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File #: 2016-2868   
Type: Regular Agenda Item
Body: Planning Board
On agenda: 5/9/2016
Title: Study Session to Provide Direction on Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal Design
Attachments: 1. Exhibit 1, 2. Exhibit 2, 3. Exhibit 1-A

Title

 

Study Session to Provide Direction on Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal Design

 

Body

 

CITY OF ALAMEDA

                     Memorandum

 

To:                                          Honorable President and

                                          Members of the Planning Board

 

From:                                          Jennifer Ott, Base Reuse Director

                                          Michelle Giles, Redevelopment Project Manager, Base Reuse

                                           

Date:                                          May 9, 2016

Re:                     Study Session to Provide Direction on Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal Design

 

DISCUSSION

 

On April 5, 2016, the City Council approved the Seaplane Lagoon (SPL) Ferry Terminal Plan (Exhibit 1), adopted a CEQA Addendum and approved a Memorandum of Understanding with the Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA) for future ferry service at SPL Ferry Terminal.  The City Council staff report is attached as Exhibit 2.

 

Staff is bringing this item to the Planning Board as an information item to update the Planning Board on the current status of the ferry terminal and to receive comments and suggestions on conceptual terminal and landside plans which will be before the Planning Board for design review and other entitlements at a later date.  The Planning Board’s review and comments will also be helpful, as the ferry terminal project will go before the Bay Conservation Development Commission (BCDC) Design Review Board for permit review at its meeting in June. 

 

For the City, a new ferry service, which is included in its planning documents for Alameda Point, creates a transit hub at the heart of Alameda Point, which maximizes opportunities for Alameda Point residents and employers/employees to be transit users.   This minimizes potential traffic impacts and significantly increases the possibility of attracting major commercial users to Alameda Point.  Both developer finalists interested in the Site B “commercial only” request for qualifications mentioned the new ferry terminal as a crucial component of marketing and attracting a major business user to Alameda Point. 

 

For Alameda Point Partners (APP), the new ferry service helps it minimize peak-hour vehicle trips and comply with the trip reduction goals in the Site A TDM Compliance Strategy.  It also attracts retailers, commercial users and residents, which translates into greater market demand for the development and higher property values.  The new ferry service is an important component of APP’s marketing and business plan for the successful implementation of the Site A development.

 

For WETA, the new ferry terminal locates service within walking distance of a major development, which will maximize demand for its services from the residents and employees located at Alameda Point.  It creates new parking facilities (currently a 400-space parking lot is planned at Alameda Point) for existing residents since available parking at the Main Street Terminal is close to reaching capacity.  It also allows WETA to easily coordinate the Main Street and Seaplane Lagoon services as one West End service (i.e., boats can be moved in and out of both terminals) to meet shifting demands from each terminal and from Oakland, creating long-term flexibility for WETA, without compromising the viability of the Oakland service. A Seaplane Lagoon terminal also positions WETA for an increase in service in the Transbay corridor, where the ferry is one of the best options given capacity limitations on the bridge and BART.

The new ferry terminal is located in Site B, but will be constructed with the Site A development, contingent on funding availability. Ideally, the ferry terminal would be completed within a year of the first residents living at Site A. Those residents would walk less than ¼ mile to the new ferry service. Temporary landside access improvements from the Ferry Terminal to Site A would include an improved Ferry Point Road with new paving, painting and striping for transit, bike and pedestrian circulation to and from the ferry terminal.  Other improvements include a 400-space parking lot, bus stop, seating and storm water improvements.  Once Site B is developed, the terminal buildout will include permanent improvements and circulation features as envisioned by the Town Center and Waterfront Precise Plan (Town Center Plan), including: increased bus terminal infrastructure, larger ferry passenger waiting area with additional amenities, relocated ferry parking and comprehensive development and promenade space and landscaping along the Eastern Waterfront consistent with the Town Center Plan (<https://alamedaca.gov/sites/default/files/document-files/department-files/Community-Development/open_space_landscape_and_sustainability.pdf>).

 

The cost of the ferry terminal is $18.2 million and while Alameda Point Partners (APP) will contribute $10 million under its Disposition and Development Agreement with the City, there is still a funding gap of $8.2 to construct the terminal, $16 million to procure a vessel and a $2.8M per year operating subsidy that must be funded before service can begin. The City, AC Transit and WETA are jointly applying for Federal TIGER grant funds and will be partnering to secure other funding sources.

 

Staff requests that the Board review the preliminary designs attached as Exhibits A-Q of Exhibit 1 - Ferry Terminal Plan and provide comments and suggestions on what will be important considerations at future Design Review hearings. This item is for information purposes only.  No action is requested.

 

 

 

 

ENVIRONMENTAL REVIEW

 

On April 5, 2016, the City of Alameda adopted an Addendum to the Certified Final Environmental Impact Report for the Alameda Point Project for a New Ferry Terminal at the Seaplane Lagoon at Alameda Point.  No further environmental review is necessary.

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

Hold a Planning Board study session on the Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal to provide direction and suggestions for the design of the terminal and landside improvements.

 

Respectfully Submitted,

Jennifer Ott, Chief Operating Officer - Alameda Point

 

Exhibits:

1.                          Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal Plan (Exhibits A - Q)

2.                          April 5, 2016 City Council Report