Baseball may be coming back to Emeryville if members of the Planning Commission and Council approve the latest “Sherwin Stadium” plans. Lennar development spokesman Kevin Ma confirmed in an email that they were shifting course on their planned 500 unit housing development to pursue a new home for the A’s. “After hearing from the community about all their ideas for park space, it became clear that what the community really wanted was a ball park.” The “Oakland” Oaks played in Emeryville of course from 1913-1955.
It’s been a rough week for Oakland as it was announced on Monday that NFL owners voted to allow the Raiders’ move to Las Vegas. The Warriors broke ground on their SF stadium earlier this year and are expected to move after the 2018 season. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf vowed to fight the plan that would leave her city without a major sports franchise. “People are saying that Oakland’s efforts to build a new stadium have been stalled for years like the Raiders’ stadium. We’re calling bullsh*t on that too.”
Mayor Scott Donahue expressed support for the project, but had concerns over singing of the national anthem prior to games. “I’m going to recommend that we sing Phil Ochs’ ‘Power and the Glory’ instead.” Vice Mayor John Bauters did not return our inquiries but tweeted out a selfie with an A’s cap flashing a “thumbs up” gesture with the caption “Can I throw out the first pitch?”. Councilmember Dianne Martinez expressed hope that this would be the first “Sanctuary Stadium” in the league.
The project still faces a number of obstacles to clear before it’s “shovel ready”. Public Works Director Maurice Kaufmann noted a preliminary Environmental Impact Report commissioned by LSA indicated only a moderate increase in traffic and impact on the Horton Street Bike boulevard.
It’s unclear if the development bonus requirement would mandate that 50% of the stadium be “family-friendly” and that at least 15% of the seats be designated “affordable”. The project’s connected “Ballpark Village” would contain about 100 housing units with ground floor retail. The stadium would also host concerts and events pending approval of a special cabaret license.
BTW, April Fools! This article is intended to be completely satirical. 😉