San Jose City Council approve resolutions to support A’s move

Update 9/21 7:40 PM – Resolutions (city and redev agency) passed unanimously. Mayor Reed says that he’ll be talking to MLB COO Bob DuPuy soon to get some direction, and that he’s cautiously optimistic that he’ll get a resolution soon.

Tomorrow night, the San Jose City Council will vote on another set of resolutions (city and redevelopment agency have slightly different versions) in support of a move south. From what I can tell, the only significant language change was the recognition of recent statement of support by SVLG and 75 of its constituent CEO’s.

I will not be attending the session, but I will be monitoring it remotely. Action on the resolution is slated to be early in the agenda. If you’re interested, here’s the newest language:

RESOLUTION NO. ____

A RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SAN JOSE:
(A) REAFFIRMING THE NEGOTIATING PRINCIPLES PREVIOUSLY ESTABLISHED AND AMENDED BY THE CITY COUNCIL; AND (B) SUPPORTING THE EFFORTS OF THE OAKLAND ATHLETICS OWNERSHIP TO MOVE THE TEAM TO SAN JOSÉ AND THE ASSISTANCE OF THE SILICON VALLEY LEADERSHIP GROUP AND OTHER LOCAL GROUPS IN THEIR EFFORTS TO BRING MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL TO SAN JOSE

WHEREAS, on April 7, 2009 and August 3, 2010, the City Council and Agency Board affirmed its interest in supporting the efforts of the Oakland Athletics’ ownership to move the team to the City of San Jose; and

WHEREAS, on May 12, 2009, the City Council and Agency Board established Negotiating Principles for the development of a stadium in the Downtown for a Major League Baseball team, which were subsequently amended by Council on August 3, 2010; and

WHEREAS, on September 10, 2010, through the efforts of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, a letter from seventy five (75) of Silicon Valley’s leading CEOs was sent to Major League Baseball urging Commissioner Selig to approve the Athletics’ move to San Jose; and

WHEREAS, various local organizations, including the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce, the San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau, the San Jose Sports Authority and Baseball San Jose, have all expressed their support for the Athletics’ move to San Jose, and Lew Wolff, the Athletics’ owner, is also on record as indicating he would prefer San Jose as the new home of the Athletics; and

WHEREAS, the Council desires to reaffirm the following previously-approved Negotiating Principles that will guide the City’s efforts in bringing a Major League Baseball stadium to San Jose:

1. No new taxes are imposed to fund ballpark-related expenditures.

2. The City must determine that the ballpark development will generate a significant economic benefit to the City and have a positive impact on City General Fund revenues.

3. No public funds shall be spent to finance or reimburse any costs associated with construction of the ballpark or construction of any on-site infrastructure or improvements needed for the ballpark.

4. No public funds of any kind are spent to finance or reimburse any ballpark operational or maintenance costs related to activities conducted by or under the authority of the baseball team that uses the ballpark either at the ballpark or in the streets surrounding the ballpark.

5. No public funds shall be spent to finance or reimburse the cost of any traffic control, street cleanup, emergency or security services within the ballpark site or within the streets surrounding the ballpark that are related to activities at the ballpark conducted by or under the authority of the baseball team.

6. If the property is leased for a ballpark, the baseball team must be willing, at the end of the term of the lease, either to purchase the property at fair market value or to do one of the following things at the City’s option and at no cost to the City or the Redevelopment Agency:

a. Transfer ownership of the improvements to the City or Redevelopment Agency; or
b. Demolish the improvements and clear the site to make way for other development.

7. The entity that builds or operates the ballpark must be willing, if the City deems it appropriate, to make the ballpark available to the City during baseball’s offseason for up to 10 days per year for community-related events, at no rental charge to the City.

8. The name of the baseball team must include San Jose.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SAN JOSE:
(a)  Reaffirms the negotiating principles previously established and amended by the City Council; and
(b)  Supports the efforts of the Oakland Athletics ownership to move the team to San José and the assistance of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group and other local groups in their efforts to bring Major League Baseball to San Jose.

I don’t expect this to change unless MLB makes its own announcement, after which the resolution would be amended again. This is what we can expect until the spring election, if it occurs.

Some choice quotes from public speakers at the session tonight:

Michael Mulcahy: I’m not a San Francisco Giants fan, but I’m rooting for them to make the playoffs so that we can see how that transforms a city.

Former Mayor Susan Hammer: I’m getting a little impatient with the snail’s pace of Major League Baseball.

91 thoughts on “San Jose City Council approve resolutions to support A’s move

  1. Now, if we only had a commissioner with the common sense and courage to make the obvious decision. Unfortunately, we don’t. Bud will be content to let this fester for several more years,

  2. Uncle Fester would be a good nickname… but really, we don’t know if Selig has the votes among owners to force the issue and it’s dumb for him to bring it up if he doesn’t.

  3. Why doesn’t the Oakland City Council do such motions? /scratches head

  4. BTW – Love these stipulations, which should silence any opposition to Baseball SJ movement:

    1. No new taxes are imposed to fund ballpark-related expenditures.

    3. No public funds shall be spent to finance or reimburse any costs associated with construction of the ballpark or construction of any on-site infrastructure or improvements needed for the ballpark.

    4. No public funds of any kind are spent to finance or reimburse any ballpark operational or maintenance costs related to activities conducted by or under the authority of the baseball team that uses the ballpark either at the ballpark or in the streets surrounding the ballpark.

    5. No public funds shall be spent to finance or reimburse the cost of any traffic control, street cleanup, emergency or security services within the ballpark site or within the streets surrounding the ballpark that are related to activities at the ballpark conducted by or under the authority of the baseball team.

