For Immediate Release
June 15, 2005
Oakland, Calif. (June 15, 2005) - Port of Oakland, City of Oakland and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters joined forces to develop a 5-month agreement that will temporarily solve a shortage of space for truckers to park. In May, the Port of Oakland notified independent owner-operators and small trucking companies who had been using port land under temporary 30-day agreements that they would have to relocate to allow for construction.
The Port of Oakland has other port-area land that is currently being utilized for trucking-related purposes, but most of this area is already under lease to other tenants. Oakland City Council President Ignacio De La Fuente served as a key player in bringing everyone together to come up with the solution. Chuck Mack representing the Teamsters worked with the Port and the City to assist in finding a feasible option that was agreeable to all parties.
“The Port has been working collaboratively with the City and the Teamsters. We’re very pleased that together we’ve been able to develop a solution that will provide a temporary location for the truckers,” said Port of Oakland Executive Director Jerry Bridges. Oakland City Councilmember Nancy Nadel, who represents the West Oakland Community, was also instrumental in the efforts that moved toward resolution on this issue.
The 5-month arrangement means that truckers, who are now parking on port property that is scheduled for construction, will have an area near the Port to use temporarily for their needs through November 2005. In order to make this happen, the Port will lease a portion of land in the former Oakland Army Base area and then sublease it to a trucking operator that will manage the space for truck parking.
“The agreement will give the truckers some relief, while at the same time allow us (Port of Oakland) to proceed with our critical development activities,” stated Port Executive Director Jerry Bridges. “We’ve been working over the last five years to expand and improve our maritime facilities in order to handle the continuing growth in international trade,” Bridges added.
“The temporary agreement is a good and workable solution. The land we’re making available to the truckers will keep them close to the port and meet their needs,” commented Oakland City Council President Ignacio De La Fuente. “Meanwhile it’s extremely important to Oakland and the region that the Port moves forward with its construction plans. As the Port of Oakland maritime business grows, the City and region benefit through increased revenues, taxes and jobs,” said De La Fuente.
During construction of Vision 2000, the Port made portions of its property available to some of the independent owner-operators and trucking companies. This was a temporary month-to-month arrangement and it was understood early on that it would mean having to vacate the property once the construction activity moved to their particular sites.
“We understand that this created concerns for these trucking companies and operators and we’ve been working hard to come up with some potential solutions,” said Port Executive Director Jerry Bridges. “We’ve been able to work out a temporary fix that keeps the trucking activities close to the Port,” said Bridges.
As the redevelopment of the Oakland seaport moves forward, there will continue to be growing pains not only for truckers, but for the marine terminal operators and other port users.
“We’ve seen an 18% increase in the volume of goods moving through the Oakland seaport when we compare the first four months of 2005 with last year’s figures,” remarked the Port’s Director of Maritime Wilson Lacy. “The ongoing construction improvements of our existing facilities at the seaport must continue in order to keep our projects on schedule. We can’t afford to get behind,” Lacy added.
Chuck Mack, Port Division Director for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters stated, “I’m gratified that some relief for truckers has been provided and that the City recognizes the needs of Port area truckers.”
The U.S. Army conveyed the Oakland Army Base (OAB) to the Oakland Base Reuse Authority (OBRA) in August 2003. The Port of Oakland will be receiving its portion of additional OAB acreage for re-use from OBRA as early as August 2006. The Port is committed to providing maritime support services on Port land, once the Oakland Army Base land transfer is complete (This may include warehousing, container storage, container repair, truck parking and/or other maritime support facilities).
There are two major actions that have to be taken to adopt the 5-month agreement – formal approval from the Oakland Base Reuse Authority Board and Oakland’s Board of Port Commissioners. The next scheduled meeting for OBRA’s board is Tuesday, June 21st. The Port Board of Commissioners also has its regularly scheduled meeting the same date. The temporary relief for the truckers will provide an opportunity to explore every possible option for a longer term solution.
Established in 1927 as an independent department of the City of Oakland, the Port of Oakland spans 19 miles of waterfront, oversees more than 900 acres of maritime terminal facilities, and owns and operates one of the fastest-growing airports in the nation, Oakland International Airport.
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