oakland -- The Port of Oakland and a team led by Phil Tagami have failed to negotiate a development contract to rebuild half of the former Army Base, putting in doubt the developer's dream to control all aspects of the transformation of the former World War II-era terminal.

Since July 2009, the Port has been negotiating exclusively with a team composed of AMB Property Corp., an international heavyweight known locally for its development of Pier 1 in San Francisco, and Oakland-based California Capital Group, of which Tagami is managing partner, to develop 168 acres of the former base land for maritime uses.

However, the exclusive negotiating period to craft a development contract expired in November, opening the door for other interested developers to market their ideas to the port, said Marilyn Sandifur, port spokeswoman.

"Given the complexity of this project and the mix of elements involved, we have opened up the discussions to additional firms," Sandifur wrote in an e-mail. "It's possible that we may work with several partners on the different aspects of the redevelopment. AMB/CCG will continue to be a part of these conversations."

The team is also in exclusive negotiations with the city of Oakland to come to terms for a development deal to rebuild 108 acres on its side of the base.


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The negotiating deadline was scheduled to expire next month but has been extended until April 23, Tagami said.

Tagami said previously his team bid on both jobs because there are economies that can be realized, especially in the massive amount of new infrastructure needed before any development can occur on either parcel.

He said Thursday that his team "has not left the table," and continues to pursue his dream of "one project, one vision, one team" for the Army base. He will continue to be involved with the port project despite the absence of an exclusive negotiating agreement and the possible addition of other developers in the project.

"We're committed," Tagami said. "We've made a lot of progress and solved a lot of issues, but not all."

Construction of the Oakland Army Base began in 1941 and was completed in 1946. It served as a major West Coast hub for cargo bound for Europe and Asia during World War II and the Korean War, and thousands of soldiers headed to Korea and Vietnam shipped out there. The base was decommissioned in 1995 and the military pulled out in 1999.

The city and the port took title to their share of the land on Aug. 7, 2006.

The Board of Port Commissioners selected the AMB/CCG team from three applicants who provided conceptual proposals for the design and construction of maritime-related and rail facilities at the former base and who defined how such development would be financed, operated and maintained under a master lease model.

The team was highly ranked in large part because of AMB's extensive experience with international and domestic port developments, and its financial capability to raise capital for the project. California Capital brings experience with local planning and permitting requirements, especially as it pertains to complex sites that require coordination with local, state and federal regulatory agencies.