The City of San Leandro is in the process of developing approximately 75 acres of its 950 acres of publicly owned shoreline.
On April 3, 2017, Cal-Coast Development presented an update on the Monarch Bay Shoreline Development Project to the City Council. New designs for the project incorporate some notable changes, including the removal of buildings from the outer shoreline area and enhancement of park space in these areas, as well as the elimination of office space from the project.
Over the past year, the City and Cal-Coast Development have been working with the Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) to ensure that the plans developed over the years with significant input from the community meet BCDC's regulations. The changes are largely the result of BCDC's requirement that the project plan for anticipated sea level rise of 65 inches. The mandate that the project raise the building floor an additional 30+ inches resulted in construction costs that were prohibitively high along the outer shoreline area.
The new design offers more open space and there is a general consensus that the project has been improved. The new design maintains the 200-room hotel, half of which will be a Hyatt Place and the other half a Hyatt Home, two new restaurants, a 7,000 square foot banquet facility, an apartment complex, single family and town houses. Additional park land for outdoor activities is provided, as well as a pedestrian promenade and bike lanes that connect the bay trail.
The Shoreline Development is a net-zero, mixed use project that plans to furnish Electric Vehicle charging stations in the parking facilities and pull San Leandro's dark fiber to enable opportunities for public Wi-Fi.
Summary of current project proposal
The development process includes significant input from the Community. In 2008 a Shoreline Citizens Advisory Committee (Shoreline CAC) commenced its first meeting and met at the Marina Inn on select Wednesdays at 7 P.M. over the course of three years. Meetings were open to the public and all community members were invited to attend and provide input. The Shoreline CAC fulfilled its mission and was disbanded in the Spring of 2011. Read more information on the background and history of the Shoreline CAC including meeting highlights and past presentations.
Moving into the next stage of development, a Shoreline Advisory Group (SAG) was formed to continue to provide valuable community input on the Shoreline Development as it moves forward. The SAG is comprised of 21 CAC members who expressed an interest in continuing. Three new members of the community who demonstrated an expertise in design and architecture were added in November 2012. Read more information on the SAG, including highlights and presentations.
The vision for the development is a comprehensive master plan for the Shoreline area that:
On July 20, 2015, the City Council adopted a resolution certifying the Environmental Impact Report for the Shoreline Development Project along with the required findings and reports (Mitigation Findings, Findings Concerning Alternatives, Statement of Overriding Considerations and a Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program). The Council also adopted resolutions to amend the General Plan Land Use Designation and rezone a portion of the site.
These actions mark and important step in moving the project forward. Links to individual chapters of the Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR) for the San Leandro Shoreline Development Project can be found below:
The Draft Environmental Impact Report (Draft EIR) for the San Leandro Shoreline Development Project assessed the potential environmental impacts of the proposed project and examined the full range of potential environmental impacts based on the eighteen resource topic areas which included, but were not limited to, the following environmental topics:
Links to individual chapters of the Draft EIR can be found below.
A map of the adopted General Plan Land Use Map Amendment for the Shoreline Development Area which changed the land use of approximately 12 acres on the golf course to RM - Residential is below.
A map of the Zoning Map Amendments for the Shoreline Development Area which zoned the area West of Monarch Bay Drive CC - Community Commercial and two areas on the current golf course as RM - 2000 Residential, both with a Planned Development Overlay, is below.
For more than fifteen years now, the City of San Leandro has made numerous attempts to develop the blighted former Boat Works and Blue Dolphin sites. These once vital sites are currently in disrepair and represent a missed opportunity. The community’s vision for the shoreline includes redeveloping these sites with attractive and desirable amenities available to all San Leandro residents. Additionally, Federal grant funding to off-set the costs of necessary dredging of the two-mile channel which keeps the boat harbor navigable has dried up. Faced with significant budget shortfalls and no readily available funding for further dredging, the City Council is hopeful that landside development will help fund redevelopment of the boat harbor basin.
