sited on just under an acre.

The project would be built by affordable housing developer Resources for Community Development and owned by the Alameda Housing Authority, which will lease it back to a new limited partnership in which it will be included. The development will be managed by the John Stewart Company, which manages the housing authority’s Park Alameda building and the Breakers at Bayport, another affordable apartment complex.

In addition to the new homes – which will range in size from one to three bedrooms – the development will contain a 1,434-square-foot community building and outdoor courtyard, and a children’s play area.

It will contain fewer new homes than the 39 originally planned, but more of the homes will be set aside for residents with very low incomes – $46,000 a year for a family of four, according to federal guidelines for the East Bay.

Funding for the project – like most affordable housing projects – is expected to come from a variety of sources that will include an investor seeking the tax credits such a project can provide, Alameda Landing developer Catellus, Alameda Landing homebuilder TRI Pointe Homes, the housing authority, the city and Alameda County.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. Monday in council chambers at City Hall, 2263 Santa Clara Avenue, and it will be webcast live on the city’s website and broadcast on Comcast cable channel 15 and AT&T cable channel 99. More information on the design and transportation proposals is available on the city’s website.


Submitted by Ron Gilmette (not verified) on Fri, Jul 25, 2014

This article mentions affordable housing. Affordable for who? There is no affordable housing in Alameda.