The Oakland Army Base closed in 1999. After over a decade of competing visions of what should happen to the base, it will be a $1.2bn "trade and logistics-oriented development that serves the adjacent port" (source). Ground breaking occurred Nov 1, 2013.

Details of the Plan

The City and the Port both own a part of the base and are working together on the new plans. The developer is California Capital and Investment Group (the same developer that renovated the Fox Theater and the Rotunda Building). According to Oakland Magazine, "The $1.2 billion plan calls for CCIG, in partnership with industrial developer Prologis, to build a new bulk marine terminal, to house bulk shipments; create a million square feet of trade and logistics warehouse space for imports and exports; build a new rail system to serve both the bulk marine terminal and the new trade and logistics facilities, and relocate two recycling operations from the West Oakland neighborhood onto the base."

Here is a link to the city's planning and development site at the Oakland Army Base Project.

Where did the money come from to build it?

The redevelopment is expected to cost approximately $1.2bn. According to Oakland Magazine, "The city took advantage of a $242 million state grant for transportation corridor improvements that it would have lost if not used last year [2013]. The $500 million first phase also includes a $50 million investment from the city, $15 million from the port, and about $125 million CCGI and Prologis." 1

Key People

Phil Tagami - CCGI President and CEO. The project that was eventually chosen for the site was part of his vision and his organization will be the key developer.

Fred Blackwell - City Administrator. As Assistant City Administrator, Fred Blackwell was a supporter and key person that made this project happen (along with the Coliseum City redevelopment project).

Chris Lytle - Executive Director of the Port of Oakland and key supporter of the project.

Potential Outcomes


Supporters of the plan argue that construction should involve 1500 positions and that after construction there should be about 1800 permanent jobs. There is a 50% hire local provision and no screening of hires for criminal records (this is part of an effort to encourage ex-offender hiring). However, estimates for these kinds of projects are notoriously unreliable and typically significantly overstate the expected benefits in job creation. Especially given how much automation there is in many ports, and that the trend is towards increasing automation, it's difficult to say whether this number of jobs will actually be created.

Environmental and health effects

The Port is already a significant source of air pollution in West Oakland with about 10,000 truck trips through West Oakland every day. The effects are significant (for example, children in West Oakland have higher than average rates of respiratory illness (source). It's highly likely that this project will increase the amount of pollution in the area.

Links and References

  1. Oakland Army Base Makes Headway as Logistics Center Oakland Magazine March 2014