Berkeley Lab Update: New Racetrack Plan Includes Hotel, 70% Open Space

Open houses with developers at Golden Gate Fields will continue on Monday nights. A city task force on the endeavor will continue on Sundays, with a schedule to be determined as materials become available.

A new plan by developers at to be selected as the second campus for Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory was met with applause Monday night by dozens of Albany residents. 

The plan includes increased open space and a 12-story hotel just east of Fleming Point in Albany.

More than 80 people attended two sessions Monday night hosted by Golden Gate Fields developers to unveil the new plan. 

"Thank you for responding to the needs of Albany," said former Mayor Allan Maris. "We tout ourselves as a green community. This is bringing green technology to our Green Corridor. We will be a hub of green technology. You're giving us park and open space. You're listening to us, so thank you very much."

Golden Gate Fields is one of six finalists in the running to become the second campus site; Berkeley Lab has set the end of November as its deadline for making its choice.

(Read more about the project and selection process on Albany Patch here.)

Monday night's presentation is attached here as a PDF.

The site plan is the second iteration of designs that have been in the works for the past several months. Development manager Wei Chiu said there likely will be two more versions of the plan, though changes are slated to be small in comparison with what was presented Monday. 

The plan includes 70 percent open space in Albany, up from 60 percent in the last version of the development. Berkeley's open space is listed as 40 percent, or 11.6 acres.

Albany's open space is set to include a nearly 40-acre waterfront park; a 22.2-acre Codornices Creek wooded area; a 7.5-acre north-south promenade through the open campus; and 5.4 acres of east-west connectors from one side of the site to the other. 

Also new to the plan is a 12-story hotel and conferencing center just east of Fleming Point. A second hotel is planned on the Berkeley side of the development.

Building heights throughout the site have been reduced, said architect Steve Guest. Many of the structures would reach 65 feet, with several on the site reaching 90 feet. 

A parking podium that was proposed to cover the majority of the site has been removed due to Berkeley Lab concerns about costs; parking instead will be situated around the site in garages. A "four-tray" parking structure is planned for the east side of Fleming Point, which will be covered by usable park land. (This endeavor would be part of later development phases of the project.)

A single road that formerly split the property has been redesigned to circle the development, giving vast Bay views and a more impressive "entry experience."

Read more about the process for selecting the proposed second campus of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory on Albany Patch here.

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Everybody makes mistakes ... ! If there's something in this article you think should be corrected, or if something else is amiss, call editor Emilie Raguso at 510-459-8325 or email her at emilier@patch.com.

michael randolph October 13, 2011 at 11:43 PM
Paul I am talking right now add a new factory you'll like that too?
michael randolph October 13, 2011 at 11:48 PM
By the way all that pee and poo gets turned into mushrooms for people to eat. Pretty green, yup !
Emilie Raguso October 14, 2011 at 12:35 AM
New task force meeting coming Sunday: http://patch.com/E-hVx8
Caryl O'Keefe October 14, 2011 at 01:29 AM
Mr. Ruddy, my guess is that there could be a developer-sponsored Measure C initiative for the Racetrack replacement proposal if LBNL needs to know - sooner than an EIR could be done - the results of a Measure C vote. If so, that initiative should require a full EIR, at developer expense. There's recent precedent: the Albany waterfront initiative that circulated in 2006 did not have a prior EIR. It addressed environmental impacts by requiring a subsequent EIR (unfortunately, at taxpayer expense.) Many who claim environmentalist status supported that 2006 initiative enthusiastically. There are other "shoulds," but space is limited and I think this addresses your questions. What "shoulds" are important to you, Mr Ruddy?
Gary Erwin November 18, 2011 at 09:53 PM
Send the Race Track and the factory to Dixon. We could use them both.


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