We are committed to collaborative solutions to address the needs of the San Leandro community at large, and the first step in that endeavor is transparency and communication.
Has 899 Alvarado been approved?
Yes. 899 Alvarado was approved in a 6-0 unanimous decision by the San Leandro Board of Zoning Adjustments on March 7, 2019. As we prepare for construction, 899 Alvarado is committed to continuing to work with the community and the City to help create a better San Leandro. Construction on the new FAASL conservatory at 844 Alvarado will commence in 2019 with 899 Alvarado commencing construction following construction completion of the new conservatory.
What types of improvements to Alvarado Street will be made?
A significant portion of the western edge of Alvarado Street is undeveloped — no sidewalk has ever been constructed there, and the area does not meet the City’s streetscape standards. San Leandro’s 2035 General Plan and Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan embrace the concept of “complete streets,” which is a multi-modal approach to street design. In the past, streets were designed to prioritize automobile traffic. “Complete streets” treats different modes of travel more equitably, prioritizing pedestrian and bicycle safety over automobile traffic.
As part of 899 Alvarado, new streetscape will be constructed along the western edge of Alvarado to meet the needs of the neighborhood and provide for a safer pedestrian environment, including a sidewalk, pedestrian bulb-outs, landscaped buffer, street trees, and pedestrian scale lighting. Additionally, as part of the project’s review process, we will work with the City to identify the appropriate improvements to Alvarado Street which could include striping for a bike lane and new crosswalks.
How tall is 899 Alvarado?
899 Alvarado will comprise two buildings, one at four stories tall and the other at five stories tall over ground floor podiums. Both buildings are under the maximum permissible height of 75’.
How was the number of units at 899 Alvarado determined?
The proposed number of units is consistent with City of San Leandro General Plan goals, objectives, and policies related to Transit-Oriented Development Mixed Use (MUTOD). The purpose of this designation is to provide for a mix of high-intensity land uses that capitalize on proximity to the San Leandro BART station. This designation maximizes the potential for transit-oriented infill development and emphasizes the vertical mixing of different uses. This Project will carry out the TOD Strategy by having new development that is attractive, high density, and creates a positive image of revitalization. Specifically, the San Leandro Development Code, for areas in the DA-4 (S), provides for a unit density rage of 100 up to 120 dwelling units per acre.
Additionally, the San Leandro 2035 General Plan and the 2015-2023 Housing Element were important documents for determining the housing needs for the City. The 2015-2023 Housing Element further describes the Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) allocation for San Leandro. RHNA is a “fair share” housing allocation process prescribed by the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) with the fundamental premise that each community in the region has an obligation to accommodate a share of the region’s need for housing. San Leandro’s allocation between the years 2015-2023 is 2,287 total homes.
What type of security features have been integrated into the design of 899 Alvarado?
A common misconception many residents have when a new multi-family development is proposed is that there will be increase crime in the neighboring communities. However, many scholars have studied and written about the relationship between introduction of multi-family housing and crime rates, and the findings are consistent: there is no correlation between multi-family housing and increase in crime. Additionally, in the words of renowned urban sociologist Jane Jacobs, an increase in population can provide “eyes upon the street, eyes belonging to those we might call the natural proprietors of the street.”
Research aside, public safety and security remains a top priority for 899 Alvarado and the community. The project will include internal and new pedestrian-scale street lighting, a solid 10-12 foot concrete wall that will be constructed along the railroad, buildings will require key card access, and 24-hour courtesy patrol will likely be part of the long term operational plan.
Has a traffic analysis been conducted for 899 Alvarado?
Yes, a Transportation Impact Study (TIS) prepared by CHS Consulting Group, dated October 2018, and determined that the Project would result in no significant impacts with respect to the additional traffic.
Will the project provide dedicated off-street parking for its residents?
Yes. Adequate on-site parking and access will be provided for the multi-family residential development. The off-street parking requirement being one-quarter mile from BART is one parking space per unit for the Project. The 892 off-street parking spaces proposed for the 687-unit development would exceed the off-street parking requirement by 195 off-street parking spaces.
Can the Project Sponsor work with the City to make Cherrywood a gated community?
The development of a gated community would conflict with Policy LU-2.13 of the 2035 San Leandro General Plan. Cherrywood is encouraged to discuss any options directly with the City.
Can 899 Alvarado ensure that its residents will not visit the park within Cherrywood?
The park within Cherrywood is a public park, and by definition, is open to all members of the public. That being said, we have programmed a robust number of onsite amenity spaces dedicated to 899 Alvarado residents. 899 Alvarado also includes many public amenities like a children’s playground, parklet, outdoor running track, and dog park which residents of neighboring communities are welcome and encouraged to visit and enjoy.
There are existing urban challenges along the Union Pacific Railroad and San Leandro Creek. Will 899 Alvarado help address some of these challenges?
The community should have continued discussions with the appropriate City agencies and elected officials on how to best address some of the existing challenges along the Union Pacific Railroad and San Leandro Creek. As 899 Alvarado will be joining the community, we are similarly invested in the well-being of San Leandro and its residents.
On-street parking is already a challenge along Alvarado Street due to BART spillover parking as well as within Cherrywood itself. How does the project address parking?
899 Alvarado meets and exceeds the off-street parking requirement for its site. Additionally, its close proximity to BART encourages transit use over use of a personal vehicle. However, understanding that parking is an existing challenge, we will work with or facilitate discussions for the neighborhood and the City to identify appropriate parking policies and strategies to address the existing parking challenge.
What will the Project Sponsor do to minimize the impact to the neighborhood during construction?
Construction can be disruptive, and we will work with our general contractor and the appropriate City agencies to ensure impacts on the neighborhood are minimized. Special considerations will be similarly taken to minimize noise and dust during construction. Additionally, we will work closely with our general contractor to ensure that construction-related traffic is focused outside of peak AM and PM commute times. Furthermore, a project representative will be available at all times via phone and email during construction to address and resolve neighborhood issues and concerns expeditiously.
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