With Raiders owner Mark Davis taking his team to Las Vegas and Warriors owner Joseph Lacob taking his team across the bay to San Francisco, Oakland will be left with one professional sports team.
The Athletics, through team President Dave Kaval, have announced that they want to build their privately financed stadium at East 8th Street and 5th Avenue near Laney College in Oakland.
The stadium is set to open for the 2023 season if everything goes to plan.
The A’s have been presented with a unique opportunity to become the epicenter of Oakland sports without the company of the Raiders and the Warriors.
There is a void in the Oakland sports world since the Warriors and the Raiders formally announced their impending departure.
The A’s could build a stadium as great and long lasting as Wrigley Field in Chicago or Fenway Park in Boston. They can also make it an intimate place to watch baseball like Camden Yards in Baltimore.
The franchise can reward its city and loyal fan-base with a world class baseball facility.
This location offers many more things than just easy freeway access and a short route to the nearest BART station (Lake Merritt).
The proposed stadium will feature a view of downtown Oakland in left field, Lake Merritt in center field and the Oakland hills in right field.
This will bring back the nostalgia of the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum before Mount Davis was built as an expansion for the Raiders — when they returned after their exodus to Los Angeles.
The franchise will have to hear out the residents (90 percent are renters and business owners of the Chinatown and San Antonio districts).
City officials have made it clear that there is a concern for those neighborhoods becoming gentrified.
Another big hurdle for the franchise is that it must convince the Peralta Community College District Board of Governors to sell the land which currently contains the college district offices. The A’s have proposed to build parking for Laney, but it is unclear if it will be shared with the team or if they will have separate lots.
The team could also help connect the estuary and Lake Merritt into a park that would stretch along the canal. This is already in the works thanks to the tax dollars from Measure DD, which is providing funding to extend a bay trail from the lake to the bay.
With the A’s choosing the Peralta site, the front office has a chance to change the look of a run down industrial side of Oakland.
The stadium will show off the side of Oakland (downtown/Lake Merritt) that a national audience hasn’t seen before.
And it’s about damn time.
Efrain Valdez is the social media editor for The Advocate. Contact him at evaldez.t[email protected]