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Comment Archives: stories: Last 30 Days

Re: “A Towering Scam

Great follow-through! The demise of the grocery project might be the worst aspect of this debacle -- a story that seems to have faded from view in the past couple of years.

Unlike other West Oakland grocery projects that would compete with the nearby Pak N Save in Emeryville, the Jack London Gateway site is truly in a food desert -- with no full-scale grocery south of Grand or (aside from specialty shops in Chinatown) west of Lake Merritt.

Here's hoping this story remains alive, and that the neighborhood gets the store it's so desperately needed for so long!

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 10/26/2017 at 8:01 PM

Re: “Letters of the Week: Our Readers Chime in on Last Week's Issue

Im ignorant? Hardly. Housing in the United States is a commodity- associated with real property which is valued and revalued in every economic cycle. Property in the Oakland Hills was once cheap and used primarily for ranching and logging. Now its valued much higher. Folks who cant/wont invest their incomes in home ownership will always struggle when the sale value of their rented homes/apartments exceeds the rental returns it generates to the owner. The crisis Ms. Calef speaks of is not a crisis but rather the simple economic lesson of supply and demand. Urban and suburban neighborhoods are always susceptible to change, but its not from any sinister plot by any group, color, or political party. Renting is not investing.

Posted by michael.sagehorn on 10/26/2017 at 4:33 PM

Re: “Living Dangerously

We control the fire in these developed areas. As a result, the vegetation grows more dense, and more flammable. A natural area would be burned out on a regular basis, making the area less flammable. The homes in these areas need to have a yearly tax that pays for regular brush, road, tree and other clearance. Then they would be paying for the cost which the fire ultimately imposes on other taxpayers.

Posted by Jerry Udinksy on 10/26/2017 at 1:57 PM

Re: “Living Dangerously

Story, while usefully informative especially for those who have never reflected on California ecology, fire science or land-use policy, omits making critical connections.

It's all about transportation. Suburbs, the WUI and even the denser urban areas of California are all designed for the automobile.

It's like building a highrise office building with a separate elevator for everyone who works in the building. That's as sensible as what we've done in developing land, building buildings and creating transportation infrastructure.

We would have to rethink how we get around in order to use land better.

No, the robocar is not the solution--it's still a car.

Posted by Hobart Johnson on 10/26/2017 at 10:19 AM

Re: “Baby Concha Officially Wins Halloween

love it and conchita too.

Posted by Amalia Rincon on 10/26/2017 at 9:49 AM

Re: “Tuesday’s Briefing: Rent Control Expansion Proposed for Ballot; Newsom Says State Needs to Build 3.5 Million Homes

Build all the affordable housing that is necessary with appropriate tax funds etc. BUT do not try to take advantage of mom and pop property owners that have enough problems already with managing their properties. Rent Control is income redistribution and is an economic disaster except for a few tenants and it is suspect as to how it really helps things overall.

Posted by Mike Mitchell on 10/26/2017 at 8:36 AM

Re: “Overland Country Bar and World Ground Cafe Shut Their Doors

Overland was great when it first opened. Great food, line dancing, etc. It kept getting worse and worse. By the end, the menu sucked and the place lost its charm. I'd say it was management, not the city. Tho I am sure rent was too damn high like everywhere in the bay.

Posted by md2 on 10/26/2017 at 8:26 AM

Re: “Opinion: Why We Plan to Develop on Vacant Land or Non-Residential Sites

I am a neighbor of 1919, and it was never my request or any of my neighbor's request that the project have an increased density. Haber never held a series of community meetings regarding 1919 Market to ask what the community wanted. He is using the Live Work code to circumvent that process and to rob the community of a voice. We the community have spent many hours coming together on our own in opposition of Haber after he started demo on the project and showered our neighborhood with toxic tust. He did the demo without proper permitting.

The community does want to see 1919 Market responsibly renovated, but Haber is obviously not the guy to do it. He is offering 59 parking spaces to 400 new residents in a neighborhood where parking is already tough. He is touting his plan for making affordable housing, but $1,000 - $1,500 for a room in a shared apartment with 2-3 other people is not affordable to many people. He has poisoned the neighborhood, and would have continued to do so if the community had not raised such an outcry. Haber claims that he had multiple meetings with the community, but has explicitly said that he is not interested in meeting with the community as a whole. He is using this Live Work loophole to push forward a project that way exceeds the density of anything in our neighborhood.

Posted by Mike510 on 10/26/2017 at 8:01 AM

Re: “Oakland Police Chief Made False Statements About ICE Raid

It is ridiculous to think you can trust the police.

Posted by Laura Brusstar on 10/25/2017 at 10:16 PM

Re: “A Towering Scam

...ANd people complained about Uber. Yes, they suck, but they were bringing real jobs to Oakland

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 10/25/2017 at 9:05 PM

Re: “A Towering Scam

Solid journalism

Posted by CrowdExpert on 10/25/2017 at 3:43 PM

Re: “Will Oakland Arts Organizations Find A Home at the Rehabilitated Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center?

I found this post in an effort to just find some update on the status of this project to revitalize and reopen this beautiful building. The website for the new project says that Orton "hopes to begin construction in 2017." Anyone know if that's likely to happen in next couple months? Also, I wonder if there are local boosters or other groups working specifically to make sure that the Oakland Symphony gets a home there within the restored space; that's an effort I'd be glad to join. Cheers.

