Sherwin Williams Site Design Competition

1 min read

The toxic cleanup at the former paint factory officially came to a finish back in April (Ongoing air and groundwater quality testing can be monitored here). Final steps include grading (compacted earth is being covered with gravel), capping of the slurry wall, and adding asphalt along the Rifkin property line. The reality of the next phase of a massive development has begun. Diesels carting away toxic soils will no doubt be replaced by Diesels carting in construction materials augmented with the steady hum of heavy equipment. While the design for the new development has not been finalized and no timetable has been established, talk of the addition of an open space and the ongoing pedestrian bridge to Bay St. has gotten the attention of Park avenue district residents. The existing zoning map allows an entitlement for the construction of a single tower of up to 200 feet and a second tower of up to 150 feet. Additions that would dramatically impact the congestion and make-up of this historic section of Emeryville.

2011 Design Challenge
An AIA-SF/PG&E sponsored competition focused on the site of the former paint factory had five winners with sharply different looks and one shared goal: a future where new neighborhoods produce more energy than they consume. Their designs won’t necessarily be echoed by whatever eventually gets built. The value of the competition is that it shows how large “net zero” projects can be done in urban locales, and that there’s a desire among decision-makers to see that happen. A list of the five category entries can be seen here. | Read more on SFGate »


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Rob Arias

is a third generation Californian and East Bay native who lived in Emeryville from 2003 to 2021. Rob founded The E'ville Eye in 2011 after being robbed at gunpoint and lamenting the lack of local news coverage. Rob's "day job" is as a creative professional.

1 Comment

  1. These are fascinating concepts. From the evidence of recent E’ville developments, though, they will not be implemented. And you are right; what happens on that site will be a huge factor in determining the quality of life in 1500 Park Avenue. No one has more at stake than us, … and whoever will try to maximize their profits by developing it. But with 100-200 voters in the building, and a City Council where the margin of victory was 271 votes, it seems to me that we can have a say in the future of this site. Starting with rethinking the zoning. Anyone want to organize a group to meet with the City?

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