Development will occur on an approximately 40-acre portion of the 1,800 acre publically-owned shoreline. Development is concentrated at the Horatio’s, Marina Inn, El Torito and former Blue Dophin and former Boat Works sites. Marina Park, the par course, the championship golf course, the shoreline trail and marshes, etc. will remain as is. The Monarch Bay executive golf course will be retained and is proposed to be retained. To view the development area please click here.
In 2006 and 2007, the City evaluated how to best approach development at the shoreline. Past development efforts involved identifying the three main development sites and requesting proposals. The three sites were: 1- the former Boat Works site which currently fenced off; 2- the former Blue Dolphin site which is also fenced off; 3- the former boat launch site just north of El Torito. Although hotels and restaurants were proposed, final designs completed and City funding dedicated, in the end in each instance the developer was unable to obtain financing because they were unable to create necessary synergy between the uses to ensure that their project would be successful. In other words, the risk was too high. To mitigate the risk, the City Council decided on a master developer approach to allow complementary uses, the ability to phase a project and to encourage sufficient development to fund the needed infrastructure.
A Request for Qualifications was issued in 2008, and developers were evaluated on the following criteria:
Following review of the proposals and interviews with the interested and qualified development teams, interviews with other communities, reference checks, and a preliminary analysis of financial strength, the City Council concluded that Cal Coast Development, LLC would be the best developer. While numerous teams were qualified, Cal Coast has extensive experience in the type of development that will likely occur. Additionally, Cal Coast has completed numerous long-term politically-sensitive projects.
Edward (Ed) J. Miller, of Cal-Coast Development, may be reached at email@example.com or (310) 544-5900.
In October 2008, following a Request for Qualifications process, the City entered into an Exclusive Negotiating Rights Agreement (Original ENRA) with Cal Coast Development, LLC (Cal Coast) for the master development of approximately 40-acres along San Leandro’s shoreline. The agreement was for an initial term of 18 months, and the option to extend an additional 18 months was exercised in June 2010. The agreement terminated as of October 20, 2011.
Over the past three years Cal Coast has worked in partnership with the City and an approximately 33 member Shoreline Development Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) to develop a Conceptual Master Plan for the shoreline area.
A new Exclusive Negotiating Rights Agreement (ENRA) to proceed with the design, entitlement and negotiations necessary to bring the Conceptual Master Plan to fruition has been negotiated and was brought to City Council for action on April 2, 2012. The ENRA does not commit the City to approving the entitlements or leasing the land to Cal Coast. The ENRA does outline Cal Coast’s and the City’s responsibilities in terms of moving forward with developing the shoreline consistent with the Conceptual Master Plan. The City, as the property owner, and the Citizens Advisory Committee will be involved in this approximately three year process. Additional Town Hall meetings and Council work sessions will occur over the next few years to gain community input.
The City Council Shoreline Committee meetings were opened to the public in 2007 To date, 25 committee meetings have been held along with six Town Hall meetings and five City Council work sessions.
To ensure the proposed development reflects the desires of the community at large, a Shoreline Development Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) was established following an application process. The CAC includes city-wide and stakeholder representation. The CAC has met 16 times over the past two and a half years, attended Town Hall meetings and provided guidance to the developer. The proposed Conceptual Master Plan is based on CAC input and supported by the CAC. The proposed Conceptual Master Plan is based on CAC input and supported by the CAC. In the Spring of 2012 the CAC was dismissed. Moving into the next stage of development, a Shoreline Advisory Group (SAG) was formed to continue to provide valuable community input on the Shoreline Development as it moves forward. The SAG is comprised of 21 CAC members who expressed an interest in continuing. Three new members of the community who demonstrated an expertise in design and architecture will be added in November 2012. The agendas, presentations, reports and highlights from the Shorline-Marina Committee meetings, Town Hall meetings and CAC meetings are available on the City's website as well as relevant consultant reports and studies.
The CAC, selected by the City Council, worked diligently to learn about the challenges and opportunities for development at the shoreline. Over the course more than three years, the CAC learned about past development attempts, the finances of the Shoreline Enterprise Fund, results from a statistically significant public opinion poll regarding revenue for dredging the marina, potential traffic impacts from development, and environmental constraints. The CAC created development concepts which Cal Coast used as a starting point in developing a master plan for the area. Cal Coast incorporated CAC input in the various discussion plans created and in the design elements.
