90 Days Or Bust

The last post had some fortuitous timing, as a breaking Chronicle item came in just as I was about to hit publish. That was followed by articles in the Tribune and SF Business Times, so read those to get the full (for now) scoop.

In short, the City Council voted 6-1 to approve a 90-day extension. That’s a marked departure from the 6 months that was previously expected. Motivation for moving up the deadline is unclear. It could be confidence on the new investor group’s part. It could be the need for Oakland to show something before the February NFL relocation window opens, which only a 90-day timeline would accomplish. Perhaps it’s a little of both. In any case the City of Oakland and the new working group, New City Development LLC, will have until MLK Day to prove itself.

Raised park concourse that runs through Coliseum City

Raised park concourse that runs through Coliseum City

New City will be headed by Floyd Kephart of Renaissance Companies in San Diego. Renaissance is a consulting and advisory firm. Kephart’s main task will be to bring in the remaining money required to bridge the funding gap. He’s also responsible for signing up a master developer to oversee the entire 800 acre project. There are only a handful of companies that have experience doing projects of this size and scope. Forest City was expected to be the master developer originally, but they backed out when they saw the costs and potential returns. Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross runs Related Companies, another experienced firm for such work. Related is heading up the massive, $6.5 billion development north of Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara. What does Kephart see that Forest City didn’t? We should soon find out.

The lone dissenting vote was CM Rebecca Kaplan, who pointed out that several deliverables are still missing, including the deal terms and financing model. Both of those items were expected over the summer, and when BayIG was pressed for them, were promised again in August (and apparently not delivered). Kaplan’s ties to the A’s extension and Lew Wolff’s recently returned campaign contributions make her moves somewhat suspect, but lack of follow-through on BayIG’s part is rather disappointing and unsettling when you consider the lead time they had to assemble the deliverables.

A big surprise to come out of the session was CM Larry Reid’s complete 180 on the project. He has been a fervent critic of the plan for at least a year now, and his effusive praise of Kephart is quite startling. That said, the project is in his district, so he stands to benefit if it comes through. He’s also not up for reelection this year, so he doesn’t have to back either Kaplan’s or Mayor Jean Quan’s visions. Reid remains Vice Chair of the Coliseum JPA Board.

Three months is an awfully short time to get the deal done. It’s not a matter of tying up loose ends. There are major deal points that have to be addressed.

  • Sign at least one tenant, preferably the Raiders to start
  • Engage the A’s and Warriors (even though neither team is interested)
  • Provide deliverables and reports that haven’t been completed yet (deal terms, financing, 2nd phase market analysis)
  • Bring in a master developer
  • Line up needed capital for stadium phase and ancillary development phases
  • Figure out who pays for the remaining debt at the Coliseum and Arena (if necessary)
  • Gather support of the JPA and Alameda County

It all feels like it’s going to get severely rushed, which could end in a horrendously bad deal for Oakland if they’re not careful. Quan’s calling the announcement a victory, though she neglected to mention that she said several times throughout the year that a team – the Raiders – would be a signed partner, at first during the summer, then late summer, then fall. Problem with trying to sign the Raiders is that because of the lack of concrete information on financing, investors, and viability, there’s no reason for the Raiders to sign on, and national reports echo that. Every time someone in Oakland talks up how the Raiders are getting ready to officially be a part of this, Mark Davis knocks that notion down. With the season almost half over and the NFL’s relocation window looming in February, there’s no reason for Davis to commit to anything before he feels it’s the right moment. The best deal for Davis comes with having the most options open, and that includes Oakland, Los Angeles, and maybe even San Antonio. He at least has limited leverage in that scenario. As for the the A’s, Lew Wolff is standing as far away from this as humanly possible, not wanting to make it anymore complicated, and not wanting to draw the short straw.

The JPA is busy getting ready for life after the Coliseum too. Last week they were ready to hire Republican Guy Houston, but the vote on his hire was delayed amidst renewed scrutiny into legal issues Houston had while in the State Assembly. The JPA did make a hire on Tuesday and his name will be familiar: former Oakland City Manager Robert Bobb. Bobb’s consulting firm is consulting the JPA on stadium and other development at the Coliseum, whether it’s Coliseum City or a Wolff-developed alternative. The cost to the JPA? $25,000 a month. Check out this org chart showing Bobb, Houston (or someone else), and the JPA.

Org chart supplied by The Robert Bobb Group

Org chart supplied by The Robert Bobb Group

The JPA doesn’t have the power to make any planning or zoning decisions. Only the City does. The County is co-owner of some of the land and could provide resources, so it also has a say in whatever happens. All I can say is that when you look at the above chart and all the different parties involved in Coliseum City, it’s a lot of cooks for one kitchen.

105 thoughts on “90 Days Or Bust

  1. Everyone involved seems to want to do just enough to say that they tried. That is all. The mayoral candidates want to act like they tried to save all 3 teams and delay the ultimate failure to keep them until after an election. A three month extension accomplishes that.

    The Raiders want to wait until their final home game has been played at the Coliseum before announcing they’re going to a new city. They also want to be able to show the NFL that they were in negotiations with Oakland for months/years and couldn’t agree to a deal, even after they’d made it obvious to the city that they’d be gone if the city/county couldn’t provide money/land for a stadium.