    And lastly the kicker, which will draw more angst from the Pro Oakland crowd:

    8. The name of the baseball team must include San Jose.

  5. Haaa I love the sound of SJ getting desparate!!!

  6. @Moe A’s: Seriously? San Jose has had the momentum for weeks. This is just how this city works, it gets all its ducks in a row. Admiringly ad nauseum sometimes, but still, they’ve been on the ball. I’m curious why you think San Jose is desperate. Are you implying Oakland is not?

  7. If Selig doesn’t have the votes, it’s obviously because the owners are too stupid to realize what a great market San Jose is. They either think it’s a city in Texas or Costa Rica or that it’s a small suburb bordering Frisco.

  8. For Moe A’s:

    The 7 Stages of Grief

    1. SHOCK & DENIAL- (“Wolf lied, he never tried” / “Oakland is going through a renaissance”)

    2. PAIN & GUILT- (“But the A’s won 4 Championship in Oakland” / “Oakland being unacceptable due to its Chocolate City status” – Note: that quote was from pro Oakland backer Josh aka Emperor Nobody and NOT me.)

    3. ANGER & BARGAINING- (“I say SJ would be like SD north” / “love the sound of SJ getting desparate[sic]!” – Moe, you are here!)

    4. “DEPRESSION”, REFLECTION, LONELINESS-

    5. THE UPWARD TURN-

    6. RECONSTRUCTION & WORKING THROUGH-

    7. ACCEPTANCE & HOPE-

  9. @Pacifico-After pissing off the commish by messing with the gold old boys club process, San Jose is throwing everything else they can to make their case, and it does appear rather desperate. I still believe that Oakland will be given one more shot. The TR’s is a can of worms BS does not want to deal with. After all, according to BS, TR’s are sacred.

  10. And when Oakland fails (a highly likely scenario), what happens? The A’s leave the Bay Area, of course…

  11. @jk-usa and Moe–I take it you prefer Oakland’s approach for the past 15+ years–do nothing—than act like your doing something when your not really doing anything (see Jeffrey’s recent post)–having yoru ducks in a row (a site, EIR, money to acquire remaining parcels, Corporate support) and showing that you have the political leadership to support the project are all things that Oakland could only wish they had. We will see in November how “desparate” (did you mean to say prepared) San Jose was.

    in terms of pissing of the Commish—that’s why he offered to pay for the ballot measure when it gets there—now that is being pissed off–

    Finally–you think the A’s will be given another chance…have you lined up that owner yet that loves Oakland so much that they are willing to give away 1B dollars of his/her own money?

  12. Yes, I’m wondering why billionaires aren’t lined up to buy the team, buy the land and build the stadium lock stock and barrel if Oakland is the fabulous baseball market that Oakland supporters say. You’d think there would be competitive bidding amongst a group of billionaires desperate to empty their wallets on a new Oakland ballpark.

    I guess I must have missed the press reports about major corporations lining up to buy naming rights for a new Oakland ballpark.

  13. Confucius once say, “Don’t feed trolls.”

  14. @jk-usa… I’d only change your post a bit. I’d say Oakland is at the tail end of it’s last shot right now. That, not a conspiracy to move the team, is what the MLB Stadium Study Panel of 2009 is all about. At this point, they have either proven San Jose is it or they haven’t.

  15. The SJ resolution doesn’t put a cap on redevelopment agency funds allocated to acquiring the site. That could be a bundle and strangle redevelopments elsewhere in the City. Seems to me they should state a cap.

  16. @Bryan Grunwald- San Jose only has an X amount of dollars in their redevelopment fund and they have stated publicly they will sell other parcels the Redevelopment Agency has if need be to purchase the remaining land for a new ballpark. Not a difficult task if needed and the cap is simply what is left in the account right now. Anything more would require the sale of other land the agency owns.

    If TR was so “sacred” then it would have been announced that San Jose has been shot down? Why wait so long to announce it? It is because Selig is going from owner to owner trying to get the necessary votes to change it as stated in the MLB charter.

    Selig would have never offered to pay for a Spring Election unless he already had about 3/4 of what he needs to make it happen. He is almost there and the SVLG letter only helps his case with the other owners as it will make their “eyes open” when they see the corporate support on top of the City Council support from San Jose.

    The Giants know this full well hence the “push polling” and “grass roots groups” they have setup. If they felt TR was “sacred” why put so much effort into this?

  17. but Jeff, they are so tasty once you fatten them up!

  18. Sort of along the same lines of what Sid is saying, the fact that MLB has expanded the purpose of the committee to include San Jose means that TR is, at a minimum, negotiable. If Selig had any intention of honoring TR he would have left the committee with it’s original purpose; to look at potential sites in Oakland. @ jk-usa, you keep saying that TR is a “can of worms”. Selig has already opened that can. Why can’t you see that?

    Regarding the fact that it is taken 18+ months to accomplish this seemingly simple undertaking, many have posted that this is how long it takes to get sufficient owner buy in. That seems unlikely to me. What seems obvious to me is that regardless of the decision BS makes, he will want to limit controversy. By giving the city of Oakland 18 months (plus several years) to put their best foot forward, he can say that every reasonable effort was made to keep the team in Oakland, but a solution could simply not be found. If he were to rush to that conclusion, he would have a steeper political hill to climb. If a new home (and financing) is found in Oakland, then Selig looks like he is responsible for getting it done. The longer the process takes, without affecting the ability to get something done, the better the situation gets for Selig and for the rest of the owners.

  19. Obviously, things are going well. It’s apparent MLB has spent 20 months looking for a stadium site in Alameda and Contra Costa counties and can’t find one. Now, they have to stand up to the bully Bill Neukom, who thinks he alone should decide whether San Jose ever has major league baseball. Truily disgusting.

  20. @pjk–and I feel things are going quite well in Alameda county, where the BRC can’t decide which of the 3 waterfront sites are the best for the A’s, but hopefully are leaning towards Victory Court. That always has a nice ring to it when read and spoken out loud– VICTORY COURT.

