ALAMEDA -- The public can weigh in on a developer's proposal to build homes at the site of the Harbor Bay Club when the Planning Board gathers comments Monday on what a draft environmental impact report for the project should contain.
Along with the construction of 80 single-family homes, developer Ron Cowan's Harbor Bay Isle Associates wants to replace the fitness club with an expanded facility at the Harbor Bay Business Park.
Some neighbors of the club are against the proposal, saying it will generate too much traffic and cause other problems. But others, including property owners at the business park, support it.
The comments that the board will gather Monday will help set the scope of the draft EIR, which should be completed within about three to six months, City Planner Andrew Thomas said.
Additional public hearings will take place, including on the findings of a final EIR, before the City Council will consider possibly approving the project, Thomas said.
The current health and fitness club at 200 Packet Landing Road sits on 12 acres and features a spa, a 25-meter heated swimming pool and 19 tennis courts.
Cowan's proposal to build homes on the property comes more than a year after the City Council rejected his plan to build up to 130 homes on a portion of the city-owned Chuck Corica Golf Complex in exchange for 12 acres at the business park for public sports fields.
Harbor Bay Neighbors, a group campaigning against the current proposal, say the fitness club cannot be relocated because city officials originally approved it as a replacement for a recreation center for local homeowner associations, and that the club's primary purpose has been to serve Harbor Bay residents.
But supporters of the current plan say nearby residents could still use the new facility and that its proposed location is within the bounds of Harbor Bay's original master plan.
Marcy Marks of the Harbor Bay Business Park Association said in an Oct. 11 letter to the Planning Board that the proposal to build the fitness club at the park enjoys "widespread support" among its members. More than 80 companies, including a Peets Coffee & Tea roasting and packaging facility, are located in the park and employ 5,000 people.
The association backs the developer's proposal because a fitness club "will provide a conveniently located facility for employees of companies in the business park and also help attract companies into the business park," Marks said.
The new fitness club would feature multiple pools and other amenities and would be built on about nine acres on North Loop Road near the Chinese Christian School and the KinderCare Learning Center. Zoning and other issues prevent the developer from building the proposed 80 homes at the park.
If city officials approve the plan, the current club would remain open until the new facility is built, when work would then begin on the homes.
Reach Peter Hegarty at 510-748-1654 or follow him on Twitter.com/Peter_Hegarty.
The Planning Board will meet at 7 p.m. Monday in the Council Chambers at City Hall, 2263 Santa Clara Ave.