[ex Naval Air Station Alameda]
NAS Alameda closed April 25, 1997, and the NADEP closed September 30, 1996. Until 1997, Alameda Point was known as Naval Air Station (NAS) Alameda. It was a federal facility, with approximately 60 military tenant commands for a combined military/civilian work force of over 18,000 personnel. In 1997 the base closed, and the Navy began turning the property over to the City of Alameda.
Four carriers were tied up at NAS Alameda in November 1945 as a part of Operation Magic Carpet -- SARATOGA (CV-3), ENTERPRISE (CV-6), HORNET (CV-12) and SAN JACINTO (CVL-30). The Navy has donated the HORNET to the Aircraft Carrier HORNET Foundation for use as a museum. She is currently moored at ex-NAS Alameda (now Alameda Point) pier 3, and is open to the public for tours.
The NAS at Alameda contained 2,479 acres of property owned by the U.S. Navy: 1,521 acres upland, and 958 acres of submerged tideland in San Francisco Bay. In addition, 155 acres are leased from the City of Alameda. Naval Air Station Alameda provided support services to Naval aviation facilities. Berthing space at two piers accommodated aircraft carriers, and ship maintenance was also accomplished at Alameda. The Naval Air Rework Facility Alameda allowed for repair and revamping of Navy jet and turboprop aircraft.
The airfield has two crossed US-equipped runways: one 8,000 feet in length, 200 feet in width; the other 7,200 feet long, 200 feet wide. Two helicopter landing areas are provided. The airfield' at Alameda NAS includes 469,700 square yards of aircraft parking apron and seven aircraft maintenance hangars. There is an air traffic control tower on site.
The community adamantly opposed the threatened closure of NAS Alameda in 1993. However, following the announcement of the closure, the City established a base conversion office and formed the Alameda Base Reuse Advisory Group (BRAG) to provide a forum for community input to the base reuse planning process. Also, in 1993, Congressman Ron Dellums formed the East Bay Conversion and Reinvestment Commission (EBCRC) to encourage regional input into the conversion process and to undertake a one-year pilot project outlining how a community should effectively close a base. In April 1994, the City and County of Alameda signed a Joint Powers Agreement (JPA), and established the Alameda Reuse and Redevelopment Authority (ARRA). The ARRA was recognized by DoD as the responsible entity for submitting and completing the Community Reuse Plan for NAS Alameda.
On April 16, 1997, the U.S. Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration (MARAD) and the Alameda Reuse and Redevelopment Authority (ARRA) signed a five-year services agreement for port services and for the use of three piers at the former Alameda Naval Air Station. MARAD will give berth to 11 ships of its Ready Reserve fleet at Piers 1, 2, and 3. MARAD's Ready Reserve ships are available to transport equipment, supplies and vehicles for military-support operations worldwide. They are manned 24 hours a day, and each ship has a standing/sitting crew of 8-10. ARRA has contracted with Trident-3M Services, a start-up local company comprised of former military and civilian workers, to provide all the necessary port services to the MARAD ships. Trident maintains the piers and the utility connections and will provide safety services such as spill response and channel surveys. The City of Alameda provides police and fire protection. MARAD will purchase its utility services directly from utility providers.
Naval Air Station (NAS) Alameda is located on the western end of Alameda Island, in Alameda and San Francisco counties, California. Alameda Island lies along the eastern side of the San Francisco Bay, adjacent to the city of Oakland. The base, rectangular in shape, is approximately 2 miles long and 1 mile wide, and occupies 2,634 acres of land. Approximately 1,526 acres of NAS Alameda are land and 1,108 acres are bay.
Most of the base is within the city limits of Alameda. However, the dumpsite west of the airstrips pokes out into San Francisco Bay and, therefore, slightly into the City and County of San Francisco. The (former) Naval Air Station Alameda (NAS) is the geographic center of the San Francisco Bay Area and occupies the western one-third of the island of Alameda. Within the Station's four square miles are a major airfield, deepwater port, aircraft and ship maintenance facilities, 1,513 units of family housing and barracks-type housing, industrial, retail, warehouse and recreational facilities.
The area encompassed by NAS Alameda was historically a combination of submerged lands, tideland, and dry land. The site is relatively flat, with elevations ranging from sea level to 30 feet above sea level. The property occupies the flattest portion of Alameda, reflecting its origins as diked bay lands and mud flats. Much of the land now occupied by NAS Alameda was once covered by the waters of San Francisco Bay or was tidal flats. Much of the base was gradually filled using hydraulically placed dredge spoils from the surrounding San Francisco Bay, the Seaplane Lagoon at NAS Alameda, and the Oakland Channel. The first documented filling of tidal and submerged land began sometime during the 1890s. By 1927, the northern part of what later became NAS Alameda had been filled, chiefly with dredge materials from US Army Corps of Engineers (COE) projects associated with the Oakland Harbor and other harbors throughout the East Bay. Prior to 1930, at least two large industrial sites, a borax processing plant and an oil refinery, were located on the island near what is now the eastern end of NAS Alameda. The refinery was located at the site of the present-day Site 13.
The filled land was partially occupied by the Alameda Airport, a City-owned facility, and Benton Field, a minor US Army Air Corps facility. The U.S. Army acquired the NAS Alameda site from the city of Alameda in 1930 and began construction activities in 1931. The Navy acquired title to the land from the Army in 1936 and began building the air station in response to the military buildup in Europe prior to World War II. After the 1941 entry of the United States into the war, more land was acquired adjacent to the air station. Following the end of the war, NAS Alameda returned to its original primary mission of providing facilities and support for fleet aviation activities.
Alameda is located at the geographic center of the San Francisco Bay Area. It consists of a main island just offshore from Oakland and directly across the bay from San Francisco, plus the tip of a peninsula attached to the mainland near Oakland Airport, Coast Guard Island and Ballena Isle. Alameda is accessed by four bridges, two tunnels, two ferr y terminals to San Francisco, and a water taxi to Oakland. The main island is characterized by charming neighborhoods of Victorian architecture, two historic downtowns, and marinas. In addition, in the late 1980s, the 205-acre Marina Village mixed-use project was successfully developed with 1.1 million square feet of office space, a 125,000 square foot retail shopping center, 178 townhomes, and a marina. The peninsula portion of the city, named "Bay Farm Island," is home to more recent residential development, the Harbor Bay Business Park, and a very popular 36-hole municipal golf complex.
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