  21. jk-usa, that is kind of not true. Oakland has already admitted it can’t pull off JLS West because of the cost of site acquisition (it is significantly higher than Victory Court because of several factors) and Howard Terminal was rejected, for the third time, way early in the process. None of this info has been made public, because Oakland won’t talk about it and neither will the Committee. But I have it on good authority that it is Victory Court or bust.
    .
    In some respect, there is a game of chicken being played between San Jose and MLB. MLB wants a slam dunk in either city (which neither City can really promise right now) and San Jose is working to force their hand. The wrong thing to assume is that if San Jose pisses MLB off, than MLB will be in Oakland by default.
    .
    Ask yourself this question, “Why would MLB not allow Piccini and Dolich to buy the team and then turn around a decade later and push for an Oakland friendly owner?”
    .
    There aren’t too many answers that really make sense. I am willing to hear them if you have one.
    .
    Like I said, I am 100% fine if the A’s end up in Oakland. I’d prefer it was the I980 or JLS West site… though both have been dismissed for one reason or another. I am not so sure MLB shares my feelings, and most evidence points to one simple answer… They don’t. The longer this drags on, the less likely they will be in Oakland past 2014.
    .
    I can really only speculate about MLB’s motivations and handicapping where a stadium will go. But ask yourself one more question, “If Victory Court was really a site MLB preferred, why would it take 18 months to say so? Why would Bob DuPuy be talking to San Jose, at all?”
    .
    There aren’t too many answers that make sense.
    .
    I am not comfortable saying there is no way the team stays in Oakland. I am comfortable saying that Oakland’s “last chance” has been on the clock for 18 months and the fact that there hasn’t been a public embracing of any particular site by MLB speaks to the fact that the clock is running out.

  22. OK, I heard from a good source that MLB can’t find a site in Oakland. So there you have it. Unless a volcano erupts in the Bay and produces some waterfront property, Oakland is likely to lose the A’s.

  23. I’m hoping the TR issue will be discussed and passed at the upcoming winter meetings. That should set the stage for a vote in March. From there, 3 years of planning and construction.
    .
    Hard to believe that it’s been nearly 2 years since Selig sent Wolff that letter. Two years of marching in place.

  24. I know – since San Jose is – I don’t know – several hours away from Oakland, maybe A’s fans in the Oakland area can petition Southwest Airlines to institute new Oakland-to-San Jose flights on game days?

  25. “OK, I heard from a good source that MLB can’t find a site in Oakland. So there you have it.” Who is the source? You can’t just say a “source” and expect it to hold water on here.

  26. Can’t give any more information than that. That’s why I’ve held onto this information for weex. But really this is all obvious, anyway. If MLB had a site in Oakland, they would have announced it instead of letting this thing drag on for years and years. it’s obvious there are no suitable sites after 20 months of looking.

    As stated above, why would MLB even be talking to San Jose, given the territorial rights nonsense and the Giants holding onto them like spoiled children, f Oakland had something viable?

    And who determines what “holds water here” anyway?

  27. Nobdy, but it would help your point if there was more information on it. Anyone could say they have a good source on something.

  28. @ Ralph and pjk, As you can tell from many of the stories we write here, sources are important for us. I have only shared the name of a single source on the web site and that was with his permission (Bryan Grunwald).
    .
    The tricky thing about sources can be that we get conflicting information. In the case of the recent pieces I wrote about Oakland, I spoke to more than a handful of people and was able to verify all of the information I published with multiple, independent sources.
    .
    I, too, have been told by a single source that MLB is done with Oakland. I have also been told by other sources that MLB is very close to pushing Victory Court on Wolff. The key is, that in both cases, I can’t find anyone outside of the the original source, or a connected group of sources with a vested interest, to validate the claims.
    .
    In other words, nobody but MLB really knows what MLB is thinking. We can all make inferences, but I am pretty sure that no single source should be taken at face value based on the numerous times I have been told something that sounded completely reasonable only to see it eventually proven false.

  29. So Wolff puts up the team for sale and MLB loox for a buyer willing to spend $1 billion on Victory Court, with no corporate naming rights sponsor. When this endeavor somehow fails (could it really?), the A’s end up leaving the Bay Area.

  30. @jeffrey-i totally agree with your last paragraph. I also like to congratulate you for bringing that 980 story alive on here, thus having the BANG newspaper chain (Trib, CoCo Times, Murky News, etc…) put it in all their editions–around 500k in print and I don’t know how much more online. I saw it was on the front page of my Hayward Review and thought how cool. Not sure what page is was on in the Murky News. Did the Chron pick this up too if you know? I did a search and couldn’t find anything.

  31. The evidence above is so “odd” for both cities “(SJ and Oak).

    For example the BRC has been done for months and even IDLF has spoken publicly with his frustration as no one on the Oakland City Council has spoken to the BRC for months.

    While San Jose has much more contact with MLB in general but still is in the dark about this even though they have a more solid case on paper than Oakland.

    Selig is getting votes and I know people think 18 months is way too long to get owner votes..think again.

    These owners are rich/powerful men who have 1000 things on their plate. Most have other business ventures besides baseball and to get votes on something “complicated” like this is going to take a lot of time.

    In this case Selig needs 3/4 votes or 23 votes out of 30 (this is assuming no one abstains). 23 votes?? That is a lot of traveling and scheduling and even Selig is very busy himself especially of late with the Rangers sale.

    He is almost done as evidenced by offering to pay for a Spring election in San Jose which would not be prudent to offer on public record if it was not plausible in the coming months.

    Building consensus on something like this tough and think about how long it took before the Montreal Expos finally settled in Washington? That took several years as well and Selig had to grind hard to get votes there as well as Peter Angelos like Bill Neukom was trying to convince his fellow owners otherwise.

    Selig needs to make sure when all 30 owners sit down to vote that there is no doubt on what the outcome will be.

