California Construction News staff writer
A California appeals court has upheld a San Francisco Bay Area judge’s approval of Oakland’s environmental impact report for a multibillion-dollar A’s ballpark complex at the Port of Oakland.
The First District Court of Appeal agreed that the city had thoroughly studied the environmental impacts of the ballpark project. Last April, Union Pacific Railroad Company and a coalition of marine, port and transportation interests filed lawsuits challenging Oakland’s certification of the EIR. An Alameda County Superior Court judge rejected legal challenges, and that decision has been upheld.
The estimated $1 billion Howard Terminal ballpark project includes a 35,000-seat baseball stadium and event venue at the Howard Terminal site, up to 3,000 new residential units, up to 1,500,000 square feet of new office/commercial uses, 270,000 square feet of retail uses, a 3,500-seat indoor performance venue for events, and 400 hotel rooms.
Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao celebrated the ruling in a prepared statement, coming just hours before the A’s Opening Day matchup Thursday evening at RingCentral Coliseum against the Los Angeles Angels.
“What a way to celebrate opening day! This is great news for Oakland residents and fans throughout the Bay Area. Today’s unanimous decision once again confirms that the City not only complied with the law but undertook a thorough and thoughtful environmental analysis of the A’s potential ballpark development at Howard Terminal.
Opponents said the EIR failed to consider alternatives to the Howard Terminal site or assess impacts of the project. The suit had also asked the court to find that the government officials involved abused their discretion in certifying the EIR.
“Oakland will continue upgrading our infrastructure so we can support sustainable and resilient communities and promote economic development. And we are now one step closer to reaching our goals. Now that two courts have ruled in favor of the City, we hope we can all come together for the betterment of Oakland,” the mayor said.