    I’m hopeful that the A’s would have more success dealing with local government if and when the Raiders and Warriors leave, because the city/county would seemingly be less distracted once there is only one team left to negotiate with and plan for. But I don’t think we’ve been given much of a reason to believe that.

    Perhaps the MLB owners’ lodge will be less desirous to staunchly protect the Giants’ territorial rights after they win their THIRD title in five years? I can only hope.

    • I’m not really convinced there is any overwhelming desire in the Lodge to protect the Giants’ t-rights. There’s probably not any very strong will to overturn them either (otherwise something would have already happened). I think that most people (and certainly all of the owners) realize that the A’s situation is untenable, but if they are forced to choose between altering the Giants’ t-rights or potentially their own, they’ll gladly throw the Giants under the bus, so to speak. The territory issue is really just a regional problem right now (i.e. in the Bay Area) and entertaining the idea of the A’s being outside the Bay Area suddenly makes it a national issue for the league.

    • It goes to show what Mark Davis wanted all along….to leave Oakland.

  2. @Jacob Jackson

    Greed is a powerful drug so Frisco will keep trying until the A’s are gone or leave town.

  3. I can’t believe anyone is still talking/thinking about the Warriors staying in Oakland. It’s just plain stupid at this point.

  4. This three month extension is all a last ditch effort by Oakland officials to any hope of keeping the Raiders in Oakland. Also, If Mark Davis is truly serious about moving to LA, he knows all too well that he must submit his bid during this coming February’s relocation to LA open window time period. There seems to be every indication that at least the Rams and possibly the Chargers will be submitting requests to relocate to LA this February, too. Decision making pressure for all sides will be on over the next three months, As for the A’s, the only thing they can do is just wait out these next ninety days and only then will they be able to move ahead, one way or another, with their own future ballpark plans.

    • If I had to bet, I say that the Chargers don’t go to LA and instead negotiate for a bigger slice of the relocation fee in order to help fund a new stadium in SD.

      • SMG, I’d say that’s a good bet. The Chargers seemingly have no interest in LA or they would have made that move years ago. Meanwhile if they can convince the league to provide them with a larger chunk of both Kroenke and AEG/Davis’s relocation fees you are correct it would go a long way toward helping them get a new San Diego stadium.

      • Imagine there being pretty new stadiums in the Bay Area (already in place), LA, and San Diego. There would be a whole lot of California Super Bowls.

    • i say this….Mark Davis all along wanted to move. Now, let him leave.

  5. The Coliseum City thing has dragged on with no progress for three years and now it’s suddenly going to all come together in 90 days? Approaching the Warriors about building in Oakland after they’ve purchased land in Frisco? This is all about stalling, stalling, stalling and refusing to read the writing on the wall that 2, maybe all 3, teams are leaving.

  6. I guess Oakland Alameda County will have to deal with the Raiders first after all unlike the A’s; they actually do have real choices, interims of being able to move to another location.
    Is this last minute investor for real?, generally I would say no, however it is intriguing that they already have a minor ownership stake in the Raiders, that could add some much needed validity to this effort.
    The problem (among many), is we really have no idea if this is something Davis really wants to do, or is it simply the “I made a good faith”, effort to pacify the NFL, to gain approval to move?
    Is Wolff even serious? I get why he is waiting, I believe like many others, he is waiting to see if Davis will move, or make a deal first. If Davis moves, that will put Wolff in a better position, but if Davis makes a deal, will Wolff join in at some point? I’m sure he will try to use the Davis deal (if it happens), as leverage with MLB, but unlike some I think that’s a flimsy augment, as the land in and around the coliseum site should be able to support two new venues (IMHO)
    In an ironic way, we may have a situation where Davis wants to build at the coliseum site, but can’t get it to pencil out, and Wolff does not want to, but can get it to pencil out.

    • Mark Davis wants to leave Oakland. Let them go!!!

      • @ John
        I would have to agree with you to a certain extent. If Davis real wants to go, then to hell with him and the Raiders, I won’t be left for a second time by this organization, and ever fill the same way about them again.
        If it’s true that the coliseum site can only accommodate the A’s, or the Raiders, I hope it’s the A’s.
        I would say the Raiders, if I knew for a fact that it would result in the A’s getting San Jose, that way both could remain in the Bay Area. If one of them has to move out of the region (or Oakland), I would rather it be the Raiders then the A’s.

      • @Lakeshore/Neil: I would agree with everything u said. I gave up on the Raiders. I knew all along that Mark Davis’ intentions were to leave. It was a mistake to let them back in Oakland. Look at the Coliseum now, its a DUMP!

        pjk said it best….Oakland has no money. Just let them go.

    • I think two things are being conflated here. The guy that was brought in to secure further investment is not an owner of the Raiders, as far as I can tell.
      There was an earlier report of a hedge fund getting involved, but that was not what happened yesterday and I’m not certain it is an option. Not certain it isn’t an option either.
      When you tie all of this together, BayIG effectively gone after a year of trying, Quan holding a press conference to make a big deal about something that isn’t really something yet, and election in two weeks, no sports teams actually involved in a binding way, a short term extension… It’s hard to see how this is anything but a political CYA move.
      Time will tell.