    If a vote does occur….It only favors San Jose as Oakland doesn’t need MLB approval to get a stadium up.

  32. @Sid, that is a complete mischaracterization of the Washington/Baltimore situation. The delay in finding a permanent home was about getting a new stadium. It had nothing to do with Territorial Right’s whatsoever.
    .
    MLB announced that the Expos were moving to Washington before any deal was struck with Angelos, months before. The dispute there was not about Territorial Rights because DC and RFK stadium were not within the Orioles designated area. The reason an owner vote was needed was because the owners all held equal shares in the Expos franchise, not to override Angelos and his objections. Angelos could not have blocked the move in any way, but he had legitimate beefs about how a team close by, when there wasn’t one for decades, would impact his franchise value and television market.
    .
    Selig then stepped in and guaranteed the franchise value (which is moot now because the Orioles are worth a lot more than they were when the Nationals moved) and created a single regional sports network to broadcast both the Nats and Orioles, giving majority ownership to the Orioles. That, in effect, protected the Orioles dominance of the now shared television market.

  33. @jk-usa, no need to congratulate me on anything. But thanks.

  34. @Jeffrey- You are incorrect stating a vote was not needed. In order to move a team “anywhere” 3/4 votes of the owners is needed to authorize it.

    Otherwise a team could pick up and move to Calgary or Mexico City without authorization as long where they move isn’t in anyone’s TR.

    Selig needed at that time to get votes from the other owners regardless if they “owned” a piece of the franchise or not. The fact that they each owned a piece is irrelevant to the fact they had to vote to move the team in general.

    My point was that it took several years just to get a consensus that Washington DC was the right place to move the team. Of course you are “correct” on the fact that TR was not the issue.

    Franchise value or Market value is determined by TR, television, marketing, radio in their respective market. Washington DC as you point out was never in the Orioles TR in the first place. Selig and the other owners agreed to compensation for loss of “market share” or overall revenue loss (ticket sales, concessions, etc…) through revenue sharing along with TV rights.

    You are correct that TV rights do in fact affect Franchise value.

    The TV rights was thrown in there because Peter Angelos did in fact own TV rights to Washington DC before the Nationals moved there. That protected his franchise value otherwise Nationals games would be blacked out in Baltimore and vice versa in Washington DC therefore hurting his franchise value as you pointed out.

    The Orioles get revenue sharing now when before they used put $$ into the pot. With the economy sunk and how bad the Orioles are this agreement turned out to be a great deal for Angelos as everyone is down revenue wise in the league and yet the Orioles are getting compensated.

    Sorry you misunderstood the point I was trying to make and that is the slow process is because of votes needed and making sure on every detail before doing this. If Angelos taught Selig anything it was to be “careful” and to make sure on things.

    Selig got blown up by Angelos and it put him on the spot without answers.

    The same will happen with Neukom…Only this time Selig will be prepared.

  35. Whoops. Franchise Relocation does require a vote, my bad.

  36. @Jeffrey- All good dude.

    You are right on everything else on your post. I am simply stating my opinion (based on logic) on why this is taking so long.

    Another point I did not add was that IMHO Selig wants the Bay Area to be a “shared” territory that way if a vote in San Jose fails, however unlikely that may seem and in the case if the A’s leave the Bay area. Then at least an expansion franchise can be granted to San Jose in the future or another team may want to re-locate to San Jose down the line and MLB will not be “locked out” as they are now.

    I pray Selig does the right thing and let’s the A’s move to San Jose.

  37. @jeffrey: There goes my idea of selling naming rights to the outfield seats– the Clorox Bleachers.

  38. @baycommuter haha that’s a great idea!

  39. Has Clorox offered to sponsor an Oakland ballpark for $4 mill a year for 30 years? No? Why not?

  40. Jeffrey – thanks for the link to the Chron article. There goes ProOaklands head cheerleader and sponsor (all $500k of it)…who’s next to step in?

  41. Does MLB really want to send Cisco running to the waiting arms of the NFL and scare away all those other big companies by forcing the A’s to stay in Oakland, or, most likely, leave the Bay Area altogether? You’re on the clock, Bud. This decision seems like a no-brainer so stop being terrified of Neukon, who only cares about his own selfish wants and not about what’s best for MLB.

  42. @jeffery is that relevant information or trollbait? you “love of oakland” is tokenism at best.

    stick to writing half-ass blogs.

  43. seems like a no brainer for not only the a’s but all of mlb.

    you get the a’s potentially off the welfare system where they receive anywhere from 25-30 million before the season even starts and some of the biggest corps in the country will be putting money not only into the a’s pockets when they move to sj but into mlb’s pockets too.

  44. Has any firm based in San Jose or the South Bay committed on the record to provide any money for anything connected to a new A’s stadium in San Jose? If so, how much and when?

  45. Cisco has signed on for I believe $4 mill a year for 30 years to sponsor the stadium that was supposed to be in Fremont. Cisco’s CEO was a chief signatory of the recent letter urging MLB to let the A’s come to San Jose.

    Bottom Line: Cisco likely stays if the ballpark is in San Jose, likely walks if MLB insists on Oakland.

  46. zulu – a troll going on a blog that jeffrey helps as an editor and accusing him of being half-assed, lol.

    68 a’s fan- you must be new to the whole stadium movement. see here http://newsroom.cisco.com/dlls/2006/corp_111406.html: “Cisco will purchase the naming rights to the ballpark. This 30-year deal is valued at $4 million annually, with the potential for annual increases based on inflation.” Beats a 500k token “deposit” from Clorox, eh? 😉

  47. isn’t chambers the ceo of cisco publicly state he is an a’s fan?

    think he did back during some presentation he had 3-4 years ago about the technology of the future of a mlb park, probably thinking of cisco field when it was first thought of in fremont.

    probably will have to the same now in sj’s version of cisco field.

