For many years the East Bay Regional Park District has carefully nurtured Alameda’s Crown Memorial State Beach. It reaches from Broadway to Crown Harbor. Over one million visitors enjoy it annually. Youngsters learn about nature at Crab Cove, others windsurf, families picnic, many of us just walk and enjoy the Bay and wildlife.
In 2007, the Park District expressed interest in acquiring federal surplus property on McKay Avenue adjacent to Crab Cove (a block from Webster Street) when the federal government announced in 2006 that it no longer needed this 3.89-acre parcel. Soon thereafter voters approved funds for the acquisition when they voted for Measure WW in 2008. The site is ideal for expanding parkland and providing better access to the heavily used visitors’ center, picnic grounds, and beach.
A problem occurred in July 2012 when the Alameda City Council rezoned the property from administrative/office to multifamily residential. The Park District sued the city, but the city council refused to changed the zoning. After citizens gathered enough signatures to place rezoning the property as open space on the ballot, the city council adopted it.
The Park District has since settled its lawsuit against the City of Alameda and the housing developer defaulted on its contract to purchase the property. The GSA prevailed in its eminent domain action to seize the street leading to the property, but opted to return the street to the state and sell the property to the East Bay Regional Park District.
The Friends of Crown Beach will monitor developments and keep you informed.
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