      • @ Jeffrey
        Sounds about right. It is intriguing, that this guy is already a minority owner of the team, sort of makes me wonder if it could gain some legs, but yeah I agree with you.

  7. I know it’s a little off topic, but does anyone have an idea, of how the proposed transportation tax in Alameda county is looking? I know they need two thirds of the vote to pass it.
    I’m sure, if passed it will be a center piece of whatever is hopefully built at the coliseum site, from the city and county stand point, interims of the massive amount of infrastructure cost.

    • I was under the impression that most of the money was going to be put into highway improvements and a BART extension to Livermore.

      • @ SMGVII
        I think that was the idea, not that it’s not a transportation measure, it is but they are not going to come out and say, we need to pass this in part because the Raiders, and possible the A’s need new stadiums, and we at least have to pay for the infrastructure cost (about 450 million), so we are going to use some of the funds, for a “transportation hub” at coliseum city, that way we don’t touch the general fund, and we can tell the public it’s something that’s already accounted for, with future tax money.
        We are talking about politicians.

    • @Neil – I haven’t seen any polling on Measure BB. I assume that like previous transportation taxes, it will go down to the wire. The measure’s spending plan shows $300 million for various transit oriented development projects in the bay. It doesn’t say how much would go to the Coliseum specifically. My guess is that it would be $30-40 million, much like last time.

      • @ ML
        Man, that is not much when we are talking about 350-450 million in needed infrastructure cost.
        Well if it passes every little bit will help, but that’s a lot of money to come up with. Oakland /Alameda County are going to have to get real creative, if the Raiders and or the A’s really are interested in building something at the site.

  8. I will say this and make a prediction. Oakland, in 2015, will lose the Raiders, and in 2017, lose the Warriors. Oakland has the A’s if they play ball with Wolff. Otherwise…all three gone before 2020.

  9. Damn that new video board looks nice in Mesa for the A’s spring training. Ironically it also appears far bigger than the ones at the Coliseum. Maybe the A’s should just stay in Mesa year round…

  10. aren’t the a’s getting two new scoreboards for 2015 and isn’t the team paying for it?

    if true does that mean they’ll replaced the old decrypted ones put in during the mid 90s renovation between after the football season and before the baseball season? that means somewhere between january-march?

    • No, Oakland tax payers are paying for the scoreboard with the 5 million Lew Wolff took from Oakland’s tax coffers. Wolff and Selig strong armed Oakland out ot 5 million from parking taxes at the Coliseum.

    • The whole NFL team in London is an absolutely idiotic idea. It reflects poorly on the involved parties that any government or the league is taking it even slightly seriously.

  11. Wow. A lot of reading at lunch time today. It’s like, “Management by Press Conference that the East Bay Express is Happy to Pass Off as Something Bigger Than it Is” is the new black. One story says the Raiders stadium will cost $2B (I am assuming they mean the whole development)? Some describe the development as 120 acres, others talk about 800 acres.

    Just reading the SF Business Times, Tribune and Chronicle stories and all three give different and conflicting information. It’s hard to think that isn’t the plan… That still, Oakland’s plan is to kick the can down the road in a game of political checkers that Jean Quan pretends is chess. That after years of Victory Court, Howard terminal, Forest City, all of this shit… It’s still the same empty press conference and the same people are lapping it up as if it was rock solid, indisputable word of Zeus, take it to the bank, Solid Gold Dancers hotness. “In 90 days, we can add something else to make it seem like something is happening.” What a load of steaming turtle excrement on the tropical beach of nonexistence. It’s like reading the novel Jaws, you start rooting for the shark to eat these ugly people.

    I need a bong rip.

    • @ Jeffreyaugust
      “I need a bong rip.”
      Classic, please pass it along.

    • Fuck it. Peter Liu for mayor! We can tear the entire complex down and turn it into a race track for his horse-based transportation system/local economy. At this point, that idea is about as good as anything the city has to offer.

  12. This is nothing but an election year stunt.

    Why wasn’t M. Davis or a Raiders PR person at the press conference with the Mayor announcing this latest development? Clearly, new investors should be agreeable to M. Davis and be able to make some positive comments about this new development during the press conference… Right? In this case, for the Mayor and Oakland politicos silence on the part of Davis & the A’s is not golden.

    My guess… …despite all the noise, Lew Wolf and M. Davis (both had a long lunch meeting two weeks ago) are probably the only people in the Bay Area with regard to this topic that know what is eventually going to happen and when.

    I think they already have a pretty good idea from their own sources and contacts regarding information that is not yet been made public involving Oakland stadium financing….NFL to LA….and Giants’ territorial rights\ SJ lawsuit decisions.

    Info won’t get released because the teams don’t want to piss off the fan base (especially the Raiders at 0-6) before the end of the season. If Raiders announced a move to LA now…Oakland Raider fans would probably stay away in droves for the rest of the season.

