Dec 9 2010

Piedmont City Council Votes 4-1 to Certify Moraga Canyon EIR

The second hearing on the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Moraga Canyon sports field project attracted significant community input.  Among submissions from the public were form letters supporting the project, as well as individual letters from residents of Piedmont and Oakland for and against, and from the Oakland Community and Economic Development Agency Deputy Director Eric Angstadt urging the Council not to certify the EIR.  Materials: Read all 51 letters here.  View the Kieran Turan before and after animated illustration of the proposed project, which simulates the views while driving along Moraga with the berm wall and parking lots. View site drawing.  See hearing video.

Certification by the Council on a 4 -1 vote (with Councilman Garrett Keating voting no) of the Moraga Canyon sports complex project EIR on December 6th marks the beginning, rather than the end, of a long process to determine if a sports field facility should be built in Moraga Canyon based on community input, and hopefully, consensus.  The proposed project has been referred to the Recreation, Planning, and Park Commissions for their review, consideration, and recommendations prior to final City Council action.

The EIR studied the largest project proposal, which may allow the City Council to alter and reduce the plan without having to do another costly EIR. Specific aspects of the project, for instance the expensive pedestrian bridge and elevator across Moraga Avenue, could be dropped or altered in the final design, based on cost, community input, safety concerns, alternatives having less impact, and other considerations. Various alternatives to the plan have already been suggested during public input, including using the corporation yard, enlarging Coaches Field,  or  reducing the size of the project in Blair Park next to Moraga Avenue.  Further alternatives may be proposed as the process continues.

Requests have been made to install “story poles,”  skeletal wooden structures, in Blair Park to show the  the height and width of the proposed project and to give the community a better idea of the impact of the proposed project. Story poles are typically required by the Planning Department when homeowners are enlarging their houses to allow neighbors to better visualize proposals.

Dates for commission hearings have not yet been scheduled for consideration of the project.

One Response to “Piedmont City Council Votes 4-1 to Certify Moraga Canyon EIR”

  1. The video referenced is pretty crude. The “berm” is much more steeply angled than a real live berm and the “fence” is opaque, like a wall. Additionally, leaving out the trees and landscaping also is useful if you want to present a distorted picture of the proposed site. The video gives a very unrealistic impression of how the field and park will look. Compare to the proposed site drawings:

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