Although not originally included as part of the CAC’s mission, the City Council requested CAC assistance in evaluating a plan for the redevelopment of the boat harbor basin. The CAC evaluated Cal Coast’s financial feasibility study in order to make a recommendation for basin redevelopment.
The CAC reached the end of its mission in the Spring of 2012. At that time the Council determined that a citizens advisory group would continue to be valuable in defining the Master Plan. Therefore, the Council invited members of the CAC to carry on their work in a newly formed Shoreline Adivsory Group (SAG). Exhibiting dedication to the project and plan, 21 members of the CAC volunteered to continue their work. During the Summer of 2012, the Council also requested interested persons with expertise in disign and/or architecture apply to join the SAG. Three new members will begin their work in November 2012.
An outline of steps taken to develop the Conceptual Master Plan follows:
The main cost of operating the boat harbor is dredging the channel and the harbor basin. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is only authorized to dredge the channel, while the City is responsible for dredging the harbor and disposing of all dredge materials. The City has successfully lobbied Congress for special federal dredging assistance in the past. This has been challenging since the San Leandro Marina does not meet the Corps funding criteria for their dredging program. Unfortunately, the Army Corp has informed the City that Federal funding is extremely limited and is now being directed to commercial harbors and levee projects and there is no longer funding available for recreational harbors like ours.
The cost of this dredging and disposal of the dredge materials is $1.5 - $2 million annually. While the berthing rates cover the costs associated with operating a boat harbor, there is no funding available for dredging, dredge material disposal or the debt service currently required on past loans to expand the harbor and loans for dredging
In 2007, the City retained Godbe Research to conduct a statistically significant public opinion poll to determine if people would be willing to approve a parcel tax to fund dredging of the boat harbor. The results showed that although people think the boat harbor is an asset, they are not willing to tax themselves to pay for it. The poll (live link) also showed that the boat harbor ranked significantly lower than other public services such as police, fire, streets, and libraries.
The recommendation from the CAC for development included a recommendation to the City to continue to operate the boat harbor for as long as feasible and then to move to the Aquatic Park option should needed funding for dredging not be found.
In 2009, the Army Corps of Engineers completed a partial dredge of the bay channel after eight years of City lobbying Congress for the funding. The partial dredge was to five feet plus one foot, as opposed to the standard dredge depth of seven feet plus one foot. The harbor was not dredged due to the lack of local funding. The City is now responsible for removing the material dredged from the channel in 2009 from the dredge disposal site. Disposal alternatives are being explored as the Shoreline Enterprise Fund does not have the approximately $2 million for transportation of the approximately 95,000 cubic yards of materials to nearby Oyster Bay Regional Park or another acceptable location
In 2010, the City and Cal Coast shared the cost of a Harbor Basin Alternative Study which provided information, including costs, of three different possibilities for the harbor basin that retained the aquatic recreational opportunities, coordinated with existing and potential landside uses and which were intended to be in equilibrium with the natural sedimentation process in the harbor. One option explored was a Marina Park Alternative which was a reduced size, approximately 200-slip, marina with dredged materials to be deposited in the harbor basin and the south basin. A natural shoreline with pedestrian promenade with vegetative transition along the western portion of basin was part of the alternative. Unfortunately, this alternative had an estimated cost to the City of $11 million plus over a 20-year period of time and therefore was not recommended. Based on the financial feasibilty study, the CAC's recommendation, affirmed by the City Council, is that the City maintain the boat harbor for as long as feasible, then move to the Aquatic Park alternative should additional revenue not be found to dredge.
The desire to retain boating activities remains strong and should funding be available in the future, boating activities will likely remain at the shoreline.
Filling in the Bay would only be approved by the Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) for projects that have substantial public benefits, such as airport runway and freeway expansions, port development, recreational opportunities, and creation of public access. The Conceptual Master Plan does not include a proposal to fill the bay; however, BCDC, who has jurisdiction over all the water-covered areas of the Bay as well as a 100-foot-wide band measured back from the shorelines, will need to permit the development.