    • @ aex
      Davis probably does not have a problem with the new investor; after all he is already a minor investor in the team.
      There is an outside chance that Davis was not there, simply because he wants to keep Oakland’s feet to the fire (keep options open), and if he indorses any plan, the politicians may think they don’t have to work as hard. (not that they have been, to this point), but I think we all know, that many of these California municipality has to be on the verge of losing a team, before they get serious.
      I’m not sure Davis is in the position to indorse any plan, he may sincerely want to make it work in Oakland, and yet may not be able to pull it off, therefor have to wait for NFL/LA, or San Antonio to bail him out, we know Oakland can’t do that.
      I do agree with your point about Wolff and Davis; I think the two of them have a real idea of what the other wants to do, and what the other may be willing to do, if they can’t quite get exactly what they want.

  13. Several pointless comments deleted. Watch it people.

  14. Many here are just speculating. Many here seem to want to see the Raiders, A’s and Warriors all leave Oakland. Why all the negativity regarding anything proposed in Oakland? Why does this blog never hold Lew Wolff responsible for never getting behind any project in Oakland?

    Why are many here so quick to condemn any project in Oakland while never holding the proposed site and project in San Jose to such scrutiny and pessimism?

    • @Elmano – I’ll lay it out for you nice and simple.

      I loved Uptown, which pre-dated Wolff. I supported Wolff’s Coliseum North vision, which guess what – was a project in Oakland. The land acquisition problems made it too difficult to pull off, which I wrote about here.

      Since then, every site pitched by Oakland has been half-baked or too complex to pull off. I deal in practical truths here. If something looks difficult, I make note of the difficulties and obstacles. That’s fair. If there are advantages I point those out too. What happened with Victory Court? What did everyone outside Oakland (and some within it, privately) say about Howard Terminal’s prospects? I am not here to be Oakland’s cheerleader. Baseball Oakland does that quite well. If you want skin-deep coverage and very little analysis, go there. Please. If you want someone who actually does research, this is the place. Sometimes that means outcomes that you won’t like. Not my problem.

      Whatever Wolff’s proposing in Oakland – we’ll put it through the grinder just like Coliseum City and everything else. Because that’s what fans and readers deserve, because no one else is willing to do it.

      Let me make myself abundantly clear – I’m about the A’s first. Cities come a very distant second, whether Oakland, San Jose, or wherever. That is not going to change despite your bellyaching about Oakland.

      • Marine Layer,

        Uptown was never supported by Schott and Hoffman. You know the A’s showed zero interest in Uptown and now I’ve even heard Wolff mention this as counting for one of his attempts. It’s ludicrous that San Jose supporters bring up Uptown in any talk about the A’s supporting a site in Oakland.

        Coliseum North was a bad joke on Oakland perpetrated by Wolff. This was nothing more than a bad artistic rendering of a project Wolff knew would never come to fruition. Wolff was already talking to the Mayor of Fremont at the time, and never made any sort of attempt to follow through on his fantasy drawings.

        Victory Court was another possible site where Wolff stood on the sidelines and didn’t even acknowledge the possibilities. Of course, without a willing partner the City of Oakland could never get that very promising site off the ground.

        Howard Terminal has always been blown off by Wolff. This site makes Wolff angry because he knows it’s a viable site and a threat to his ultimate San Jose plans. Wolff asked MLB to drop the hammer on Howard Terminal so that the only “viable” site in Oakland would be the one where the Raiders and the City of Oakland were planning a massive development.

        Marine Layer, you have never held Wolff responsible for his refusal to seriously commit to ANY project or site in Oakland. Instead you always side with Wolff while blaming Oakland for not being able to bring a project to completion with an unwilling partner.

      • @Nav – You’re under the impression that Wolff’s involvement will somehow wash away all of the various problems that have plagued all of these previous concepts. That is so hopelessly naive that I have to question your judgement. If it doesn’t pencil out initially there’s no magic formula that will make it pencil out. That’s why Coliseum City still doesn’t have a financing model. Your refusal to spend even a minute on these issues renders you completely blind to them. That’s unfortunate.

      • “Bad artistic rendering”

        That sounds like a certain terminal I know…

      • Elm’o, you’re being intellectually dishonest.

        Uptown, they didn’t show up, mainly because Brown was pretty clear on what he intended to use that site for. They weren’t interested in wasting their time fighting that. Could they have and should they have? Probably, but I doubt the outcome changes.

        Coli North, absolutely foolish plan. A bad joke is probably an understatement. That’s the only agreement, though.

        VC, that was Oakland’s version of Coli North. Literally. It was the same half baked circle the map and hope people leave because “reasons” and then build there. Except no one who owned businesses there were willing to move. Sound familiar? That’s because it’s, as I said, exactly what was dumb about Coli North. It was never a possibility. Why did Wolff sit on the sidelines? Because he knew, from experience, how absurd it was.

        HT, GET OVER IT. It was never a legitimate site. Period.

        So really, I’m not seeing the city trying and I’m not seeing the team trying. So if you’re going to bash Wolff, you gotta bash your lover as well.

    • Nav, first, yes many of us want to see the Raiders leave Oakland. I’d pack their moving trucks myself if it would get them out of town faster.

      Second. Coliseum City gets continued scrutiny because it’s a pipe dream with a list of unrealized deliverables as long as my arm. Nevermind the fact there is STILL no funding for it after 2 years which ultimately makes it a non-project other than being a political talking piece for Jean Quan. And why should this blog or anyone hold Wolff responsible for not getting behind such a project? Anyone who is paying attention knows there is no reason Wolff should support it. This project IF they ever closed that billion dollar funding gap, would not give Wolff any site control and would leave him out half a billion dollars which he’d have to pay back himself. Asking other people to blow their money is asinine.

