New renderings have been published ahead of the Oakland Design Review Committee meeting tomorrow for 533 Kirkham Street in West Oakland, Alameda County. The 289-unit project aims to replace a surface parking lot directly across from the West Oakland BART Station. Tidewater Capital is the project developer.
The 85-foot tall structure will yield around 254,850 square feet with 237,860 square feet for housing, 2,990 square feet for retail, and 8,940 square feet for the ground-level garage. Unit sizes will vary, with 52 studios, 74 junior one-bedrooms, 58 one-bedrooms, and 104 two-bedrooms. Of the 289 apartments, 13 will be designated as affordable to very low-income households.
The garage will include 40 cars, despite the proximity to BART. The project plans state that “given that the project site is located directly across the street from the West Oakland BART Station, the city is precluded under state law from requiring any off-street parking for automobiles.” Additional parking will be included for 95 bicycles.
Solomon Cordwell Buenz is the project architect. The overall massing avoids the trappings of collage-like podium-style apartments. Illustrations show an organized design with a gridlike post-and-lintel pattern and a cohesive palette of natural stone. The exterior will be wrapped with textured grey or green granite panels over an Exterior Insulation Finishing Systems facade and metal panels for the carved-out Juliet balconies. The ground level will feature floor-to-ceiling glass around the retail spaces.
PGAdesign is overseeing landscape architecture. The ground-level space will include new planters and trees along 7th Street and Kirkham Street sidewalks and a dog run in the backyard. The O-shaped ground-level apartment will include access to a small private patio. The second floorplan will be U-shaped, opening up more open space for six residences.
The 1.17-acre proposal is one of several that would contribute to a new dense mixed-use district around the West Oakland BART Station. While construction is moving forward on the affordable housing at 1666 7th Street by Elaine Brown, others have not yet started. Most significantly, the Bay Area News Group recently reported that the 1,032-unit plan for 500 Kirkham Street faces a loan default and possible foreclosure. The developer purchased the site in 2017 but has yet to win a construction loan.
Immediately surrounding the train station, BART has partnered with a joint venture team and Turner Development to create 762 homes, 382,000 square feet of office space, and 75,000 square feet of retail across four parcels on BART-owned land. The project has been approved, but construction has yet to start. Other substantial proposals include the 275-foot tall tower with between 400 to 500 units at 600 Castro Street by Frank and Daphne Yang. The Michaels Organization has planned an eight-story infill with 222 units at 1396 5th Street called The Golden West. Lastly, YIMBY covered the preliminary application for a 376-unit apartment infill by Riaz Capital at 1300 7th Street.
The meeting is scheduled to be held tomorrow, June 28th, starting at 3 PM. The meeting will be held in person at the Oakland City Hall Council Chamber. For more information about how to attend, see the meeting agenda here.