OAKLAND — The city will enter a 360-day negotiating period to hammer out details with the AMB/CCG development team on its plans for as much as 135 acres of the former Oakland Army Base after the City Council unanimously selected the team Tuesday.
The council's decision, though expected, came after more than two hours' debate and questioning on whether AMB/CCG or Federal Oakland Associates was the better team for the project and what the city's priorities would be during the negotiation period.
AMB/CCG, whose managing partner is Rotunda and Fox Theater developer Phil Tagami, presented a plan built on logistics and industrial uses to support the Port of Oakland. Federal Oakland Associates, whose local partner is residential developer Michael Johnson, planned logistics space but also devoted a large portion to retail.
Councilmember Ignacio De La Fuente (Glenview-Fruitvale) said that though there are a number of locations in Oakland to put retail — he mentioned Upper Broadway, Mandela Parkway and Jack London Square — the base's proximity to the port made AMB/CCG's plan the better option. "I believe we have an incredible asset in the port," he said.
De La Fuente and Councilmember Nancy Nadel (Downtown-West Oakland), who participated in Tuesday's meeting by telephone from Jamaica, were two strong supporters of AMB/CCG.
Councilmember Larry Reid (Elmhurst-East Oakland) pushed earlier this month to put off a vote until September but deferred to Nadel, whose district includes the former base. Reid said no other council member "has put the time and energy" into "representing the best interests of the city" when it comes to the former Army base.
The AMB/CCG team is also in exclusive negotiations with the Port of Oakland to develop the port's 168-acre portion of the base.
Reach Kelly Rayburn at 510-208-6435.