Client: 1431 Jefferson Street LLC / City of Oakland
Scope: Environmental Analysis - CEQA Documenation
The 1431 Jefferson Street Marriott Hotel Project involves the removal of a 1-story convenience store at the corner of Jefferson and 14th Street and construction of an 18-story 189 foot tall hotel providing a total of 276 guest rooms, 1,600 square feet of ground-floor retail uses and off-street parking for 98 cars. Two types of guest rooms would be offered, including 143 Residence Inn (“RI”) type rooms on the lower floors (consisting of with a mix of studio and 1-bedroom apartments designed and intended for stays of up to 30 days, and 133 hotel rooms consistent with Marriott’s “AC” hotel room concept, intended for shorter stays and with a higher level of finishes and amenities.
Nathaniel Taylor, Lamphier-Gregory Senior Planner, was the Project Manager, tasked with preparing the environmental document. The legally solid CEQA document involved use of exemptions and streamlining provisions as provided in CEQA Guidelines §15332 (infill development), §15183 and §15183.3, and relied upon the fact that impacts of the project were already addressed in a previously certified EIR (i.e., the Central District Urban Renewal Plan). The CEQA analysis and conclusions were supported by technical studies in regards to traffic, air quality, noise, historic resources, shadows and wind.
An interesting issue arose when it was learned that shadows from the proposed hotel would partially block sunlight from rooftop solar collectors on an adjacent building and thereby reduce the amount of electrical power it could generate. This was determined to not be an environmental impact under the City’s criteria. Other issues included concerns from nearby coffee shops and merchants regarding constriction noise and traffic.
The Project was approved by a unanimous vote of the Oakland Planning Commission after a long hearing in which the neighbors’ concerns were addressed.