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Monday, March 11, 2019

Oakland’s Athletics need a home. They may get one — and provide 6,000 more

The Oakland Athletics badly need a new home. Their current one, plagued by plumbing problems, is an uncomfortable throwback to the days when baseball and football teams shared generic stadiums lacking in charm and good sight lines.

For two decades, the baseball team has looked for that new ballpark throughout the Bay Area. The Athletics’ latest offer, and possibly their last, is to build 6,001 homes in Oakland — one for themselves along the waterfront, the rest for a city desperately in need of housing.

In times past, taxpayers typically financed the stadiums and arenas, and the teams kept the profits. As California led the way in cutting those subsidies, owners turned to real estate development, making money by surrounding their venues with restaurants, shops and offices.

Now, with soaring rents in Oakland and elsewhere amplifying the housing shortage in California’s coastal cities, they are building homes.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 11, 2019 at 10:42 AM | 17 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: athletics

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   1. DL from MN Posted: March 11, 2019 at 11:36 AM (#5821832)
Can one of the locals help me understand what is driving the lack of housing? Is it the quality of the land coupled with the need to earthquake proof that is driving up the cost? Is something else working against the density needed to solve the problem?
   2. Jeremy Renner App is Dead and I killed it Posted: March 11, 2019 at 11:44 AM (#5821840)
DL: Area zoning prohibits building up so no chance for higher density. Also zoning on mixed use tough to make happen. Huge population influx obviously because of tech. Old timers don't want apartment buildings and also don't like public transit.
   3. Jeremy Renner App is Dead and I killed it Posted: March 11, 2019 at 12:04 PM (#5821851)
1-I answered more from the view of SF. Oakland area has actually built a lot of housing the last few years but because you cannot get a ####### thing in SF all the spillover has been to the East Bay which is booming. Supply cannot keep up.
   4. Baldrick Posted: March 11, 2019 at 12:34 PM (#5821868)
SF in particular but the Bay Area in a larger sense is ground zero for the destructive triangle of NIMBY v. YIMBY v. affordable housing advocates. The second and third both have many legitimate points, but they tend to run interference against each other a lot and given the rate of development it's pretty tough to handle the need.

I will say, as someone who lived in the Bay from 2008-2016 (on a grad student salary), I find the horror stories about housing to be a little bit overdrawn. It's a tough market, to be sure, but it's not as impossible as it can seem. You have to get a little lucky, but there are still plenty of solid deals out there for renters.
   5. Jeremy Renner App is Dead and I killed it Posted: March 11, 2019 at 12:40 PM (#5821869)
5--Until the homeless and human waste issues are addressed I think everyone is going to keep hammering on housing right or wrong. It's crazy that a place reeking of cash reeks also of excrement.
   6. DL from MN Posted: March 11, 2019 at 12:42 PM (#5821871)
Don't like public transit? I have always considered the bay area one of the more transit-friendly areas I have visited.

If only the zoning prevents building up they need to find council members willing to change the zoning.

I know there is always the tension between people who own property who like "high property values" but they are typically not the ones buying property at those prices. High property values = unaffordable housing.
   7. Jeremy Renner App is Dead and I killed it Posted: March 11, 2019 at 12:49 PM (#5821875)
6: Ha, ha. The old hipsters are being shown to be seriously violating their core principles. Everyone's a lover of doing the right thing until money gets involved. Public transit hits home values. And the old timers think their homes are their chance to strike it rich and then head to New Mexico or wherever. And anyone who starts talking about re-zoning gets drowned in texts, tweets, facebook posts, emails that they DESTROYING THE NEIGHBORHOOD.

It's awesome to watch but pathetic in policy
   8. Tom Goes to the Ballpark Posted: March 11, 2019 at 12:50 PM (#5821876)
There are a whole host of issues that have created the housing shortage in coastal California, but there is pretty much no “unused” land in the places people want to live. There is underutilized land that could be redeveloped into housing, but this has created NIMBY and zoning battles. Building codes are strict and make it difficult to build entry level housing product. Basically, if you are going to build something it is easier to make money building high end housing than affordable housing.

There is some movement to loosen zoning in proximity to transit hubs, but the NIMBYs are deeply offended about living within miles of any housing that is more than 3 stories tall and lacks ample onsite parking.
   9. caspian88 Posted: March 11, 2019 at 02:01 PM (#5821895)
On top of all of this, the recession hit California hard, drastically slowing down construction for years. We're basically behind where we needed to be in housing stock ten years ago, let alone today, and playing catch-up is hard.

