250 14th Street Site

While approved for a 16-story tower with 126 apartments over 3,200 square feet of retail space and a podium garage for 81 cars to rise up to 175 feet in height upon the Lake Merritt Station Area parking lot parcels at the corner of Alice and 14th Streets last year, the controversial 250 14th Street (a.k.a. 1429 Alice Street) project has yet to break ground.

And Golden Stone Investment Corp, the owners for the 250 14th Street parcel, are now pushing forward with plans for a 6-story building to rise up to 85 feet in height across the site, a plan which would yield a total of 79 apartments over a ground floor of retail space, the revised designs for which will soon be presented to the City for review.

Keep in mind that plans for a 35-story tower with nearly 200 condos had been proposed to rise upon the corner site prior to the Great Recession but were subsequently abandoned.

And yes, a shorter development will still result in the loss of the “Love Arts Music” mural which has adorned buildings on two sides of the project site since 2014. But as Oakland’s Planning Department opined last year, “murals are temporary art pieces and…development should not be limited due to their presence because it could negatively impact future allowances for murals to be installed due to concerns of property owners losing their development rights.”

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Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by Adam

    The only story involving a mural being covered that irks me was the one near Civic Center in SF commemorating the America’s Cup race, and which was also intended to serve as a memorial for the sailor who died. I think it was visible for about a year.

    • Posted by Metroliner

      it’s still there. I saw it the other day.

    • Posted by Notcom

      Actually the big mural scandal in Oakland was the Kronnerburger/Key Route dustup which became the apotheosis of the “THEY’RE destroying OUR town” narrative. Oakland survived, but whether/not the tradeoff of local color for overpriced/undercooked sandwiches was worth it – or even necessary – is a debate I suspect will never be resolved.

      • Posted by E. Gonsalves

        That was a beautiful mural. The building was vacant for a long time so the new restaurant was definitely an improvement even with the mural gone.

        • Posted by Notcom

          And they fixed the clock too.
          Oakland has no shortage of murals, it’s just unfortunate some of the better ones – this and the panorama on 27th – were the ones that have been lost.

  2. Posted by E. Gonsalves

    Why focus on this development shedding “29 stories” when Oakland has already broken ground on a 33 story residential building, a 24 story residential building, while also getting ready to demolish a garage at 13th & Franklin where a 40 story building will soon break ground? I’ve never seen so many cranes in Oakland in my lifetime with plenty more on the way.

    • Posted by Occupied in Oakland

      I’d like to know the root causes and if specifically if they be related to actions of City Council or “community activists” who act more like a shadow government.

      • Posted by Sassy

        Um, this is in District 3 who is represented by Lynette Line Her Pockets McElhaney…

  3. Posted by Mark

    Oh, cuz maybe the entire Bay Area needs housing to keep up with demand.

    • Posted by E. Gonsalves

      Yes, but this development is an exception to other high rise residential going ahead in Oakland. Let’s try to focus on the positive instead of the few developments that may be shrinking.

      • Posted by Mark

        Thanks, but I’ll focus on all planned developments.

  4. Posted by BTinSF

    One story is not a “focus”. You want to cover up the fact this is happening by failing to report it at all?

    • Posted by E. Gonsalves

      I know the SF Business Times has also focused on “shrinking” development in Oakland. Why not report on all the highrise residential under construction and about to break ground in Oakland?

      • Posted by SocketSite

        That’s a great idea, here you go. And now back to the specific project at hand (which we have been tracking since early 2016) and/or the downsizing trend in general…

        • Posted by Notcom

          Indeed, I’m a little surprised that more haven’t offered up a “the cycle is over!” spin on this. Of course, the fact that these people have essentially sat out one of the biggest booms in Bay Area residential building history – it seems like this project has been shrinking the whole time of its (non) existence, and it’s been 18 mos since we last debated parking podiums here – makes it easy to think maybe they’re just “all hat no cattle” (or perhaps “all hardhat, no shovel”).

          • Posted by E. Gonsalves

            Exactly. This may shrink entirely out of existence. This may be the Uber method of developing in Oakland.

  5. Posted by jwb

    35-16=19.
    35-16!=29

  6. Posted by macarthur

    High-rise construction is extremely expensive.

    • Posted by Anon123

      Yes – 6 story building = wood frame, which cost less per square foot. Perhaps that means that it will actually get built.

  7. Posted by Sutro_Tower

    Hope they have security round the clock if this version gets off the ground- fire seems to be attracted to new wood framed construction in the East Bay.

  8. Posted by Sassy

    This decision is short-sighted. It may be more profitable to build shorter and out of wood based on today’s conditions. But in the long run downtown sites so close to transit and services will be even more desirable and scarce in the future. Not to mention the loss of affordable units built either on site or elsewhere through development fees.

    • Posted by E. Gonsalves

      It’s enteresting that developers a few blocks away, at 13th & Franklin, are about to break ground on a 40 story residential building.

      • Posted by Sassy

        I think that speaks volumes on the type of developer and what kind of investors they use.

        • Posted by Jay78

          The current owner is poor!! They should sell it to Boston Properties or another developer with deep pockets.

  9. Posted by Justin

    The Hotel Oakland and the Malonga Center are much older and taller buildings. This new development at 6 stories is a seriously stupid move. Is the developer broke and just trying to get something going? Can we really not do better?

    • Posted by E. Gonsalves

      If the developer can’t do a dense development in this transit friendly area, he should sell the property to someone who can and will. They really need to utilize those ugly surface parking lots on 14th street. This should be a dense beautiful boulevard connecting Lake Merritt and City Center.

  10. Posted by Notcom

    One project shrinks, another grows

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