  48. We can be sure the 49ers are itching to turn Cisco from an MLB to an NFL naming rights sponsor. You’re on the clock, Bud. Are those idiotic “territorial rights” important enough to chase away some of the most important companies in America?

  49. @Zulu, now that I think I know what you are referring to as “trollbait,” let me ask you something. Is it not relevant that Mr. Clorox CEO can tell everyone who will listen that Lew Wolff won’t give Oakland a chance and then has the balls to send 60% of his Oakland based employees out to the burbs? Someone who really loves Oakland would not have qualms with calling out hypocritical crap. Mr. Knauss is part of the group of business leaders backing the “Lew hates Oakland” crowd, is he not? Maybe we should start hanging banners that say “Clorox hates Oakland.” after all, he is taking jobs that provide a living wage and moving them 30 miles away, not just seasonal, part time work.

  50. @Jeffrey–yeah, I’m disappointed in Clorox moving those jobs out. Oakland can’t get a break for the life of them. But it sounds like hdtrs will stay in Oakland for awhile. Safeway moved out of Oakland to Pleasanton in the 80’s. They just outgrew their space near JLS and now got a huge campus near Stoneridge. I did read Dreyer’s loves Oakland and their College Ave. hdqtrs, and the founder (now dead) would never think of moving out to the burbs. Who knows now, with this tough economy. They just reduced the size of the ice cream containers again, but still keep the same price. With cheaper, more spacious office space with lots of amenities and plenty of parking in the burbs, moving jobs out of the urban core is constant, . SF has lost a lot of jobs to the burbs. Most recently AAA. At the same time, a lot of start-ups and new tech companies like the inner city like Oakland’s Uptown and SF’s SOMA. Hipper, more lively surroundings with cool bars and restaurants rather than these boring suburban office parks.

  51. I’ll take Jeffrey’s “half-assed” blogging over zulu’s full-assed commentary any day.
    .
    On the hypocrisy front — it wasn’t bad enough that Clorox is moving out to Pleasanton, but he had to say he was hoping to build something like IBM’s campus in…San Jose! Yeah, he has no room to tell Lew where to build his stadium.

  52. To ST:

    thanks for the link; I actually have been following this issue quite closely. I remember now CISCO’s pledge – four years ago.

    Let me be more specific; has any company pledged anything in the last year (outside of A’s ownership) to a new stadium in San Jose?

    My point obviously is that I keep reading about this South Bay economic juggernaut but don’t see any hard evidence that many companies have stepped up to the plate as yet.

    Another thing: I agree with the various posters regarding the use of “a source” or “sources.”

  53. 75 companies backing up the San Jose effort. One already signed for $4 mill a year. Why would more of these companies formally sign on to a stadium in San Jose that may never be built? We haven’t seen that MLB has the intelligence yet to let the A’s go to San Jose. These companies are not going to hire lawyers, etc and spend money on something that isn’t allowed to happen yet. Give the A’s the OK and watch these companies officially jump on board.

    In the East Bay, where there is no territorial rights issue, we have so-called deposits for $500,000 and no one stepping forward to buy naming rights. Wow.

  54. @jk, I work at a start up. Oakland, despite the ridciulos jibberish that baseballoakland puts out there, is not on the radar. Most start ups are based in and around Menlo Park because that is where the money comes from. There are plenty in San Francisco, Mountain View, Palo Alto, etc.
    .
    68 A’s fan, the A’s haven’t yet been granted permission to build a stadium in San Jose. You can read my post from a week ago about funding and the budgets of companies that have pledged “to do whatever it takes to get this project done.” not sure what else you are looking for.

  55. @jk-usa… do you know what a tech start up meet up is? They happen all over the bay area all the time. I go to three on a regular basis. As your article states “It is unusual, because it is Oakland.” That is hardly “on the radar.” That is not to say that it might not one day be, but it is way premature to say that there is some burgeoning tech start up free for all moving into Downtown Oakland. The premier meet up is held once a month in Palo Alto at a law office right off 101 at the University Ave off ramp. Huge companies got their start in that very room… When something like that develops in Oakland, which I am all for, then I will say it is on the radar.
    .
    And yes, Baseball Oakland is useless gibberish. There is nothing on that site that is reality based, just the same old bullshit that used to be all over the OAFC website, mainly because it is run by linusalf from the old OAFC site. It is opinion and slanted, and in my view doesn’t even belong mentioned in the same breath as this site and the tireless work the ML has put into objectively covering the stadium issues for years. Calling ML slanted is ridiculous… He has supported 2 plans in Oakland, one in Fremont and one in San Jose. The commenters here, sure… Slanted. The content, absolutely not.
    .
    Writing entire pieces that say things like… “There is nothing wrong with the coliseum playing surface,” destroy credibility. Or, “I went to a meeting about the planning process around Victory Court, and though no one brought up a baseball stadium, no one was against it when I mentioned it. Therefore, everyone is for it!” Destroy credibility. This is just two examples of the completely slanted misinformation that exists on Baseball Oakland. I have stopped reading it because it is completely ridiculous.
    .
    Meanwhile, I make a few calls, talk to some folks and get copies of 4 neighborhood organizations that are not really for it and are asking to have another site considered. Including the JLDA. I also reached out to people with Let’s Go Oakland and the Oakland City Government and got nothing.
    .
    What you have here is a site run by one guy (ML) who has his heart in journalism, wants to see a new A’s stadium and is fine wherever it is, as long as it is in the Bay Area. He is helped by another guy (me) who has no skin in the game and really doesn’t care where the team ends up in as long as it is in the Bay Area. And you just compared us to a website that was started to advocate for a ballpark in Oakland. Forgive me if that offends my sensibilities.

  56. Jeffrey and ML – really want to thank you for taking the time and initiative in making and contributing to this blog. To me it is completely neutral and the definitive source for all A’s stadium developments with insights that look at all issues and news objectively, not subjectively.

  57. @ML and Jeffrey—you guys do an incredible job of discovering and communicating facts for all of options that are available to the A’s—to construe either of you as pro-SJ fails to acknowledge that the more significant developments over the past several years have been coming from SJ—-what makes no sense to me is when the Oakland only crowd complains that this is a SJ site–if that’s the case than stop visiting it–and making comments on it—regardless of what anyone thinks what is said in these blogs is not influencing the ultimate outcome–but rather provides a forum for interested parties to share their knowledge and voice their opinions….

  58. Hey Guys, no need to pat us on the back, I wasn’t fishing.
    .
    I invite everybody, Pro Oakland, Pro San Jose, Pro Bay Area in General to come and read.

  59. I forgot to say thanks for the back patting, even if it was unnecessary, ha. So thanks.

  60. @Jeffrey–I agree, you and ML are fairly neutral on most things, but it’s 95% of the followers/posters who are stubbornly pro-SJ, which makes it appear so pro SJ. That’s all I’m saying.

  61. re: @Jeffrey–I agree, you and ML are fairly neutral on most things, but it’s 95% of the followers/posters who are stubbornly pro-SJ, which makes it appear so pro SJ. That’s all I’m saying.

    Well, what do you expect? While SJ has been taking steps to woo the A’s (buying downtown properties, approaching MLB and working with Wolff), Oakland has been taking steps to banish the A’s (wrecking the existing stadium, firing the city manager for daring to suggest a downtown ballpark, bashing Wolff).

    Has there even a town in history less appreciative of its MLB team than Oakland? I kind of doubt it.

  62. @pjk–Iike I mentioned in a post a few weeks ago, Oakland has been far from perfect but did save the A’s from going to Denver in 1980 by holding Charlie Finley to his lease and finding a local ownership in the Haas family. Even if the Raiders didn’t come back and the Coli was the old Coli with a few upgrades, the Carpetbagger 1(Schottmann) and Carpetbagger 2(Wolff) would still complain about the facility being outdated and wanting to got to the SB. Wolff said back in 1995 about an A’s new home that he wouldn’t spend five minutes on any other city besides San Jose, and he wasn’t even associated with the A’s back then, so you know where his intentions were way back then. He put a minor effort in looking in Oakland but somehow won’t settle for a less than perfect site like VC. I can’t believe he wasted so much time and money on Fremont. That was the worse idea ever and the stupid name, which actually means a lot to some of us, was a bigger joke: Silicon Valley A’s of Fremont…lmao!!

  63. @jk–where do you get your information? Ever heard of stating facts—-your bagging LW for not finding VC—who’s role is it to find a suitable location for the ballpark—the ones he was interested in the city of Oakland wasn’t interested in—here we are..18 months into Oakland’s latest death sentence and your still touting 4 sites in Oakland–3 of which have already been dismissed by the city and the 4th (VC) having serious land acquisition and infrastructure costs issues—

    And please show me proof of anywhere where LW said it would be the Silicon Valley A’s of Fremont…anywhere to back up this “worse idea ever” claim you had…if the ballpark had happened in Fremont it would still be the San Jose A’s…..remember those 75 large Silicon Valley corporations that signed the most recentl SVLG letter to LW—he wants them to buy and as they stated in their letter—moving the team to San Jose….or in Fremont’s case…close to San Jose…is important to them-

  64. Jk, I get it. I understand the rage… But seriously, Steve Schott volunteered $100M for a new stadium on the Coliseum grounds. That isn’t all that carpetbaggerish. Ken Hoffman wanted a stadium in Oakland.
    .
    Another thing to remember is that when Schott and Hoffman were buying the team, they were negotiating to have the Coliseum remodeled. Similar to what was planned, and eventually built, in Anaheim. They wanted to remodel the Coliseum into a baseball only facility.
    .
    The ONLY problem I have with the A’s is that they didn’t go after Uptown. Of course, Mayor Brown wasn’t into it either so…
    .
    Lew Wolff, I really have no problems with him in the stadium hunt. At all.

  65. i dont’ know how they were gonna remodel the coliseum that would’ve made it even up to par with what these newer parks are like.

    laa’s park was built specifically for baseball and then was remodeled for football when the rams moved in. the coliseum was specifically built for multi purpose venues for baseball and football.

    the one huge drawback was the foul territory and even had they cut the foul territory down and added seats in it’s place, you’d still had a ton of seats far away from the field of play.

    coliseum even had not been ruined, imo the a’s still would’ve needed to get a new stadium built eventually.

  66. The A’s asked for baseball-only modifications to the Coliseum and got the destruction of Mount Davis instead.Schott and Hoffman pursued a stadium in Oakland only to have the duly elected mayor take an “over my dead body” position against a stadium in downtown Oakland. Has any other city been so dismissive of its MLB team? No. Does any city deserve to lose its MLB team more than Oakland does? No.

  67. re: Iike I mentioned in a post a few weeks ago, Oakland has been far from perfect but did save the A’s from going to Denver in 1980

    Why 1980 still matters, I don’t know. 1980 matters now as much as 1880. Oakland in the last 15 years has done nothing but hurt the A’s operations.Time for Oakland to lose its baseball team. Thanks to Oakland and Alameda County, the A’s went from having a sunny, unique ballpark into what is universally recognized as the Worst Stadium in Major League Baseball.

    But I suppose some people just want to view poor Oakland as the victim here.

  68. pjk, what does 15 years ago have to do with anything? Damn, I love stirring the pot

  69. @jk – stubbornly pro San Jose?
    .
    Maybe the reason why there are so many posters in favor of SJ is because it is obviously the best location for a new ballpark. No doubt the Giants think so, otherwise they wouldn’t be fighting so hard to keep the A’s out of SCC. Even Giants fans tell me a move to SJ would be the best for the A’s
    .
    As with Navigator, I applaud your passion, even though IMO it’s misguided.

