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About this City Journal

A new neighbored emerges along the San Francisco Bay

Entries in this City Journal

Retep Molinari

Undergrounding 880

the 880 highway runs along the eastern shore of the San Francisco Bay between San Jose and Oakland. Its route crosses the Coliseum complex, and thus the new project area.

A decision was made early on that the freeway would be submerged. Taking up over 150 acres, including on and off ramps, the highway took up valuable real estate. Moreover, the highway divide the project from the local shoreline, a natural park that would only improve the desirability of the developments to come.


The low-density industrial and commercial sites between the freeway and the Bay would be located within the project area. This, combine with under grounding the freeway, would allow for more parkland, environment restoration, and a more liveable environment. for the new community.


Undergrounding any freeway is never an easy or cheap proposition. But because the surroundings area lacked urban density, the cost ($240 million) was manageable and easily covered by the increase in land values and grants from environmental restorations funds.

The tunnel would be built directly east of the exisrting highway, allowing traffic to flow freely.



Time to move that Church!




And at the northern end, the off ramp that fed directly into the stadium's parking lots would be eliminated.




And with that, major construction could begin!

Coming up next, Transit Connections!


Retep Molinari

Outlining the Plan

Note: the image problems from the last entry should have been fixed.

The project to replace the Oakland Arena and Coliseum complex is one requiring massive scope and vision. Beyond the basic agreement to keep Major League Baseball in Oakland in the first place, conflicts about who could live there, how transpiration would be managed, and what types of jobs would be created were all of pivotal importance.

(Want to share your ideas? I have some burning questions I'd love some input on at the bottom of the entry!)

The Community meetings were plentiful and challenging...



But in the end, some basic agreements were made about the scope of the project.

Stadiums and Economic Development:

  • New, smaller baseball-only venue to be built on site & option to construct arena
  • Anchor tenants will include new 3- or 4- Hotel (to take advantage of proximity to airport)
  • Space for 2,000 tech jobs, 3,000 manufacturing and office jobs, and 1,000 retail and hospitality jobs


One proposed design for a new ballpark.


  • Project to be anchored by existing BART & Amtrak stations.
  • Local connections to BART to be improved in light of reduced parking
  • Special events parking to be minimized and prioritized.


Coliseum BART Station as it appears today.


  • 20,000 Residents, built mostly on publicly-owned land
  • 1/3 of units must be below market rate, with another 10% for very low-income
  • Medium density developments will account for 80% of units


Here's where you get to share your ideas!


The question of the week: In this universe, the Raiders and Warriors have both left Oakland. Should an arena be built for special events like concerts, rodeos, and conventions, or should the space be used for other purposes?

  • Yes! The economic and cultural benefits are critical!
  • No! Not worth the cost without a keystone tenant!


Rendering of one proposed arena

Share your ideas, and I'll post a new update soon!

Retep Molinari

New Beginnings

It's 2018 and the city of Oakland, CA is ready for a new beginning.

Following years of indecision, political strive, and corporate greed, a decision has at long last been made. The Oakland Athletics baseball team will remain in town along with a new ballpark to call home.


The decision to rebuild will serve as a catalyst for redevelopment in the southern section of Oakland. But in the long history of redevelopment in American cities, there are countless failures for every triumph. The decisions regarding what will be built in this area--including housing, employment centers, public facilities, and the new stadium itself--will impact Oakland for generations to come, for better or for worse.

This City Journal will tell one permutation of this story.

Author's Note: this CJ will not strive to show the existing environment of southern Oakland in accurate detail. Not only is this simply not the purpose of the CJ, but this area is a dull, desolate place not worth anyone's time to accuracy depict using the limited tools SC4 possess. This journal will focus on the redevelopment within the area of the Oakland Coliseum complex. Images will include what I have created representing southern Oakland mostly using vanilla features. Don't sweat it--the good stuff will be richly diverse.

Project Scope


The Oakland Coliseum Complex is a massive expanse of land in southern Oakland. The complex includes the Coliseum, and Oracle Arena, and a large surface parking facility. The area is served by the Nimitz Freeway (I-880), Amtrak Capitol Corridor, and Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), the latter also serving the nearby Oakland Airport.

The surrounding neighborhood includes mostly low-density housing, industrial sites, and commercial areas primarily serving the Oakland Airport. The area is situated near Oakland's boarder with San Leandro to the south. To the east lies San Leandro Bay, a sub-body of the San Francisco Bay. Mostly overrun by industrial sites, the natural environment includes San Leandro and Lion creeks and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Regional Shoreline.

The opportunity for something grand presents itself--as it does for a boondoggle of epic proportions. How will it unfold? We shall see.

Up Next... the Plan Unveiled!



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