The stresses on the Bay Area spill over across the whole state. People live in Salinas or Fresno and commute to San Francisco to work, and the housing prices are reflecting that.
   10. QLE Posted: March 11, 2019 at 02:22 PM (#5821903)
Don't like public transit? I have always considered the bay area one of the more transit-friendly areas I have visited.


It's complicated- while it is an area with quite a bit of public transit, much of the heavy infrastructure is, depending on what system we're talking about, either built in the 1920s (Muni Metro) or 1960s and early 1970s (BART). In recent decades, there have been two separate issues: NIMBYism and a similar lack of political will have blocked the rapid-transit lines that ought to be built (for instance, it's why there's no line down Geary Boulevard, where the bus lines are heavily used and which covers a portion of the city lacking rapid-transit infrastructure), and the lines that have popular demand are questionable projects (the decision to build BART to San Jose, when electrifying CalTrain costs a fraction of the price and offers a more direct route).

As two other points:

#9 is key statewide- my neck of the woods has been building heavily in the past few decades, but it has been negated by rapid population growth that in many regards is spill-over as the San Francisco commuter belt keeps moving east.

In addition, I sincerely wonder if certain aspects of the housing situations aren't being made worse by aspects of Proposition 13- I wonder how many of the issues with NIMBYism would be as severe in a system where their property taxes had a closer connection to property values.
   11. Jeremy Renner App is Dead and I killed it Posted: March 11, 2019 at 02:33 PM (#5821906)
Lots of great input in these posts
   12. DL from MN Posted: March 11, 2019 at 03:13 PM (#5821915)
I wonder how many of the issues with NIMBYism would be as severe in a system where their property taxes had a closer connection to property values.


Great point. Prop 13 is one of the causes of the high housing costs all over California.
   13. Tom Goes to the Ballpark Posted: March 11, 2019 at 03:28 PM (#5821916)
Prop 13 complicates everything with California housing and certainly has, at the very least, indirectly reduced inventory.

Lawsuits are often a problem too. If a developer tries to build something high density and affordable they are probably going to be sued by NIMBYs. If a developer tries to build something high end they are likely to be sued by affordability/community activists.
   14. Starring RMc as Bradley Scotchman Posted: March 12, 2019 at 08:14 AM (#5822008)
I'm actually attending an A's game in July (first trip to the west coast).

Their current (stadium), plagued by plumbing problems

Anything I should avoid, besides the bathrooms?
   15. Traderdave Posted: March 12, 2019 at 09:30 AM (#5822018)
Anything I should avoid, besides the bathrooms?


Unless you're in one of the prime rows near the field, the 100 level seats are not a great value. 200 level around the infield, though farther away, have much better sight lines but AVOID rows 1-4 in any of those sections. Your view will be constantly blocked by passers by.

If you're going to a night game, avoid RF bleachers and foul territory. Setting sun will burn your eyes first few innings.

If you're trying to make it for SSB & first pitch, allow extra time for the airport style security.

If you're driving, show up early and tailgate. It's one of MLB's very few remaining tailgate scenes and it's loads of fun. I make it a point to park near other tailgaters and it's always great. Sometimes play catch or wiffle ball, trade food items back n forth, etc or just BS about the game.

And all the points above re: housing are all correct, though all of them understated. The problems are bigger & worse that how posters describe them.
   16. No.19 Posted: March 12, 2019 at 11:53 AM (#5822065)
I'm actually attending an A's game in July (first trip to the west coast).


Don't know where you're coming from, but be prepared for a chilly evening if you're attending an evening game.

I haven't had any issues with the bathrooms in a while, but I'm using the women's restrooms -- which have actually been spiffed up a bit :-)

I usually get my meal from the food trucks which are parked between the Coliseum and the Arena.

The A's are adding a whole bunch of different seating areas in addition to the Treehouse this year. My friends and I are thinking of checking out the Hero Deck or the Terrace this year.

Athletics Nation story re new Coliseum seating options
   17. Tom Goes to the Ballpark Posted: March 12, 2019 at 05:15 PM (#5822221)
And all the points above re: housing are all correct, though all of them understated. The problems are bigger & worse that how posters describe them.


A lot of what was written here is general info about coastal California. Specific areas (particularly SF) are dramatically worse than what is described. This article talks about how the housing supply is likely to get even more strained due to another 10,000 millionaires becoming liquid this year in San Francisco.

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