City Soliciting Creative Proposals for the Adaptive Reuse for the Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center; More Development RFPs on the way.
The City has released a Request for Proposals (RFP) for the rehabilitation, adaptive reuse and management of the historic Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center, located at the southern end of Lake Merritt near Laney College and the Oakland Museum of California. The offering presents a unique opportunity to return a monumental civic building to life. “The City of Oakland, the Oakland community and all our partners have done incredible work beautifying the Lake Merritt area over the last several years, and the stunning Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center represents a remarkable opportunity for the right investor to build on that success,” said Oakland Mayor Jean Quan. The City is open to a range of creative uses in the building, from performance and exhibit spaces to light industrial and maker space to commercial office and retail uses. Responses are due November 12, 2014. Later this month, the City will release an RFP soliciting mixed-use proposals for its property at Telegraph and 19th Street – referred to as Parcel 4 – in the heart of the bustling Uptown neighborhood. For more information, please contact Kelley Kahn or Jens Hillmer.
ArtPlace America Awards Grants to Oakland Projects
Two Oakland-based projects have won highly competitive ArtPlace America placemaking grants. The EastSide Arts Alliance won for “Oakland is Proud,” a series of five cultural plazas that it will develop along the International Boulevard Bus Rapid Transit route in East Oakland. The plazas will be used for ongoing cultural events, marketplaces, video screenings and other community gatherings. The second winner, Citizen Film, is creating a multimedia documentary telling the story of public housing entrepreneurs in Oakland and elsewhere who are greening their communities. The “Oakland is Proud” project also won a second award from the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information, please contact Cultural Arts Manager Steven Huss.
Radio’s Most Creative Programming: Made in Oakland
Oakland is a cultural mecca, so it’s no surprise that it’s also home to some of the most innovative programming in radio. Local luminaries include storyteller Glynn Washington of NPR’s Snap Judgment and hip-hop journalist and Professor Davey D, whose decade-long KPFA show Hard Knock Radio reaches a million listeners daily. Joining their award-winning ranks are the intrepid students of Youth Radio, who generate national news broadcasts as well as the 24-hour online music station AllDayPlay from their studio in Downtown Oakland. Youth Radio also teaches the technical and life skills that participants need for future careers in digital media. Available online is 99% Invisible, which calls itself, “a tiny radio show about design, architecture & the 99% invisible activity that shapes our world,” but has 17 million downloads and is one of the most popular podcasts on iTunes.
Get to Know Our Business Services: KivaZip, Tax Credit Assistance and More
The City of Oakland team offers support for businesses of every scale and growth stage, through our Business Assistance Center (BAC) and sector specialists. The City recently expanded the popular KivaZip program, which provides 0% interest loans to Oakland small businesses. KivaZip businesses will be featured this month at a KivaZip launch event on City Hall Plaza on October 8. City staff can also provide assistance securing state hiring tax credits and sales tax rebates, including the California Competes Tax Credit. This credit is available to businesses that want to come to California or stay and grow in California. Applications for this cycle will be accepted through October 27. For more information, contact BAC Coordinator Juno Thomas or Incentives Coordinator Susana Villarreal.
Uptown District Named One of APA’s “Great Places in America”
The American Planning Association named Uptown Oakland one of the 2014 “Great Places in America.” This program celebrates places of exemplary character, quality and planning. Oakland’s Uptown was honored for having a true sense of place, cultural and historical interest, community involvement and a vision for tomorrow. The APA states, “Great Places offer better choices for where and how people work and live. They are enjoyable, safe and desirable. They are places where people want to be — not only to visit, but to live and work every day.” Representatives from the American Planning Association presented the City of Oakland with the award at a press conference on October 1.
Global Engineering Firm Parsons Brinckerhoff Moves to Clorox Building
Parsons Brinckerhoff, a global leader in planning, engineering and construction, has captured a share of Oakland’s Class A Office space with a new lease at 1221 Broadway. Headquarters for the Clorox Company, the building was purchased by Westcore Properties in 2012 and offers newly renovated common areas as well as a direct connection to the 12th Street City Center BART station. Parsons Brinckerhoff has 14,000 employees and dozens of offices worldwide. For more information on Oakland’s office space opportunities, please contact Aliza Gallo.