      And similarly no one is holding the San Jose plan to task because it is not a money sink. Wolff can make it work financially with sponsorship and increased season ticket/suite revenues not available in Oakland. He’ll still be out cash personally, but not nearly as much initially.

      We know you have blinding Oakland glasses on, but reality is that Coliseum City was never going to happen. It’s a pipe dream that was concocted dependent on 3 teams providing the lion share of the funding for venues which have no realistic way to recoup their owners investments.

    • @ Elmano
      I really hope Oakland can retain the A’s and Raiders, as you know, but In all fairness the A’s have been kept out of San Jose by the Giants/MLB, if they are ever granted the South Bay, I’m sure ML will scrutinize each proposal the same way.
      Actually ML scrutinizes every reasonable and sometimes unreasonable idea, and then takes more time on it (including the efforts in Oakland), and then the people who criticize him, and do little more than cheerlead for Oakland.
      I’m convinced if the A’s ever get a new venue in Oakland or San Jose, it will be partly due to the default questions he is willing to ask.

      • Marine Layer has scrutinized the Diridon site and it all came up smelling like roses. Power plant? What power plant? The city doesn’t own all the required parcels and AT&T owns a building on site? No problem here. Everything comes up smelling like roses in San Jose for Marine Layer.

      • @Nav – That site has a tiny fraction of the obstacles Coliseum City and Howard Terminal face.

      • Elmo, there is no power plant on the Diridon site. There is a power substation next to it that they’ve already designed around. But it’s not in the way of anything…

  15. Daily reminder that Mark Davis hasn’t spent a dime on anything related to stadium development in Oakland and has made it clear that he wants to see a massive public subsidy involved.

  16. Marine Layer,

    So you equate my original comment with SMGVII attacking me personally by writing that I’m “I’m a shit stain of a person?”

    Yeah, I guess no harm no foul. Those two comments deserved the same treatment?

    You really need to reprimand the guy for his bully tactics as well as his on-going personal insults and profanity.

  17. This project can work as long as Davis and Wolff sign on. It’s great news that a new investor has come forward. There is plenty of space for this massive project. There’s plenty of space for the ancillary developments which would make the project feasible for both the A’s and Raiders. We’re talking a possible 800 acres here. Even of the project ends up whittled down to 400 acres it still more than enough area for the housing, hotels, and research and development envisioned for the project.

    • Where’s the economic analysis that proves this

      “There’s plenty of space for the ancillary developments which would make the project feasible for both the A’s and Raiders.”

      • You mean “the economic analysis” based on current market valuations in the area? The project is a transformative huge 800 acre project. There is nothing comparable in the United States. Property values in the project will be much higher than the current valuations in the surrounding neighborhood.

        It’s about a commitment to a community which is under valued and under capitalized. Do I think a person with Wolff’s background and makeup would see the potential in anything in Oakland? Absolutely not. This is why Wolff and his fellow money changer, John Fisher, have been fighting and scheming to leave Oakland for so long.

  18. Still waiting for that concrete economic analysis that explicitly states that multiple stadiums can be built with enough room left over for sufficient ancillary development to help the developer(s) turn a profit… man, this is a long wait…

    • Wolff won’t sign on to Coliseum City because either a: he hates poor victim Oakland or b: the numbers don’t pencil out and the A’s would not control their own destiny. It must be the former, right? Isn’t that what we’re supposed to believe?

  19. re: This is why Wolff and his fellow money changer, John Fisher, have been fighting and scheming to leave Oakland for so long. ….Three of the A’s four ownership groups since 1968 have all tried to leave Oakland (the fourth sold to cut the flow of red ink). So either: Poor Oakland keeps getting stuck with meanie owners or the city has not proven to be a profitable place for a Major League Baseball team, unless subsidized by the other franchises. It must be the former, right?

    • No, it’s just greed. They think they can make MORE if they were able to get to San Jose. It’s not Oakland because the Warriors make a ton of money in Oakland by selling out their nearly 20,000 seat arena. The money changers on both franchisers are greedy irresponsible capitalists who don’t care that they will damage an entire city with their irresponsible greed.

      • @Nav – The ballpark is going to cost more than $600 million. At 5% that’s $32 million a year. The A’s get around $32 million in stadium revenue annually. They have to be able to pay the bills before they get to the greed part.

  20. Wolff won’t sign on to anything in Oakland because from day one, when he took control of this franchise, his goal has been to build in San Jose where his business interests are located. Right now Wolff is using Oakland for a few years until he gets “kicked out” and MLB has to come to his rescue and “give him” San Jose.

    At this point Wolff just stands on the sideline as he’s done for EVERY proposal or possible site in Oakland for the last 11 years. Oakland made a huge mistake giving Wolff a lease which does toning but muck up the prospects for Coliseum City to go forward.