A comprehensive environmental analysis, called an Environmental Impact Report or EIR, is a necessary next step in the process and will consider the impacts of the project. The EIR will take 18-24 months to complete and the cost will be paid by the developer. The EIR is a public document and includes a period for public review and comment.
To assist the City early on in determining development alternatives for the area, in 2007 the City retained ESA in 2007 to perform an Environmental and Regulatory Opportunities and Constraints Analysis. ESA was selected because of their expertise in environmental work and specific knowledge of the San Leandro Shoreline Marina Area.
The report includes a preliminary environmental outline of issues and related constraint levels for potential development. It provided important background information in order to determine alternative uses for the boat harbor and overall development constraints for the proposed development area
There are many regulatory agencies that will be involved with the development of the Shoreline area, such as the Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC), U.S. Army Corp of Engineers (ACOE), Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the California Department of Fish and Game, to name a few. Waterfront development is a major undertaking, with various constraints.
The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) process is very involved and is in place to ensure environmental factors are considered for the proposed master plan. (See question 14 – Has an environmental study and report been done on this current proposal?)
There is general consensus from the scientific and regulatory community that development should plan for a 16 inch rise in the sea level by 2050 and include provisions for an up to 55 inch sea level rise by 2100. The Conceptual Master Plan takes this into consideration.
The City Council Shoreline-Marina Committee meets quarterly, 4:00-5:30 pm in the Sister Cities Gallery, City Hall. Please verify that the meeting will occur by checking the Shoreline-Marina Committee agenda.
The Tony Lema 18-hole championship golf course will not be affected. The Conceptual Master Plan, however, envisions the reconfiguration of the 9-hole executive course. The original golf course architect, John Harbottle, was retained to redesign the course to provide additional developable space. The new design (Concept C of the Reconfiguration Concepts) is sensitive to maintaining the present quality and performance of the current executive course and respects the City’s ordinance which requires protection of the monarch butterflies who winter on the golf course. The reconfiguration allows for up 132 homes to be included in the Conceptual Master Plan on undeveloped land along Monarch Bay Drive, on the corner of Fairway Drive and Aurora Drive, and on land within the course after it is redesigned. American Golf Corporation, the operators of the Monarch Bay Golf course which is owned by the City, have indicated that they are amenable to allowing the course to be redesigned to allow for additional development.
No. None of the approximately 1,800 publically owned acres at the shoreline are part of a redevelopment project area.
The marina currently has a 465-berth boat harbor which is currently approximately 40% occupied.
The Marina is owned and operated by the City of San Leandro. The City has explored the possibility of leasing the marina to a private operator. There was interest; however, private operators have been unwilling to take on the dredging of the two-mile channel and the dredged materials disposal which is currently estimated to cost an average of $2 million annually. Additionally, private operators were interested in building a large dry-dock facility at the shoreline.
It is not the same developer, nor the same process.
The branch library will remain in its current location at 13699 Aurora Drive and will incorporate state-of-the-art technology in a new and slightly larger building. The Conceptual Master Plan submitted in 2012 had incorporated a community center/library closer to the shoreline; however in response to community feedback, a determination was made to keep the library in its current location. The Master Developer is proposing to build a new facility, incorporating technology to enhance and expand services.
The development of the Shoreline is a multi-year process involving significant environmental review by multiple agencies and extensive community input. The adoption of an Exclusive Negotiating Rights Agreement allowed Cal Coast to proceed with the CAC recommendation for the Conceptual Master Plan. Cal Coast Development and City Staff presented an update on the Shoreline Development to the City Council. Included in this presentation was a revised Conceptual Master Plan, dated October 2012, and tentative project schedule. The current plan encompasses slight modifications based on feedback from the Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) and concepts from CH2M Hill, the consultant retained to design basin elements based on analysis of site conditions, input from the SAG and comments from BCDC. A timeline for the project was reviewed, with highlights being: