“The reality is that even though you have land,” Quan said of San Jose, “you still have not gotten permission” from Major League Baseball to relocate the A’s to San Jose. “My timeline is less urgent than your timeline,” said Quan.
Apparently Oakland’s timeline is urgent enough that the Victory Court EIR is being fast-tracked for completion in less than 12 months. When was the last time in the Bay Area anything this large got its EIR completed in less than 12 months? Beyond that, there’s still the issue of issuing bonds for the project – which may not be possible after this summer, at least not without a vote.
Despite the numerous questions about Oakland’s ability to compress 2-4 years of work into 12 months, Quan is pushing forward and that is a good thing. It’s best for Oakland and A’s fans to see if anything can come out of this, because the last thing we want right now is one less option.
Experts quoted for the story, namely CSUEB’s Paul Staudohar and Smith College’s Andrew Zimbalist, aren’t so sanguine about Oakland’s chances. In explaining how San Jose is well ahead in the process, Staudohar said:
“So unless Oakland pulls a rabbit out of a hat very soon, it appears they will lose the A’s by default.”
For his part, Lew Wolff relates that Bud Selig wants to look at every angle, which would indicate that Oakland should and will have time to complete the process. Unfortunately for Oakland, this redevelopment crisis may provide the most cruel, unkind cuts to both the schedule and funding. Here’s to Oakland finishing the work, with as few legal and procedural issues as possible.