  21. ML, I’m thankful for continuous coverage. I’ve learned so much from you since 2005 in the areas of local politics, EIRs, transit oriented development, and legal terms. You are like the AN of sports business; analytical, yet personal. Sometimes I worry about how you’re doing with all the haters on twitters bashing you because their opinions are not grounded in reality. You made me see the light-I was once a diehard Oakland-only partisan who read OAFC (is that site still around) daily but since the Cisco Field (Wm Springs) era I find myself both agreeing and anticipating your next posts. The A’s need a ballpark. Oakland, SJ, or elsewhere in Norcal- does it matter where: no. I appreciate your great work. The comments section used to be interesting, but now it has become pretty inane. Keep up the great work and don’t let the haters push you to quit. Also thanks to your twitter feed, I’ve learned much.

    • Thank Bryceh. It’s the occasional word of encouragement that keeps me going.

    • @Bryceh

      Yeah, I hear you. I was never a Oakland-Only person, but definitely a Pro-Oakland person and I can say through ML’s hard work and those that comment here in a positive manner which are most, I find myself more a Pro-A’s person that would just like a new venue in the Bay Area. (San Jose, Oakland, hell Point Richmond)
      ML, you are a grown man and I’m sure you don’t need our approval, at the same time most would like to know from time to time they are appreciated, so thanks again for what you do.

      • Point Richmond would be boss! It could look like a lighthouse

      • agreed i was at that may 2002 rally and then meeting at oakland city hall and was very much pro “oakland” in the early to even mid 2000s. but really i’ve just been pro “bay area” for a while now. i just want a new park somewhere locally. i don’t care if it’s in sj, oakland, or wherever. i’ll continue to believe if the a’s were to be allowed in sj that they would’ve built a park by now while the city of oakland continues to twiddle their thumbs hoping somebody saves the sinking ship that is pro sports in the city.

        i don’t want to see the a’s move out of the area and unlike some of those on the fringes of the oakland only movement i’d wouldn’t want the a’s to move out of the bay area if they can’t stay in oakland which is something i’ve read and heard for well over a decade now at different sites, one was mentioned above that i too also used to go to.

        the garbage and yes i call it garbage by those die hard oakland only fans is nauseating when they clearly don’t know all the facts and or history on certain sites and scenarios that’s happened in the past and spew lies and info that is false but it fits their agenda so they keep running with it. stuff like wolff sabotaged victory court even though it was fool’s gold to even think all those businesses would leave that area.

        they live in their own little bubble of a world where oakland is the true victim and the city officials have been screwed time over time by the a’s management and even coming up with conspiracies like the a’s brass purposely creating all the sewage issues over the last year or two to make it easier for the a’s to leave the coliseum and in the end the city of oakland.

        never mind the plumbing system is something the a’s can’t fix even if they wanted to and it’s the city’s job to maintain and keep the venue up and running clearly what we’ve seen of the coliseum falling apart recently should be placed the shoulders of the city of oakland and not the a’s org.

  22. Yeah, let’s just move the Oakland A’s anywhere in the Bay Area and call them the Lew Wolff A’s. Who cares about the Oakland part? Right? We’ll just throw the Oakland part away. Also, Let’s go Royals! I’m very happy tonight. It’s nice to see Frisco eat a little humble pie.

    • New York Jets and Giants play in New Jersey. Dallas Cowboys play in Arlington. SF 49ers play in Santa Clara. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim don’t play in the city or county of Los Angeles. Detroit Pistons play in Auburn Hills. Buffalo Bills play in Orchard Park. Washington Redskins play in Landover, Maryland. The Tampa Bay Rays play in St Petersburg, FL. The Atlanta Braves are going to play in Cumberland, Georgia. The Phoenix Coyotes play in Glendale (although they just changed their name to the Arizona Coyotes). The NY Islanders play in Uniondale. The Philadelphia Union play in Chester, PA. New York Redbulls play in Harrison, NJ. Real Salt Lake plays in Sandy, UT. The LA Galaxy play in Carson, CA. The Chicago Fire play in Bridgeview, IL. FC Dallas plays in Frisco, TX.

      Teams aren’t always named after the “host” city.Get over it.

      • Oh, then they’ll stay the “Oakland A’s” playing somewhere in the Bay Area. OK, I can live with that.

      • @ SMG

        I think you actually covered all of them, impressive.

      • By your warped thinking, the name Minnesota Twins is disrespectful and offensive to the city of Minneapolis.

      • @SMG – The Phoenix Coyotes became the Arizona Coyotes this year, leaving only one “Phoenix” branded team, the Suns. People in the area identify more with the state as the metro has grown.

      • @ML

        That sort of naming convention works in states where there’s really only one pro sports market, and even then, some choose nor to use it. It works in places like Minnesota, North Carolina, Colorado, Arizona, etc. I think “Arizona” makes more sense for the Coyotes’ name (even though hockey there makes zero sense). I included it because it came to mind as I was going through the list in my head and after looking it up I was too arbitrarily lazy to delete it.

