Friday, September 28, 2018

Comments on Terminal One pollution cleanup plan due Wednesday, Oct. 3

   POINT RICHMOND - Public comments about the latest proposal to clean up the remaining pollutants at the Terminal One site on Dornan Drive are due by Wednesday, Oct. 3.
     They should be sent to the San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board, 1515 Clay St., Suite 1400 Oakland, CA or directly via email to Jeff White of the water board: JEFF WHITE.
Terminal One site, adjacent to the Richmond Yacht Club
     This latest remedial action plan was the subject of a public hearing last week in Richmond. The proposal - which needs to be approved by the water board - is a prelude to actual removal of suspected toxic materials. If the cleanup plan is approved in its current form (or modified) it would then pave the wave for the eventual construction a proposed 316-unit residential project on the San Francisco Bay site. The developer is the Laconia Corporation.
     At the public hearing, representatives of the Brickyard Cove Alliance for Responsible Development raised issues and pointed out perceived shortcomings with the cleanup plan.
     This week, BCARD followed up with a letter to the water board, asking that the letter - and 11 prior sets of comments already submitted on the project - be taken into consideration by the state agency before it makes it a determination about whether to allow Laconia to move ahead with cleaning the pollutants from the former industrial site.
     The contaminants at the site include chlorinated solvents, petroleum and hydrocarbons along with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. The contamination is a legacy of the property's nearly 100 years  as a shipping and industrial site.
     "In the last fifteen years, the city has only sampled groundwater site-wide twice while the science regarding what are 'safe" toxic levels has become more stringent," the group wrote.
      "The City's own data shows that discharges above the aquatic levels are being leaked into the Bay. It seems the City and the Developer have consistently attempted to avoid thorough measures required to protect human health and the environment."
     At the public hearing, BCARD representatives asked that the developer increase the size and scope of a proposed "slurry wall" to keep any remaining pollutants in the soil (underneath the homes, proposed park and development grounds) from leaking into the Bay. They restated that request in their most recent letter to the water board.
     The remedial action plan proposed by the City of Richmond and Laconia includes:

 • Podium construction of residential structures;
• Collection, on-Site treatment, and off-Site discharge of most stormwater runoff;
• Raising Site grades and import of clean fill;
• Capping the Site with buildings, roads, pathways, and other hardscape;
• Slurry wall construction to mitigate potential petroleum discharges to San Francisco Bay;
• Landscaping as either common area maintained by the homeowner’s association or public openspace/parkland maintained by the City, in areas not covered with permanent, hardscapedfacilities; and
• Institutional controls prohibiting residents and visitors from excavating on the Site.

A site plan from the developer displayed at the public hearing



Thursday, September 20, 2018

Terminal One pollution cleanup plan likely 'on track' for approval, regulators say

   POINT RICHMOND - The latest proposed remedial action plan on how to complete the clean up of lingering pollutants at the Terminal One site in Point Richmond may be close to winning approval from the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board.
Jeffrey White
     "The RAP (remedial action plan) is on track for approval," Jeffrey White of the water quality control board said.
     White made his comment at the outset of a one and a half hour public hearing Wednesday evening on the RAP that included presentations by attorney Cleve Livingston (representing developer Laconia) and Frank Szerdy of the environmental consulting firm Wood of Oakland.
     The hearing was held at Richmond Public Library.
     The meeting was highlighted by close questioning from audience members about the cleanup plan itself, parking, scheduling of construction, dust control and particularly whether a proposed "slurry wall" is adequate.
     The slurry wall is supposed to keep remaining pollutants in the ground from flowing from underneath the proposed 316-unit condominiums and single family home development into San Francisco Bay.
Proposed slurry wall to contain pollutants on site
     Brian Lewis, a member of Brickyard Cove Alliance for Responsible Development said he is concerned that the 12-foot slurry wall won't be deep enough to stop flows from the property into the bay.
     Environmental consultant Szerdy said the slurry wall and other pollution control measures are part of a "conceptual plan" being presented with details the water board will consider before giving any final nod to the cleanup plan.
     "But it has to work," Szerdy said.
      Lewis also challenged the developer and consultant on whether there has been adequate sampling of the heavily polluted site. Terminal One's pollutants are a legacy of industrial use of the site beginning in 1913.
     The contaminants include chlorinated solvents, petroleum and hydrocarbons and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons on the Dornan Drive property.
     "You are making a lot of judgments on very little data," he said. Lewis added that in the last 15 years, there have been only two site-wide samplings completed.
Cleve Livingston 
     Developer representative Livingston said that if the RAP - or a modified version of it - is approved by the water quality control board, it's possible that cleanup work could begin in the spring of 2019.
    The public comment period on the proposed remedial action plan will remain open until Oct. 5.
    Comments can be sent in writing to the San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board, 1515 Clay St., Suite 1400, Oakland, California or directly via email to the water board's Jeff White.






Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Terminal One cleanup meeting tonight

  STORY UPDATED:
See: Terminal One cleanup 

 RICHMOND - The San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board will hold a public hearing tonight on a proposed plan to clean up a variety of chemical contaminants on the Terminal One site in Point Richmond.
   The cleanup is a precursor to construction of  a 316-unit housing development proposed by the Laconia Corporation to be constructed on the city-owned land.
     The meeting is from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Richmond Public Library, 325 Civic Center Plaza.
Historical industrial use of the proposed site for housing
     The contaminants include chlorinated solvents, petroleum and hydrocarbons - and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons on the Dornan Drive property. 
     The remedial action plan proposed by the City of Richmond and Laconia include:
 • Podium construction of residential structures;
• Collection, on-Site treatment, and off-Site discharge of most stormwater runoff;
• Raising Site grades and import of clean fill;
• Capping the Site with buildings, roads, pathways, and other hardscape;
• Slurry wall construction to mitigate potential petroleum discharges to San Francisco Bay;
• Landscaping as either common area maintained by the homeowner’s association or public openspace/parkland maintained by the City, in areas not covered with permanent, hardscapedfacilities; and
• Institutional controls prohibiting residents and visitors from excavating on the Site.
     The  Brickyard Cove Alliance for Responsible Development watchdog group has said this latest  cleanup plan falls short of ensuring that the site would be safe. Members of BCARD oppose the current plan as designed and are expected to address the board with details their concerns.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Rent control law highlight of Monday's Richmond City Council candidates' forum


Richmond City Council candidates 
R
ICHMOND
- Differences of opinion by city council candidates over the success - or failure - of the City of Richmond's rent control law drew plenty of applause and audience comments at Monday night's candidates' forum at East Brother Beer Company.
David Schoenthal said rent control 
"exacerbates" the problem
     Approximately 75 people attended the forum, sponsored by the Point Richmond Business Association and the Point Richmond Neighborhood Council.
     A series of questions were posed to the 10 council candidates who attended, including one early on about whether Richmond's rents control law was effective, needed to be repealed, or should be amended.
    And if amended, exactly how.
    Candidates who said they thought the law needed to be repealed drew the loudest applause from the audience, though supporters among the candidates stood their ground in support of the voter-approved rent control measure.
    Most of the candidates indicated that whether the city has a rent control law or not, the shortage of housing in Richmond is a serious problem.
    The 10 candidates who participated in the forum were:
    Vinay Pimple
    Demnlus Johnson
    Virginia Ramirez
    Nat Bates
    Ada Recinos
    Eduardo Martinez
    David Schoenthal
    Jim Rogers
    Cesar Zepeda
    Eleanor Thompson


Monday, September 17, 2018

Council candidates' forum, Terminal One review & Bridge Storage party this week

   RICHMOND - This week in Richmond there will be a city council candidates' forum tonight (Monday). Wednesday the San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board quality will hold a public hearing on a proposal to clean up the Terminal One site in Point Richmond. And Friday evening Bridge Storage and ArtSpace will hold an open house to show off improvements and new additions.

Richmond Candidates' forum

RICHMOND - The East Brother Beer Company at 1001 Canal Boulevard will host a candidates' forum tonight for those seeking election to Richmond City Council in the November election.
     The East Brother event runs from 6-8 p.m. and is open to the public.
     A spokesman for the company said last week that nine of the 13 candidates running for three council seats have said they will attend.

Terminal One Public Hearing
 RICHMOND - The San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board will hold a public hearing Wednesday on a proposed plan to clean up a variety of chemical contaminants on the Terminal One site in Point Richmond to pave the way for a 316-unit housing development proposed by the Laconia Corporation to be constructed on the city-owned land.
     The meeting is from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Richmond Public Library, 325 Civic Center Plaza.
     The contaminants include chlorinated solvents, petroleum and hydrocarbons - and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons on the Dornan Drive property. The land is adjacent to the Richmond Yacht Club to the east and Miller-Knox Regional Park to the west. It abuts San Francisco Bay on the south and Brickyard Cove Road to the north.

Bridge Storage & ArtSpace open house

RICHMOND - Bridge Storage and ArtSpace on Maine Avenue will hold an open house and launch party Friday from 5- 9 p.m.
     The public is invited to the free event.
     The open house and party is to celebrate opening of some newly completed co-working facilities at the site.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Richmond's Bridge Storage and ArtSpace hosting open house & launch party Friday

   RICHMOND - Bridge Storage and ArtSpace on Maine Avenue will hold an open house and launch party Friday from 5- 9 p.m.
     The public is invited to the free event.
     The open house and party is to celebrate opening of some newly completed co-working facilities at the site.
     Attendees will be able to tour the new facilities, enjoy art exhibitions and meet with local arts and cultural organizations.
     There will be food and drink served, some short films shown and performances by a Taiko drumming group, among other events.
     For an online peek at the facility, visit the Bridge Storage site here: BRIDGE STORAGE.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Richmond council candidates' forum Monday at East Brother Beer Company

   RICHMOND - The East Brother Beer Company at 1001 Canal Boulevard will host a candidates' forum tonight for those seeking election to Richmond City Council in the November election.
     The East Brother event runs from 6-8 p.m. and is open to the public.
     A spokesman for the company said last week that nine of the 13 candidates running for three council seats have said they will attend.
     The Curbside Kitchen food truck will be selling food. Beer will be available in the company's tap room where the event will take place.
     The event is co-sponsored by the Point Richmond Neighborhood Council and the Point Richmond Business Association.
     Those groups have solicited questions for the candidates from members of the public that will be asked during a presentation.
The candidates for city council include:
Nat Bates
Diego Garcia
Carole Johnson
Demnlus Johnson
Eduardo Martinez
Vinay Pimple
Virginia Ramirez
Ada Recinos
Keith Rivers
Jim Rogers
David Schoenthal
Eleanor Thompson
Cesar Zepeda
The candidates for Richmond Mayor are Tom Butt and Melvin Willis.