Saturday, January 24, 2009

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why don't the Oakland A's stay in Oakland?
A: The A's want to build a new stadium, but cannot reach a deal with the city of Oakland.

Q: Why do the Oakland A's consider Warm Springs site now? I though they plan to have the stadium in Pacific Commons.
A: The A's cannot reach a deal with the retailers and landlord in Pacific Commons. So they now turn thier focus to the Warm Springs BART site, close to residential areas.

Q: Why do the Oakland A's want to move to Fremont?
A: Back in 2006, the A's want to move to San Jose for the south bay fan base. But Santa Clara county is Giants territory. So they chose Fremont. [Now MLB will allow the A's talk to San Jose because the territory right will be decided by 30 MLB team owners, not the Giants.]

Q: What will happen to the traffic on 880/680, Auto Mall, Osgood, Fremont, Grimmer, Warm Springs and Mission Blvd?
A: The traffic in the area is already very congested and over-capacity during weekday late afternoon commute hours. With 32000+ fans and 10,000+ cars, there will be gridlocks everywhere during game days (50% of days from April to Septembet/October). It will also affect the traffic on 237/880 and Dumbarton/84/880. Your commute time will easily be extended substantially. The A's just said they will mitigate them, but still have no detail plan. Traffic and parking are the main concerns from the Pacific Commons retailers.

Q: Will the new BART station in Warm Springs alleviate the traffic?
A: The A's are expecting 10% more BART ridership than Pacific Commons site. But the majority of fans will still drive to the stadium. Now the A's delay the new ball park opening to 2014 (in Wamr Springs NOP). But the ealiest possible time for extenstion to San Jose is 2018-20. Please keep in mind both the Warm Springs BART and San Jose extension could also be delayed because of current economic downturn and state budget cut.

Q: Is a stadium the best use of land around the planned Warm Springs BART station?
A: No. It will be very similar to the current Oakand Colesium with lots of parking lots. The traffic will be jammed during game days, and the land will be deserted during non-game days. This is certainly not the best transient-oridented development. 

Q: Wouldn't a baseball stadium in Fremont be great?
A: Only if it's properly planned. The A's mention several times about their "downtown ballpark plan" and "one stadium does not make it downtwon". Baseball stadiums do best in an active, urban setting, surrounded by supporting/complementing businesses. They work best with exisitng downtown infrastructure. You don't build a stadium and suddenly become a "downtown". Neither location in Fremont is a good fit for a stadium.

Q: Will the stadium bring extra job and tax revnue to Fremont?
A: Most of the jobs will be temporary and seasonal. Some people think a stadium will bring more business, but a stadium and bad traffic will also scare away many potential good business and high-tech companies.

Q: Didn't the A's say there is "no cost" to the city?
A: The A's need to claim this on paper to avoid a city-wide referendum and they just need to "convince" the five-member city council. The A's will get many tax-breaks and kick-back revenues. Besides, who will pay for the large bill on the infrastructure, road upgrade, maintenance, extra police, etc? Actually a stadium is a money pit. Many cities are already burdened by the cost to build/maintain a stadium, let alone Fremont doesn't even have the infrastructue of a large city.

Q: Can Fremont police handle the extra crime it will bring in?
A: Oakland's population is about twice as Fremont's, but it has 10 times more violent crimes. Does the city of Fremont have enough resource and expertise to handle the extra traffic and activities around the stadium? Do you want Fremont to be the next Oakland? Your house value will go down, while your home/car insurance will cretainly go up. 

Q: Why will the mayor and city council still support the stadium even with strong opposition?
A: Some business groups and city officlials support the stadium, even the A's proposal is flawed in may aspects. There are many behind-the-door meetings in the past two years and they believe the A's one-side story and rosy revenue numbers.

Q: Didn't the mayor just win the election?
A: The A's strategically kept the stadium issue quiet during the election. Wasserman's statement only say he will support the plan "only if it's good to Fremont". Out of the 97,523 registered voters, 67,735 cast in the mayor's race. Wasserman only get 28,461 votes (42% of votes, and 29% of registered voters).

Q: Shouldn't the mayor and city council put the residents' best interest first?
A: We hope so. Please let them know your concern. Then the public will see whether they can speak out for the residents or just being the A's rubber stamp. 

Q: Are the A's and city following the proper process?
A: Many residents and business raise the issues. The whole process is not transparent, insufficient notice to the affected businees and residetents, insufficient scope session, etc. Have you seen any public townhall meeting in tha past two years?

(please joun FCN and add comment if you have more to add)


  1. Many people agree that this Stadium is a bad idea. However, what can we do about it? I didn't vote for the current mayor or the current city counsil...these people still got elected. How can we get our voice heard? I would not had bought our house/moved to this neighborhood if I knew about A's plans. The idea of living next to a baseball stadium is sickening. Who in their right minds would want to live next to a stadium considering all the noise, traffic and crime associated with it.

  2. With such a huge development plan in a residential area, I'm very surprised that the decision will be made by only the councils and the city mayor. Shouldn't it be put on the ballots to let the immediate affected people to vote for the decision?

    We have paid significant higher price to move to Warm Spring area for the wonderful school district. Should the stadium build around this area and drag our housing value down, who will be responsible for it? Will the city pay us back our potential lose of housing value due to having a stadium so close to our residential area?

    I live in Warm Spring and work in Hayward. I managed to get off work in time to pick up my kids from school in 30 mins. With the Stadium in Warm Spring, no doubt the traffic will become horrible during game days. Who'll be responsible to pick up my kids when I got stuck in a traffic because of the non-ordinary heavy traffic due to baseball game? Not even mentioning the potential crimes might associated with all the outsiders coming to the area due to the baseball game.

    Warm Spring is build as a residential area. Its been a wonderful community. Its been safe and the schools are great. I STRONGLY AGAINST to have a new baseball stadium build in Warm Spring area.

    Currently, Fremont Police does NOT EVEN respond to burglar alarm (to save budget and not enough manpower), how can they protect Fremont Citizen against the additional crimes that come with A’s Stadium. (In order for Fremont Police to respond, someone needs to confirm there’s burglary in action for them to respond. Ex: Your neighbor or family calls in to ask police for help.)
    Just couple years ago, Fremont Police always responds to burglar alarm. The Exact Same Fremont Mayor that wants the A’s Stadium made the change so Fremont Police does NOT respond to burglar alarm.
    These days experienced police officers are in demand and hard to recruit, it’s very likely we would only be able to hire rookie officers IF City agree to increase police staff. We don’t need rookie officers that could confuse Taser with Gun and repeat the Bart shooting incident in Oakland.

    Property tax revenue for City of Fremont will decrease drastically. The amount would be in the range of 400-thousand $ per year revenue lost for City and 1.2-million $ per year revenue lost for school.
    Warm Springs/Mission areas are high-end residential area, so with stadium around, property value likely to drop 100K to 400K per house. Conservatively, say each house price drop only 200K and only 1,000 houses are affected. That’s 200 million dollars of property tax lost. If we base on 1% tax rate and 20% distribution to City, 60% distribution to School; this would means 200 million x 1% x 20% =400 K budget lost per year for City and 200 million x 1% x 60% =1.2 Million budget lost per year for School.
    (Please see Redwood City/San Mateo County’s distribution for reference: )

  4. Is is possible to file class-action law suit against City of Fremont, A's, Council Members and Mayor, who did not properly plan what's best for Fremont and cause huge property value loss from this?