  23. I keep hearing that Oakland has to make a choice, between the A’s and Raiders. I’m not sure if they have a real choice to make, what we could have here is two men, in Wolff and Davis that simply want it to appear that Oakland has to make a choice, so each organization has evidence for there perspective leagues to say “We made a good faith effort”, particularly in the case of Wolff, because on the surface it makes much more sense to go with a baseball team and venue, then with a football team and venue.
    It seems as though Oakland only gets a choice, concerning the A’s, if they either tell the Raiders no or the Raiders tell them no, but Oakland can’t afford to tell the Raiders no, based on a Wolff promise that he will look real hard at the site with the condition of course, that Oakland gives all available land at the site to him, under those circumstances that’s not a reasonable choice, because it could vary well involve telling the Raiders no with a commitment in hand (if they do), to tell the A’s yes without one.

    It appears Oakland has to make a choice, but I think it’s the Raiders that will make a choice, which will make it appear that Oakland made one, if the Raiders leave then the A’s will probably choose to stay in Oakland, the choices are the Raiders and then the A’s to make.
    The idea that the city of Oakland has much of a choice, gives the city of Oakland a lot more power in this situation, then most want to give them otherwise.

    • A football stadium would be much more versatile than a baseball only stadium. Oakland could use a football stadium for soccer, conventions, track and field, and even for a possible Bay Area Olympics.

      • @ Elmano

        Baseball has 81 dates a year, football has 10, plus a baseball venue cost almost half of what a football venue cost and takes up fare less space.
        If Oakland acutely had a choice, which you can tell by my last comment, I don’t think so, but if they did I think it would be much starter for them to choose the baseball venue.

      • @ Elmano

        Although, I appreciate your point concerning different uses for a football venue.

      • Yes, let’s put a track around the football field and ruin the football sight lines. And as I’ve said, Oakland is not going to take any convention business away from Frisco. San Jose can’t and Oakland won’t, either. These ideas make as much sense as your previous suggestion that Oakland lure an MLS team to a new Raiders football stadium, even though MLS has made it clear it wants smaller, soccer-specific stadiums, not teams being subtenants in gigantic NFL stadiums.

  24. Jesus H. Christ, could you be any more delusional and bitter? It’s a rhetorical question. The answer is no. Take ML’s advice and make some new (and actually factual) points.

    • The answer to what? You lost me.

      • If anything, Oakland officials are conspiring to get the A’s out of town and appease the Raiders. Wolff opposes the CC plan 100% because his goal is to own and develop land at the CC site – The CC plan does not allow that.

        San Jose city officials, conversely, will sell Wolff their property at the Diridon site and allow Wolff to develop it. Oakland officials could the situation much easier by simply offering the A’s a similar situation – and sell them land at the CC site. Blame Oakland – not Wolff.

      • @duffer

        “Blame Oakland – not Wolff”

        We all know Nav isn’t gonna do that.

    • @SMG – Also, unlike a few other franchises, the A’s are not negotiating with San Antonio or LA for a possible move there – or moving from Oaktown to SF (even though the Dubs were terrible ( under .500) for two decades – and still achieved routine sellout crowds at Oracle after all that horrible performance)

      • I find it interesting that there are still comments being made by city officials about retaining the Warriors, and then JQ shows up at a press conference that has “We ❤ our Teams" signs for the Raiders and A's, but not Warriors. They can't even be consistent and get their story straight at the simplest, easiest level.

  25. All let me clarify some inaccuracies & false information that is on this site and some like to spit out on twitter based on the little information you receive in news articles and media. Don’t you realize the M&R reports and other such leaks are information leaked for a reason. Have a mind of your own, research look at ALL the details, investigate and connect the dots on your own and come to your own conclusion, and stop feeding off what one person post as news from his/hers single narrative that clearly has a certain skewed perspective for one city over another, or one team over another.

    First, CC is a go and some of you have stated and made a running joke of the multiple investors, yes Quan screwed up on the Prince of Dubai. But as stated in the breakdown above about Forest City is false, the reason why they wanted out was because the time line of there part of the development was at the very end and years on out so it was never a guarantee that there part would ever come to realization that’s a fact straight from the source in negotiations not politicians or news articles.

    Second you all are on here and twitter talking about Colony Capital being out again false, New City Development Group came in to add money to this project and or for the Raiders stadium alone, Colony Capital is still on board with their money adding this investment group spreads out the investment over multiple groups so its not as big as a burden on one group. The money is on the table period.

    Third you saying Mark Davis isn’t on board why wasn’t he at the Press conference, simple answer it is all not final why would he jump the gun, keep the pressure on publicly? The city wanted to announce it Tuesday but the NFL has to approve this deal with investors etc along with the 200 mil from the league so they said to wait off on approval. The NFL has the offer as we speak and then you will see Mark and the city go public. You all seen pictures/video and so on from the new investor form the media session in Quans office prior to the press conference on Tuesday. But what you don’t know is before the media was allowed there and contacted to do a media session Mark Davis was in the meeting with all parties earlier on in the day, he is the one that signed off on the extension, the ENA would be over if he didn’t give the ok. Also the 180 from Larry Reid who has thrown many shots at Quan during her tenure as mayor, why would he be standing by her at the conference you say? guess what he was “shown the money.” Remember that famous quote you all loved the mimic and quote on here? now its real and he see’s it is.

    As for the A’s you all and Lew love to repeat that he wants to control his destiny, guess what here it is, if he is so good at what he does how about he be the master developer? or bring his team in? that is oh yea if he wants to give his “good faith effort” all parties have said they are open to any and everything lets see if Lew follows through or is this still the front/ stall tactic until that SJ suit gets tossed.