  70. I’m going to agree with those folks applauding Marine Layer and Jeffrey here. I’ve been following this site since its inception and I’ve never really seen any San Jose or Oakland or Fremont-centric stance. This is a true fan site and it’s always been about what’s best for the A’s and about keeping the team in the Bay Area. I’m continually pleased by the quality work you folks do and I thank you. You are a “go to” destination for me.

    Now, for you Oakland die-hards, I’ll say it does seem as if the site is becoming more San Jose-centric, something you guys delight in pointing out. But don’t you ever wonder why? To an unbiased observer, who used to attend lots of games in the Coliseum and is accordingly well aware of its shortcomings, it seems you all have a convenient memory lapse when it comes to how the city of Oakland has treated the A’s. Oakland hasn’t cared about the A’s for years. The A’s were just part of the background noise. They did care about the Raiders and look what that got them. They ruined the Coliseum to accommodate the Raiders—damn, Mt Davis is ugly—and looking at the Raiders’ attendance figures, we can see how well that worked. You seeing any Raiders’ home games these days?

    I’ve said this before. Ain’t got a dog in the fight. In fact, all things being equal, I’d rather see the A’s stay in Oakland. But Oakland can’t afford the A’s. And the Raiders. And the Warriors. It’s too much for a small city with the problems Oakland’s got. Oakland chose the Raiders and the Warriors over the A’s. That’s where the money went. One would be hard-pressed to call the A’s beneficiaries of the money spent on the Coliseum for the Raiders. And who paid for the Arena upgrades? And what have the A’s gotten? IMO, Oakland’s got no legitimate beef if the A’s want to actually pay for a stadium in another Bay Area city. Why would they have a problem? The only thing Oakland could possibly offer as a counter to San Jose would be if the city offered to pay for the stadium. But that’s not going to happen.

    Oakland guys: it’s a given that the A’s will have to pay for their new stadium. Their money. Not your money. Not mine. They’ve already said they won’t spend that money in Oakland. Read the history of how Oakland slumbered through the various offers over the years from A’s management. The attempts to get Oakland’s attention. Oakland wasn’t listening. Oakland didn’t care. So what’s Oakland’s point now in the last-minute scramble to find a place for the A’s to spend money in Oakland? The A’s won’t do it. Not in Oakland. They’ve given up on Oakland. And what’s your point, Oakland guys? Your beef is not with the A’s. You know who it’s with. And you’re not going to change reality by insisting that someone has to somehow force the A’s to build a new ballpark in Oakland when they don’t want to.

  71. I was driving down 880 through Oakland on my way home to San Jose last night and I noticed that there isn’t a Oak street exit on the southbound side.

    There is a 5th street exit but it was very evident to me driving through that area at 8:20pm at night on why the A’s refused to build there years ago.

    The site is “not viable” strictly based on the existing freeway and road infrastructure that would need to be addressed in an EIR.

    No EIR would get validated with the way things are in that area right now and it would cost millions to make the necessary changes, not to mention the land acquisition that would need to take place on top of this rather large problem.

    The speed limit in that area is 55 mph and it was congested even at 8pm at night. During the daytime or rush hour it is such a mess that it is not even worth it.

    The site is not “less that perfect” it is “far from perfect” and there is no way an EIR would pass in that area period with the city/county putting in millions to renovate the freeway and road infrastructure there.

    If that is the “best” site Oakland has then it is truly over for them.

    A part of me was thinking Oakland might have a chance with Victory Court but after seeing it last night for myself…..San Jose A’s in 2014 or 2015.

  72. Counting chickens as usual…

  73. @Sid–and what makes you such an expert on an EIR? Just a drive by? I know you want the A’s in SJ as much as LW does, maybe even more, but I think VC is a cool area, less than perfect, but viable. They said how messed up Pacbell would be traffic and parking wise wise and it wasn’t as bad as they thought.
    Okay, back up plan: 980 decking site.

  74. I’m not at all familiar with the Victory Court site but if access is as bad Sid said, that should eliminate it from consideration. The 49ers don’t want to consider Hunter’s Point because of poor freeway access; PacBell Park, meanwhile, has 280 emptying right onto it and the Bay Bridge not all that far.

    The San Jose site can be pointed to easily from Route 87. Routes 101, 880 and 280 also are nearby, as well as the Diridon train station and bus station.

    FWIW, the only thing keeping Oakland in this game is an artificial constraint MLB stupidly imposed on itself: with territorial “rights,” not being intelligent enough to know that Frisco and San Jose are two separate places separated by 45 miles. Oakland simply has zero advantages over San Jose. Nada.

  75. It’s not at all as bad as he’s making it out to be. The only problem I see is when trains are comming through causing traffic to stop, so they would need a solution for that. Ironically it seems most convenient for people comming from the south, closest exit puts you right on Oak St. essentially right next to where the park would be. Yes southbound isn’t as convenient but heads you right there, less than a quarter mile from the ramp. Not a problem at all. Train problem, yes.

  76. Ralph, as I understand it (and I will freely admit that I am not a traffic engineer) the off ramps do cause challenges because they both end in a dead end 90 degree turn, which causes traffic backups now without a ballpark and 10,000 cars. The only alternatives are surface streets (like Embarcadero) that require crossing through, over or around train tracks (assuming Oakland builds an under or over pass).
    .
    It is part of the reason Jack London Square has always been “the next big thing.” it is not easy to get too.

