This is the last week for public comment on the draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the San Leandro shoreline development project.
On Monday night, another in a seemingly endless series of meetings and workshops was held to update the progress of the planned development at the marina.
By City Business Development Manager Cynthia Battenberg’s count, there have been 58 public meetings over the past decade regarding the marina.
Most residents want to keep it open as a boat harbor, but the city says the money just isn’t there to keep dredging the area, which is a natural mud flat.
Councilman Jim Prola said that a phone poll of residents indicated that most want the marina dredged, but there would not be enough support for a special tax to pay for the dredging.
So the plan for now is to allow the harbor to gradually silt up over the next few years, eliminating most boat traffic.
The city and Cal-Coast Developers are planning a large development with a new hotel, restaurant, housing, pedestrian boardwalk and other amenities.
The 75-acre project (53 acres on land and 23 on water) will remain owned by the city.
The project calls for the removal of the El Torito restaurant (city staff are in discussions with the owners about if they will seek another location), and also the removal of the Mulford Branch library (which would move to a new location) and the San Leandro Yacht Club building.
On the fate of the harbor, Battenberg’s report says: “It is being assumed that the harbor master’s office, fuel pump and 462 existing boat slips in the harbor basin would eventually be removed at such time as safe and navigable boating operations cease to exist.”
The marina and Horatio’s would stay as-is. Five holes on the nine-hole Marina golf course would be reconfigured as homes are built on that site.
The project will include a 150,000-square-foot office building, a new 200-room hotel, a 15,000-square-foot conference center, 354 housing units, three new restaurants and a new parking structure.
The public features would be an aquatic center, bocce ball court, picnic areas, pedestrian piers, a pedestrian and bike bridge, a fountain, and kayaking.
“This is a mixed development that will serve the people of San Leandro,” said Battenberg. “It will create a regional destination.”
Public speaker John Manuel said that the EIR could “look perfect from afar but (may be) far from perfect. He expressed concerns about noise from the Oakland airport.
The general manager of the Marina Inn spoke, saying she was afraid the new hotel could hurt her business.
Chamber of Commerce President Dave Johnson spoke in support of the development, as did former mayor Stephen Cassidy.
If all goes as planned, construction should break ground in March 2017, Battenberg said.
The full draft EIR is now available to read on the city’s website www.sanleandro.org/depts/cd/shoreline.
All written comments on the EIR must be received by 5 p.m. next Friday, Feb. 6. Email them to
with “comments on SL Shoreline Draft EIR” in the subject line or write to Jennifer Chin, Community Development Department, City of San Leandro, 835 East 14th St., San Leandro, CA 94577 or fax to 577-6007.