    Also the ENA can be ratified to include Wolff if he stepped to the plate, just like the Forrest City group was withdrawn, and this New City Group was added.

    @jeffreyaugust yes this is Karim, I used to post under this name but I guess I was providing to much Pro Oakland information for this site and magically I couldn’t post anymore, and yes the 500 million is real money on the table, so there goes the missing gap you all have said would never happen. So now we wait for a month or so for the next announcement and see what the new Lew Wolff stall tactic will be. Or will he be convinced and drop the bombshell on everyone and sign on to the development? or sale the team? we will see.

    • @K – What inaccuracies? There is no public information to go on. All you’re doing is leaking information (which is rich), most of which is highly speculative. When there are deal terms on the table for the public to scrutinize, then we can talk about inaccuracies.

      If CC or Forest City before them truly believed in the deal they would have the financial plans ready to go, and they wouldn’t need to lighten their exposure to risk by giving up control of the deal. Each time that happened it was a major shakeup and it was underreported. You went a long way to explain that Forest City didn’t think the deal penciled out for them. That’s exactly what happened. Then Colony/HayaH comes in, takes 6-9 months to figure things out, and they can’t either. Now Renaissance/New City has come in and you guys want them to deliver the deal. The problem is that the fundamentals of the deal haven’t changed. It’s still very iffy and full of weird variables. If the fundamentals work, the money can be lined up quite easily. Just tell me – why is there no financial model yet? Even for just one stadium? It’s mind boggling that they could have gone so long and not delivered on that.

      Look at Floyd Kephart’s quote:
      “It’s not just going to flower up. But we believe that we can open negotiations … and identify the things that need to be done.”

      If the money’s there he doesn’t have to say that. Anyone who’s going to put a dime into this project wants to know where that dime goes. So far everyone’s afraid to articulate the problems getting the deal done. Is it because of the long game and poor short-term payoff? Probably. Is it because development potential is limited with only the Raiders? Most likely. Still, no one’s talking about addressing the costs, the remaining debt at the Coliseum, none of that. So don’t come in and start correcting me when, frankly, you’re being fed lines. I’ve heard inside stuff too from the league side, and you know what? There’s very little confidence in Coliseum City to put it mildly. There’s still trouble in figuring out whether the stadium can properly qualify for G-4 funds, especially when the league is trying to figure out if it can send those funds to LA instead. They don’t hand those loans out like candy, you have to earn it. I’ve tried to model the deal as a layman, and every time I’m scratching my head. Which is fine, that’s above my pay grade. But I’ve heard the same thing from so many others more experienced in development.

      Get some real numbers, something we can sink our teeth into, and I’ll believe you. Until then, it’s all a sell job for some desperate politician running 3rd in the polls.

    • Look at all that proof you don’t have…

    • @ K

      Please don’t lump everyone who comments here together, there are a myriad of different thoughts and opinions expressed on this blog. You may recall, I have on more then one occasion, expressed appreciation for your contribution of information and thought. I also don’t. hold some of the opinions, you suggested were the overall view of the people that comment here.

  26. @ K

    If Davis is for real, we will all find out soon enough. if he is then great, if he isn’t or can’t pull it off, that will make it easier for the A’s to get something done. Frankly I sick and tired of Wolff, Davis, the San Francisco Giants, Major League Baseball, the city of Oakland, Alameda County, Governor Brown, the present Mayor of Oakland, along with a list of people and agencies I will hold responsible if the A’s leave the Bay Area.

    • Wolff is quoted in that new Merc article as saying they aren’t looking anywhere outside the Bay Area, which has been the case the entire time this saga has gone on.

  27. But he’ll be hated for even considering San Jose while Mark Davis gets a free pass for commissioning a study on a move to San Antonio and also talking to LA. Go figure…

  28. I find it interesting that both sides signed a new deal after outgoing mayor Chuck Reed met the incoming commish. The azzhole Selig refused to even talk to Reed.

  29. That’s the difference between Wolff and Davis, Wolff actually wants to build in the Bay Area period.
    Would he rather build in San Jose then Oakland? The answer is painfully obvious at times, but if he can’t get San Jose he may be willing to do it in Oakland.

  30. Went to Levi’s Stadium last night. It’s incredible. Anyone who bashes it simply doesn’t know what he’s talking about. And I am anything but a 49er fan. A couple of points: Comparing the Coliseum west side club to the gargantuan, ultra-modern club at Levi’s just makes no sense at all; there really shouldn’t be a second $1 billion+ NFL stadium built in the Bay Area. Levi’s is sufficient. The Raiders failed to get in on the ground floor and now the place is all decked out in 49er red but that’s the Raiders fault. Move to Levi’s, give the Coliseum property to the A’s and be done with it. Everybody wins. Or, does Oakland pursue a second $1 billion+ NFL stadium that nobody wants to pay for just to keep from bruising its own ego, and Mark Davis pursue one because Levi’s would not be a good place for a statue of Al?

  31. I see you took my nahas lin and ran with it. No credit given to me. Typical blogger scum.

  32. Pingback: Oakland Raiders on the Move?

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