When Cleveland Mitchell first learned in 2011 that Oakland’s McCullum Youth Court was losing funding and on the verge of closing its doors, he could hardly contain his disappointment. Having been involved with the court for years, first in 2005 as a 13-year-old juvenile delinquent and then throughout high school as a volunteer staff member, Mitchell had personally witnessed the nonprofit diversion program help hundreds of kids in Alameda County. In 2012, when the youth court officially shut down, Mitchell was totally dismayed and flabbergasted that one of Oakland’s most prominent youth diversion programs could have been allowed to deteriorate. “I couldn’t believe it was over,” Mitchell says. “I thought it was something that deserved to be more praised and more wanted than it was.”
When people talk about rent problems in the Bay Area, they’re usually referring to San Francisco and its recent convulsions of gentrification. But there’s another crisis brewing in the East Bay that has gone largely undetected.
These days, new pro sports venues have to do more than just house the team. They have to find other ways to pay for construction without public subsidies. Resistance to bad deals, like the one that returned the Raiders to Oakland, has completely rewritten the rules of stadium and arena construction. That’s great for taxpayers, but bad for East Bay sports fans.
Bitter land disputes aren’t exactly rare in Alameda. But even by local standards, the struggle for 4 acres of land near Robert W. Crown Memorial State Beach has become exceptionally intense.
In April, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission approved $8.7 million to expand Bay Area Bike Share to the East Bay in Oakland, Berkeley, and Emeryville. But bike-loving Alameda was left out. Should we be mad?
“I want Alameda to become one of America’s top bicycle-friendly cities."