  77. @Jeffrey–a few weeks ago, about 100k over 3 days found there way to the EatReal Festival at JLS and really enjoyed it–I did.. The place was hopping. Parking was a minor pain in the area, but they had shuttles from DT to the Sq.. I notice a ton of bikes there. A lot of people form SF taking their bikes on Bart and biking it to to JLS. With VC, you’ll have LM Bart 1/3rd of a mile away, a straight shot down Oak. Pretty convenient I’d say. That’s the way I’d go to games. What is your biggest thing against VC? I wonder what LW’s biggest thing against it, besides that it’s in Oakland and not SJ. The view’s may not as be as scenic towards the estuary as DT Oak, but DT SJ’s skyline lacks any kind of character. Probably the blandest skyline of any major city I’ve been to and I’ve been to a lot of them.

  78. jk-usa, VC’s biggest challenge is transportation. This isn’t something I am making up, this is reality. JLS has had trouble attracting consistent traffic (for decades) because it is a pain in the ass to get to/around even when there aren’t a lot of people down there. In recent years, they have improved parking by building some garages, but it doesn’t improve the freeway infrastructure, or make the trains go away. Those things can be improved, it is just a question of how and how much.
    .
    Sometime back (2004?), there was a study done about transportation options in JLS/Waterfront. It included options like a BART station (which was astronomical in cost because of the way the tracks are laid out as they pass through the area). The suggested option was for Oakland to build out a street car network connecting Uptown, JLS and Lake Merritt BART (I think those 3 points, I haven’t read it in a while). There were a couple of options presented that were also doable. The shuttle buses are a step in that direction, or a similar concept. For JLS to really be an attraction, something bold like the street car idea is going to have to happen, amongst other things.
    .
    The view of Alameda and the estuary, the freeway flyover that runs along the length of the “parcel,” and other sort of aesthetic things are what they are at VC. They can be polished in the design. I don’t think of those as a barrier or a bonus. I’d love a skyline view, but it is what it is in all proposals, not much of one.
    .
    What I980 and Diridon both have over Victory Court is that they have an area where you can imagine a plaza. At I980 it would be between 980 and downtown, pedestrian traffic coming form 2 BART stations would pass right through there on the way to the stadium. At Diridon, there is the HP Pavilion at one end, a train station in the middle, and the proposed ball ark at the other end. Creating an urban entertainment district framed in by 87.

  79. @jeffrey–good post. I see where you’re coming from. A plaza would be cool, but shouldn’t be a deal breaker at VC. LW wanted something like that in Fremont with a Santana Row type deal in there, surrounded by condos. Trying to create an urban environment in a suburban area. But talk about a pain to get to with no Bart. And they were still having people walk far for parking through the box stores of Pac. Commons. I would take any Oak location or even SJ’s plan over that.

  80. @jk-usa- You are correct I am not a Civil Engineer (Though I was an Electrical Engineer) but it does not take an engineer to see the transportation issues at VC and the headache it would cause. The trains and bad freeway infrastructure would cause major back up on to 880 (which is already bad during the day/evenings) and city streets.

    Granted you may take BART but a majority have to drive to the game and that is a fact. Pac Bell has several ways to get to the game and leave from it therefore their EIR passed. I-280 ends and starts there and you can get to a game on I-280 North with minimal traffic during rush hour in the evening because everyone lives off 101 and Highway 1, hence why those two are always packed in the evening.

    I-980 has nothing around it and unless they decide to build some type of development to support the stadium it is a non-starter. That was “one” of the reasons why MLB eliminated that particular site. The conversation on I-980 needs to stop for this reason as it will “never happen” because of the BRC eliminating it.

    Now if Oakland is willing to put millions of dollars into re-doing the freeway infrastructure in the VC area then I say it is a good site because of the points you make about it being near the water and JLS.

    Even with perfect funding it would take 8-10 years to make it happen if cost overruns do not kill it first.

    The A’s do not have a choice now but to move to San Jose because of this.

  81. @Sid–Hmm, 8 to 10 years to make it happen at VC? I can wait; I’m very patient. I’ll still be only 56-58, retired, collecting my union pension at 55 and will enjoy the last 25 years of my life (hopefully) watching my A’s at VC. Can LW wait? I doubt it. Can he wait for San Jose? Barely.

  82. Jk, MLB wants a plaza. Or more specifically, they want an ancillary area that enhances the overall fan experience. This was shared at a San Jose walking tour. As a fan, I think that should be important. I want an environment like Yawkey and Landsdowne in Boston. I’d settle for what is along the 3rd Base side in San Francisco.
    .
    If MLB really believes it will take 8 to 10 years, don’t be surprised if they aren’t willing to wait.

  83. @Jeffrey–what’s up with BS not building his new ballpark in DT Milwaukee, having a plaza and all, instead keeping them on the old site? Brewer fans love their tail-gating, but BS loves that parking revenue even more and it was cheaper overall to build there, not requiring land to purchase. Kind of like if the A’s built on the existing Coli parking lot, which I was for of course, but would prefer anywhere DT.
    I’ve read several articles criticizing BS for not building in DT Milw., which could of really used the boost of activity.

  84. Yeah, Milwaukee is kind of odd. No idea why they didn’t do it downtown, I know the city leaders wanted it downtown.
    .
    Though, Miller Park is pretty fabulous. Watching games on TV don’t do that park justice.

  85. Don’t do, ugh. That should be “doesn’t do” but, I think you know what I mean.

  86. Hey jeffrey, are you also Jeffrey? Just want to make sure I’m not talking to another jeffrey. And I see that you’re Jeffro on AN. There’s a Jeffrey B. that used to post OAFC. That’s not you is it? I don’t post on either site, but do check them out now and then along with baseballoakland. I do post sometimes on LetsGoOakland on FB. That site is spammed to death. We keep bugging Doug Boxer to weed these vermin out.

  87. I am Jeffrey August. Jeffrey, jeffrey, jeffro and not Jeffrey B.

  88. @Jeffrey August. Jeffrey, jeffrey, jeffro. Got it! — and keep up the good work 🙂

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