ALAMEDA -- About a dozen Bayport residents told the Planning Board at its Tuesday meeting they are opposed to parts, if not all, of the proposals near their neighborhood for a late-night hamburger chain, a 24-hour Safeway and even the sign design welcoming people to Alameda.
A Chase bank with ATMs at Willie Stargell Avenue and Webster Street is also included in the proposal, and a 24-hour Safeway gas station and mini-mart. The businesses would be near the Target store, which is currently being built at Alameda Landing retail center. That store is slated to open in October.
Safeway's hours of operation haven't yet been approved; they require a public hearing and planning board approval.
Alameda Landing is located on 77 acres near the estuary with plans for 275 condominiums and single-family homes and a 23-unit affordable apartment building.
The 285,000 square-foot Target store is projected to employ about 200 people. The Safeway is proposed for 45,000 square feet and about 400,000 square feet of office space is also planned.
Bayport critics say the Catellus Development Corp. proposal needs to be revamped to bring the buildings back away from the vision line of neighbors, some of whom will have a view from their decks of the red, neon-like lights of an In-N-Out burger shop, residents said. Others say the eatery will draw College of Alameda students across busy Atlantic Avenue, creating safety risks for the pedestrians and drivers alike. Residents also said the popular burger chain, which includes drive-through lanes, will clog traffic.
Ron Foley, real estate manager for In-N-Out, said the shop would hire between 50 and 75 employees from the community. Wages start above minimum wage, from $9.50 per hour up. He said the 65-year-old chain has the lowest employee turnover in the industry.
Board member David Burton noted there is not information on projections about weekend peak traffic to the businesses, and that the monthly antique fair already drives plenty of traffic to and from the tubes. He commented no one came to the meeting to talk about the traffic study. He wanted to know what percentage of In-N-Out customers will come from on and off the Island.
Foley said the company doesn't have any specific studies about that.
Andrew Thomas, the city's planning services manager, said there are no answers, but he absolutely expects some shoppers come from downtown Oakland and Jack London Square, where residential complexes are close to Alameda Landing.
In addition to two drive-through lanes at In-N-Out Burger, which would operate until 1 a.m. Sumday through Thursday and 1:30 a.m. Friday and Saturday, the bank would have two drive-thru ATMs, and the gas station would operate 24 hours with nine pumps and a kiosk.
The board is scheduled to act on the developer's recommendations July 8, but planner John Knox-White said that is not enough time to take all of the concerns under serious consideration nor time enough to study modificiations.
Board member Stanley Tang noted the South Shore Safeway gas station is always crowded, and exiting traffic pours onto Otis Drive, rather than toward back to the shopping center. A Catellus representative said the Alameda Landing gas station is configured so cars can re-enter the shopping area.
College of Alameda President Janett Jackson told the board with the $30 million in renovations the campus will be undergoing, there are safety concerns regarding the traffic congestion, esthetics and of the safety of students who will be inclined to cross Altantic Avenue at a convenient route to the center, rather than the crosswalk located several blocks away.