On Wednesday, the Oakland City Council opted to back two state-level bills that are seen as vital to a proposed Oakland A’s ballpark at Howard Terminal.
The A’s continue to push their proposal for the Port of Oakland’s waterfront Howard Terminal site, which calls for a new ballpark to anchor a larger development project that includes housing and other amenities. Two separate bills being considered at the state level have been pushed to help the proposal, with one designed to help streamline the permitting process and the other allowing for the creation of a special taxing district around the ballpark to cover infrastructure costs.
Those bills received the unanimous backing of the Oakland City Council on Wednesday. More from the San Francisco Chronicle:
The resolution was introduced by City Council members Loren Taylor and Nikki Fortunato Bas to ensure the city is part of the process as plans take form. It was passed by a 7-0 vote. Councilwoman Lynette Gibson McElhaney was excused.
“I think one thing is very true about Oakland: We all love our sports team,” Bas said at the meeting. “We want to make sure we make decisions that are in the best interest of Oakland today, as well as in the future.”
AB1191, written by Assemblyman Rob Bonta, D-Alameda, streamlines the permitting process for the new ballpark. The bill is expected to be voted on June 25 by the Senate’s Natural Resources and Water Committee.
SB293, written by Sen. Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, allows the creation of a new tax district in Oakland to cover millions of dollars in infrastructure costs. The bill will next be voted on by the Assembly’s Local Government Committee. A date has not been set yet.
From the city council’s perspective, there are still several pressing questions that have to be sorted out before members decide whether or not the council will grant final approvals to the Howard Terminal project. The A’s have been hoping to receive final approvals by the end of 2020 in order to facilitate a 2023 opening for the ballpark, but whether that is achievable remains to be seen.
In addition to the Howard Terminal project, the A’s are proposing to redevelop the Coliseum site. The project would include an amphitheater to replace the Coliseum, new construction in the existing parking lots, and would call for leaving Oracle Arena open for a variety of events.
RELATED STORIES: Oakland City Council: We Won’t be Rushed on Howard Terminal Decision; Economic Benefits of New Oakland Athletics Waterfront Ballpark: $7.3B; A’s Ballpark Bill Clears State Assembly; A’s Tentative Howard Terminal Agreement Approved; A’s Set for Crucial Howard Terminal Vote; A’s Nearing Vote on Tentative Term Sheet for Howard Terminal; Alameda County Moves Forward With A’s Coliseum Sale; Bill Supporting Howard Terminal Ballpark Advances; A’s Reach Tentative Deal to Purchase County’s Share of Coliseum Site; Maritime Industry Balks at A’s Howard Terminal Ballpark Plan; Traffic, Pollution Emerging as Biggest A’s Ballpark Challenges; Housing a Major Component of A’s Ballpark Proposal; A’s Adjust Howard Terminal Ballpark Design; A’s Partner With Environmental Justice Group as Howard Terminal Talks Continue; Manfred Expresses Optimism About A’s Howard Terminal Pitch; Groups Opposing A’s Howard Terminal Plan; Howard Terminal’s History Could Complicate A’s Ballpark Pitch; Study: Oakland Gondola Would Provide Economic Benefits; A’s Propose Howard Terminal Ballpark, Coliseum Redevelopment; A’s: We’re Track to Announce Ballpark Plan by Year’s End; Potential New A’s Ballpark Backed in Poll; Bill Related to New Oakland A’s Ballpark Signed Into Law; Legislature Approves Bills Related to New Oakland A’s Ballpark; Bjarke Ingels Group to Design New Oakland A’s Ballpark; Oakland A’s Enter Coliseum Negotiations; A’s Howard Terminal Vote Set for Thursday; Alameda County, Oakland to Negotiate Coliseum Site Ownership; Oakland Coliseum Site Now a Hot Property; Oakland Mayor Backs Negotiation Window with A’s; Oakland A’s Make Offer for Coliseum Site; A’s Still Considering Coliseum Site for New Ballpark; Oakland Seeks Full Ownership of Oakland Coliseum Complex