ALAMEDA -- The Planning Board has approved plans for a drive-through window and extended hours for an In-N-Out Burger just outside the Posey Webster Tube, despite some concerns expressed by nearby residents that the project could cause traffic problems and become a magnet for crime.

The extended hours of operation for the In-N-Out Burger will be until 12:30 a.m. Sundays through Thursdays and until 1:30 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays.

The board also approved a drive-through lane for a Chase Bank and a 24-hour Safeway gas station on the 2.3-acre parcel at Willie Stargell Avenue and Webster Street, which is being developed as part of the mixed-use Alameda Landing project.

The board is next expected to review designs for the buildings Aug. 12.

Alameda Landing is on 77 acres of what was once a supply center for the former Alameda Naval Air Station near the Oakland-Alameda Estuary and will feature 275 single-family homes and condominiums and a 25-unit affordable apartment complex.

Along with the homes, the project will include a retail center that will include a Safeway and a Target store, which is set to open in October.

While the board unanimously approved the drive-through lane and extended hours for the In-N-Out Burger near the College of Alameda on Monday, as well as a drive-through lane for the Chase bank and extended hours for the Safeway gas station, the approval hinged on securing backing from Caltrans to build a crosswalk near the project.


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City Planner Andrew Thomas said he expects state officials will support the crosswalk, would help link the site with the nearby college.

"In the event we don't get it, the pedestrian access is not going to be very convenient because the pedestrians will have to walk around it," Thomas said.

The board's decision Monday follows a June 24 workshop in which some residents said they feared the drive-through lanes could cause traffic congestion, especially during commute hours, and that allowing the fast food chain to stay open late could lead to crime. An online petition opposing the project garnered more than 500 signatures.

But Sean Whiskeman of Catellus Development Corp., which is behind the Alameda Landing project, told the board that private security will police the businesses.

City officials also noted that crime data from neighborhoods around the Bridgeside and Alameda South Shore shopping centers, which each have businesses with extended hours, did not show that commercial uses near residential areas causes an increase in crime.

Traffic studies also indicate that the drive-through lanes planned for In-N-Out Burger and at the Chase bank will not impede traffic, including on Webster Street, Thomas said.

On Monday, the board also heard that city officials are working with Catellus to make the area just outside the Webster Tube more attractive since it's a "gateway" for motorists arriving on the Island from Oakland.

David Gates of Gates & Associates, a landscape architecture firm, said the proposals include planting trees and the construction of a low wall to replace the metal barrier that currently borders the street.

Reach Peter Hegarty at 510-748-1654 or follow him on Twitter.com/Peter_Hegarty.

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