Facing pushback from the Bay Conservation and Development Commission’s (BCDC) Design Review Board, which determined that the plans for a 155-room resort hotel to rise up to six stories in height on the Jack London Square parcel known as F3 would not adequately provide “a distinctive waterfront place with sufficient invitations for the public” to linger and enjoy the San Francisco Bay Trail and public area between the permitted hotel and estuary, the project has been redesigned by the project team.

The development’s cafe at the corner of Water and Harrison has been redesigned to be more open and inviting versus previously, with a public porch, seating and arrival plaza.

The buffer between the hotel and estuary has been changed from a landscaped dune to an “Estuary Green,” with a flat flexible lawn, fitness stations, picnic areas, lounge seating and even a hammock grove and “beach.”

And if the refined plans are approved by the BCDC, the CIM Group, which has yet to ink an operator for the hotel, hopes to break ground by the middle of next year and have the hotel open in early 2021.  We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.

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Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by Matt in Uptown

    The dune feature was historically accurate. I’m very disappointed by the ignorance of the BCDC. The dune was a feature that made this project different than any other hotel in the Bay Area. The BCDC robbed Oakland of a unique asset. Our design review board often pushes back when a project tries to be unique, but I never expected the BCDC to be anti-dunes???

  2. Posted by Patrick

    Ummm… no. Dunes are not “historically accurate” to this area, which was historically mudflats as this 1857 view shows.

    • Posted by Frisco

      Wow! Alameda wasn’t an island and lake Merritt wasn’t a lake!

      • Posted by Outoftown

        Yes, mind blown! Didn’t know either of those facts, mostly surprised that Alameda was a peninsula.

        • Posted by SocketSite

          As we noted a few years ago, “Once a peninsula connected to the Oakland docks, a shipping canal was dredged in 1902 which turned Alameda into an island.”

          • Posted by Outoftown

            Nice home, didn’t expect that on Alameda island – I didn’t read your site 3 years ago, and I am not sure that I would have found your note either way 🙂

    • Posted by Matt of Uptown

      Yes, sand and small wind generated sand hills (aka dunes) we’re very much a part of the area before 1857. They weren’t towering dunes, but nor was the proposal, Patrick.

    • Posted by Zefabes

      Cool map, thanks for sharing.

    • Posted by Notcom

      While we may debate endlessly how far the wind blew sand onto the mud a century-a-half ago, there’s nothing to say “historically accurate” is the way to go (much of downtown San Francisco was “historically” under water, and tho that may be looming in the future, I don’t think many are recommending it).

      I think this is a big improvement – not one palm tree! Sonny Crockett and his pastel-clad friends will just have to hold their reunions somewhere else.

      • Posted by Matt of Uptown

        Some yutz comments not knowing that sand underlies (not up for “debate”) 100% of Downtown and West Oakland from the estuary to Grand/W Grand and you’re like “historic blah, blah, blah.” Well, it’s there and I’m factually pointed out how false the BCDC’s argument against it is. Jumping to present context… so dunes wouldn’t be unique? They wouldn’t be a multi functional space for the public to enjoy themselves?

        • Posted by Notcom

          The BCDC’s concern’s don’t seem to be focused on either historic accuracy or uniqueness, but if that’s the sand dune you want to die on, fine. I’m just happy something is planned for there, and think it’s a shame the Port tore down Jack London Village a decade-and-a-half ago and did nothing with it since.

          • Posted by Matt Chambers

            Agreed, leveling the village was a huge mistake.

  3. Posted by Brian M

    My only major complaint is that the post headline does not contain OAKLAND in a larger multicolored flashing font.

    I can’t imagine OAKLAND! ever had anything as plebian as MUDFLATS. Maybe you should call them “sedimentary shelves”. Sounds more prestigious! All part of the conspiracy!

    Other than that, this is a fine, much improved design. Sometimes “design review” works.

  4. Posted by ananimal

    Wow, that landscape got neutered! Is it benign enough for everyone yet? And that bubble diagram is a joke. It’s just a big boring lawn, and the bubbles should read “goose poop” and “crab grass.”

    • Posted by Don

      Don’t worry, the dogs will keep the geese away. That neighborhood’s lousy with dogs.

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