Richmond council approves up to 4,000 housing units for southern shoreline

Project-reltated images credited to The City of Richmond.

Richmond City Council on Tuesday approved a plan for a mixed-use development consisting of between 2,000 and 4,000 housing units on the city’s southern Bay shoreline.

The possible 20-year development agreement for the Campus Bay Project — which includes 89.6 uninhabited acres just west of the UC Berkeley Field Station that was formerly used for industrial manufacturing — features plans to construct residential and mixed-use buildings ranging from three to eight stories, about 50,000 square feet of retail, business and service uses, including a 20,000 square foot neighborhood grocery store, and about 30.7 acres of parks and open space, including new parks, existing habitat areas, and construction of a trailhead with parking and restroom facilities to serve users of the San Francisco Bay Trail. 

As part of the project, the developer, HRP Campus Bay Property, LLC, has agreed to a number of community benefits, including at least $22 million to help support the Richmond Promise college scholarship and guidance program, for improvements to Fire Station 64 and the Booker T. Anderson Community Center, and for local schools, the Bay Trail trailhead and development of the grocery store.

The project has met stern opposition from some in the community concerned over industrial contamination at the site. City officials say remediation plans have been approved by the state’s Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) and, once done, the area will be safe for residential use. Project opponents who include members of the Richmond Progressive Alliance (RPA) claim the DTSC-approved remediation plan doesn’t do enough to protect future inhabitants.

Richmond Mayor Tom Butt and Councilmembers Nat Bates, Demnlus Johnson III and Ben Choi voted in favor of moving forward with the development agreement, Councilmember Jael Myrick abstained from voting and Councilmembers Melvin Willis and Eduardo Martinez, both members of the RPA, voted in opposition.