Posted by Neighborhoodist on 10/25/2017 at 3:07 PM

Re: “Emergency Circus Brings Laughter to Victims of the North Bay Wildfires

Very nice article. Thanks for writing.

Posted by Clay Mazing on 10/25/2017 at 1:54 PM

Re: “Letters of the Week: Our Readers Chime in on Last Week's Issue

Mr. Sagehorn reveals his ignorance of the housing crisis and home ownership in general with his comments. Most renters would be home owners if they could afford to buy into their own home but they cannot. They don't have the funds and don't have the income.
There IS something sinister about our economic history which has consistently awarded tax breaks to the top 10% richest in the country and kept wages flat for the past four decades. Learn from that Mr. Sagehorn.
E. Calef

Posted by liza calef on 10/25/2017 at 1:25 PM

Re: “Going on the Offensive

Want the untold truth behind the City Managers motives?Well its easy!Her job was on the line, so she fabricated stories, making false accusations towards city councilmembers, thus shifting the attention from her to them.
This is not good government.(Remember Gallant vs Tam).Its a similar play out of the same old playbook.

Why could she not speak on facts, rather than rumors and hearsay?Is she that selfish and worried about her own job, that she is willing to tarnish the reputation of others?I believe so after reading this article.It opened my eyes to the other side of the story.A side that chronologically explains her evaluation process, to why it has been delayed, to why the evaluator resigned, and now to our current state of affairs.

The City councils dissatisfaction with Keimach began well before she decided not to hire Weaver, who actually withdrew himself from the horrendous process before any announcement was made.Keimach knew of her possible demise with the draft of her job performance, dated on August 20th, from her evaluator, Rob Gould.This occurred before the interviews for the new fire chief began.Then on September 28th, Gould suddenly quit, for unknown reasons.Finally, on October 2, the city manager decided to release her own opinion through her old friend Dan Borenstein.

Whats even more bullshit, is she knew what her preliminary evaluations already looked like back in August.The public should be perturbed at the fact that she had access to them, and formed prejudices on those councilmembers that rated her not so favorably.

There are lots of gaps to be filled, along with some untold truths.Only time will tell.

Posted by Richard Gozyna on 10/25/2017 at 12:24 PM

Re: “Maker's Common Is a Restaurant Truly for the People

No one is saying they shouldn't charge $19 for good Fried Chicken - just don't call this of the people, bro. It ain't.

Posted by Jono Schneider on 10/25/2017 at 11:42 AM

Re: “Going on the Offensive

This is certainly shaping up to be quite a matter here in my fair island city of Alameda. In the interest of trying to provide a look at this matter from a variety of perspectives, here's what a local, Alameda blog (… ) had to say about two specific issues mentioned by Mr. Tavares, on the animal shelter and Alameda Point water quality matter.

From Alameda Merry Go Round, by Robert Sullwold: "The strategy for the defense" (October 20, 2017)

Excerpt: Alameda Point water contamination incident: " 'The City Manager participated in conference calls and was in direct communication with me throughout the incident,' Ms. Ott, who was on the front lines with Interim Public Works Director Liam Garland, told us. (She added, 'I was also in direct and regular communication with the Acting City Manager, the Police Chief, Paul Rolleri.') Likewise, after reiterating his previous praise for the Citys response, Mr. Biggs confirmed to us that 'the absence of the City Manager, who I understand was at an out-of-town meeting, was not a deterrent or caused a delay in any way.' "

Excerpt: Alameda Animal Shelter negotiations: " The final example of Ms. Keimachs purported incompetence cited by Ms. Harris was one not previously mentioned by Mr. Tavares: the 'huge delay in the FAAS decisions,' presumably referring to the negotiations over the renewal of the lease between the City and the Friends of the Alameda Shelter. . . .We wont spend a lot of time on this one, since its not immediately clear what action by Ms. Keimach Ms. Harris was criticizing. We recall that Mayor Trish Spencer publicly complained about the length of time the talks were taking, and that there were some FAAS supporters who suspected staff was dragging its feet in order to get a better deal for the City. But if those suspicions are correct and we are in no position to know; neither is Ms. Harris Ms. Keimach is guilty of being a sharp bargainer not an inept manager."

Posted by Tony Daysog on 10/25/2017 at 9:56 AM

Re: “Letters of the Week: Our Readers Chime in on Last Week's Issue

Ms. Chen: The issue of what makes the folks of West Oakland vulnerable to housing displacement is neither their color nor creed, but rather their choice to be renters not owners. As demand for property in Oakland grows, rents and property prices will all rise. Theres nothing sinister about economics. Learn from it.

Posted by michael.sagehorn on 10/25/2017 at 7:36 AM

Re: “Town Business: Oakland Picks More Locations for 'Safe Haven' Homeless Camps, and City Mulls New Cannabis Rules

Kaplan needs to go. S/he is NOT pro business and what Oakland needs are people who can make this a friendly business environment. S/he is more concerned where to put people who choose not to work rather than people who can HIRE people who do.

Posted by Garry Ovalbach on 10/24/2017 at 10:02 PM

Re: “Activists Hasten Oakland's Slow-Moving Plans to Permit Homeless Encampments

We need a tough approach to this problem- not allow any tents or encampments anywhere in Oakland. This is a complete hazard for all. Look at the mess near W Grand and MLK. Do you want to live near the "Walking Dead?"

Posted by Garry Ovalbach on 10/24/2017 at 9:51 PM

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