Op-ed

Dear Editor:

I am the co-owner-operator of Bladium Sports & Fitness Club at Alameda Point. We moved our business from San Francisco to Alameda over 15 years ago, and have grown to one of the largest employers at Alameda Point. Our facility hosts thousands of visitors each week and employs over 120 people.

We have been proud to operate at Alameda Point and can only continue if significant upgrades come to this part of the Island.

Every December for the past 40-plus years, members of the Alameda Family Services League have put on the Holiday Home Tour, the major fundraiser for Alameda Family Services. Since the home tour involves so many moving parts (five homes, the gourmet shop, boutique, tea, raffle, van transportation, volunteers, selling tickets, docents, musicians, Santas, publishing the home tour booklet, soliciting advertisers and sponsors …), one might expect that many people are involved.

I am proud to call Alameda my new home. However, when attending the January 6 Alameda City Council meeting, I watched in shock as our newly sworn council, led by a mayor who promised “openness” and “transparency,” saw no issue with holding a three-hour discussion on the already approved Del Monte project with no new information available in print, by staff, or by the requestor of the item, Mayor Trish Spencer.

Boy Scouts from Alameda Troop 3 were excited to volunteer at the Alameda Food Bank over the holidays.

With the transition in city administration, there have been letters regarding the legacy of outgoing Mayor Marie Gilmore. In the recent letter to the editor titled “How I’ll Remember Mayor Gilmore,” Rion Cassidy describes a City Council meeting in early December when the development of Site A at Alameda Point was considered and the process by which the meeting took place. There were more than 50 citizens who asked to give their opinion to the council that evening, and Mayor Gilmore chose to give everyone the chance to share their views in turn, with the session running well past midnight.

Imagine you operate a business at Alameda Point. During Thanksgiving weekend, you lost power for 30 hours and experienced total failure of your telecom and internet service during the busiest shopping weekend of the year. The fact that 60 other businesses at Alameda Point shared your pain was no consolation. Several weeks before the power failure, a major water line break resulted in decreased water pressure to your business. These are the latest in a series of infrastructure mishaps you’ve endured in recent years.

In this season of thanksgiving, I would like to thank the many in our community who supported Alameda students and teachers through the Alameda Education Foundation’s Adopt A Classroom program.

Dear Editor:

Tim Lewis Communities wishes to respond to Mr. D’Amico’s letter in the Alameda Sun regarding truck activity at the Del Monte warehouse, which we understand has been a nuisance to neighbors.

To clarify, Tim Lewis Communities is not the owner of the Del Monte warehouse; DAMCO leases space from the current owner. Tim Lewis Communities is in contract to purchase the property and currently has a plan before the city to transform the site into an updated mixed-use development with housing, walkable retail and a revitalized waterfront. Our plan will permanently eliminate truck activity and traffic to and from the warehouse.

On November 4, almost two in three Alameda voters passed Measure I, a facilities bond that will provide $179.5 million for our community’s schools. This result means the economic health of our school district’s facilities, and our entire community will be greatly improved. This letter is simply to say thank you to all those who voted for the bond, and a special thanks to all of those who contributed to the Measure I campaign: Thank you.

Since the former Naval Air Station closed in 1997 and the Alameda community lost over 15,000 jobs, developers have come and gone with their ideas of what Alameda Point should become. Recently, the city took control over the planning process and worked closely with the community to document and adopt the community’s vision of what it wants to see at the former base: a mixed-use transit-oriented community that replaces lost jobs and creates world-class waterfront park amenities.