East Bay Awarded Grant to Support Industrial Growth

By SLNext
In Uncategorized
Aug 4th, 2023
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The East Bay Economic Development Alliance (East Bay EDA), along with San Leandro and neighboring communities, have been awarded a grant to develop model site design standards, infrastructure financing toolkits, and technical assistance programs to support the East Bay’s valuable industrial areas.

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On June 28, 2023, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) awarded a $500,000 pilot grant to the East Bay Economic Development Alliance (East Bay EDA) to advance their Priority Production Areas (PPA) in San Leandro, Oakland, Fremont, and Union City. The MTC also awarded the City of San Leandro $1.8M in Priority Development Area (PDA) Planning Grants for infrastructure and site planning in the Bay Fair area. (More info on this in the coming weeks!)

Priority Production Areas have been identified by the Metropolitan Bay Area’s (MTC) Plan Bay Area for industrial uses, which provide goods, services, tax revenues, and valuable jobs close to housing in the East Bay. The East Bay’s industrial employment lands are one of the region’s greatest strategic advantages within the greater Bay Area, offering incomparable quantity and diversity of industrial land uses and buildings compared to the rest of the region.

Led by East Bay EDA and the cities of Fremont, Oakland, San Leandro and Union City, the multi-jurisdictional project titled “Leading the Next Generation of Industrial Buildings and Districts” will implement modern, resilient building and site design standards in seven PPAs as well as provide technical assistance to cities seeking financing mechanisms to fund critical infrastructure needs in their industrial districts.

The benefits of the industrial sector continue to be central to the fiscal health of San Leandro. Roughly one third of all San Leandro jobs are in the Manufacturing, Construction, Transportation and Wholesale sectors, employing over 16,000 people. Manufacturing positions offer career pathways and provide living wages to persons with a diversity of education levels. Additionally, business to business and construction activities generate around 33% of the City’s sales tax revenues, contributing over $10.8 million to the City’s General Fund annually.

The fast-growing I-880 corridor cities of Fremont, Oakland, San Leandro, and Union City continue to drive demand for industrial repositioning and in recent years, have attracted a growing number of advanced industries seeking modern, flexible spaces to accommodate a variety of functions, including R&D, manufacturing, logistics, and more. At the same time, these PPAs are located in low-lying areas and along the Hayward Fault, making these areas vulnerable to sea-level rise and seismic activity. The project will bolster economic diversity and the continual growth of innovation industries by also working to ensure these building and infrastructure investments will be resilient and responsive to climate change.

“As demand heats up for East Bay industrial space, we see this moment as an opportunity to prepare and design for the next generation of flexible and resilient industrial buildings and districts,” said Carol Dutra-Vernaci, MTC Commissioner and Mayor of the City of Union City. “This pilot project will assist cities in evaluating and reviewing current and future development proposals, provide developers clear direction of our goals, and serve as a model for other industrial cities.”

In Contra Costa County, MTC has also provided a grant for the “Northern Waterfront Priority Production Areas Technical Assistance Project,” which will identify and implement common tools for infrastructure improvements and pave the way for new industrial developments, businesses and jobs across multiple Priority Production Areas (PPAs) of the County and the Cities of Concord, Pittsburg, Antioch, and Oakley.

For more information about MTC-ABAG’s Priority Production Area Program, please visit the MTC website.

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