New Details Emerge on Where the A’s and Oakland Stand in Howard Terminal Baseball Stadium Plan Negotiations

0

The Oakland A’s said they’ve agreed to build the number of on-site affordable housing the city wants in the team’s proposed waterfront baseball stadium — a key sticking point in their negotiations with officials – in exchange for more money to help pay for infrastructure, but the city rejected the terms.

Dave Kaval, president of the A’s, said the baseball team agreed to the city’s terms for on-site affordable housing – 15% – in exchange for tax money generated from parking, sales and commercial license to help pay for infrastructure improvements at the proposed ballpark. to place. Kaval did not specify how much tax the team wanted. Mayor Libby Schaaf said the revenue from these taxes would be millions of dollars.

“We are working hard to reach a negotiated settlement that can work for all parties,” Kaval told The Chronicle. “I thought it was a fair compromise to try and get this project done.”

But Schaaf told The Chronicle that the A’s proposal was rejected because the city believed there were “superior ways” to cover the costs identified by the A’s without putting taxpayers’ money in the city’s general fund at risk. the city.

The revelation is the latest insight into the state of negotiations between the city and the A’s, who have been working on the final terms of the proposed project for more than a year. The two main sticking points have been affordable housing and covering the cost of off-site infrastructure.

At stake is a $1 billion privately funded 35,000 seat waterfront baseball diamond at the Howard Terminal, 3,000 residential units, up to 1.5 million square feet of retail space, up to 270,000 square feet for retail, a 3,500-seat indoor performance center, 400 hotel rooms and up to 18 acres of publicly accessible open space. The A’s proposed project would be one of the costliest developments in the country and would dramatically change Oakland’s waterfront.

Schaaf told The Chronicle the city is confident the A’s will meet the city’s demands for affordable housing: 15% on-site and 20% off-site.

But Schaaf said the city wants to use tax revenue from the parking fee and business licenses for other needs, including critical offsite infrastructure upgrades and safety improvements.

“I think there are other disposable revenues generated by the project itself that could meet the needs identified by the A’s,” Schaaf said, referring to the infrastructure tax funding district the city is proposing on the Howard terminal site and who is potentially applying for a new federal tool that allows projects near passenger stations to qualify for low cost loans of the federal government.

The A’s said they had not yet received a counter proposal from the city. Schaaf said the city is preparing its proposal.

City of Oakland staff proposed creating an infrastructure funding district at the Howard Terminal baseball stadium site to divert property taxes from the project area to help fund infrastructure, such as affordable on-site housing, parks and other “community-significant infrastructure” over a 45-year period. Oakland said the taxes would not otherwise exist without the project.

The city is also seeking help from the county to provide public funds to pay for on-site infrastructure so the A’s can build their project. The supervisors have declared their intention to join the city in helping with these costs, but have not yet taken a binding vote to do so.

The supervisors met on Tuesday to briefly discuss their involvement in the project. A consultant hired by the county in March to analyze the project’s financial impacts will release those findings later this summer.

The county consultant said Tuesday that the city would have a development deal before city council on September 20, but Schaaf told The Chronicle that was incorrect.

Instead, the council will hear a financial analysis of the project in September. The date for board approval of the final development agreement has not yet been set.

In addition, council member Noel Gallo, who opposes the plan, is fighting to impose an “advisory” measure on the November ballot that would probe what residents think of the plan. The ballot measure would not give voters the power to approve or reject the project, but Gallo told The Chronicle it would help inform council members making the final decision.

Gallo said he wants the ballot measure to “force” the city and the A’s to do an independent analysis of the project’s finances. The city council is expected to decide at a July 5 meeting whether to put Gallo’s proposal on the ballot.

But the A’s said Gallo’s measure was a delaying tactic. The A’s want a final vote on the development deal while Schaaf is still in office and before current board members are removed from their positions. Schaaf ends this year.

Three current council members are running for mayor. Two of them will give up their seats to run for mayor. Vice Mayor Rebecca Kaplan is also heading to a November runoff for District Three’s seat on the Alameda County Board of Supervisors. If she wins, she will leave the city council.

“Before you know it, it will be the election, and there will be a different city council, a different mayor,” Kaval said. “We are running out of time for this group of public decision makers.”

Sarah Ravani (her) is a staff writer for the San Francisco Chronicle. Email: [email protected]: @SarRavani

Share.

About Author

Comments are closed.