Community Engagement

In 2005, SunCal purchased the Oak Knoll property and set out to create a development plan in conjunction with community involvement. Desiring to involve the existing community throughout the planning process, SunCal held dozens of meetings with community groups, elected leaders, and neighboring residents and additionally held three large community meetings where they received input from hundreds of residents. Those ideas and suggestions were incorporated into the master plan and have provided valuable guidance. In May 2014, SunCal resumed its involvement with Oak Knoll when it purchased the property from the Lehman Brothers estate. Since then, we have held numerous meetings with the general community, neighbors and homeowner groups, and we are continuing to do so to obtain input and refine the plan.

Some of the Local Groups We’ve Met With:

  • Associated Residents of Sequoyah Heights HOA
  • Oak Knoll Heights Townhomes HOA
  • Shadow Woods HOA
  • Oak Knoll Coalition
  • Sheffield Village HOA
  • Hillcrest Estates Improvement Association
  • Beat 35Y South Hills Neighborhood Crime Prevention Council
  • Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 400
  • Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6435
Support Our Efforts »

May 23, 2016, St. Paschal Baylon Church

As part of our ongoing community outreach, on May 23, 2016, we held a public meeting at St. Paschal Baylon Church that was open to everyone in the Oakland community. We continued to seek input to assist us in refining the vision for the project and also informed everyone present on the latest developments and updates to the Oak Knoll plan. More than 200 residents and representatives of various local organizations and associations were present, and Oakland Councilmember Larry Reid joined with our development team in making the presentations. Presenting from the Oak Knoll development team were SunCal representatives, the manager of Core Security Solutions and planners from the Hart Howerton land-planning and architectural firm. The primary topics covered were Club Knoll, the enhanced property security we recently implemented and the latest refinements to the plan. We also covered how the Public Art Program will be implemented, discussed the community’s design guidelines; presented perspective visualizations to convey the architectural styles and community designs; and updated everyone on the project’s entitlement schedule and anticipated phasing timeline. Following the team’s presentations, a variety of issues about the master plan were discussed during the question and answer period that capped the evening.

April 8, 2015, St. Paschal Baylon Church

Continuing the dialogue with the Oakland community that began in 2006, SunCal held an Oak Knoll public workshop with residents on Wednesday, April 8, 2015, at St. Paschal Baylon Church in Oakland. More than 250 persons came to meet with the Oak Knoll development team and hear about the updated plans for the project. Oakland Councilmember Larry Reid, a strong supporter of the proposed master-planned community that is located in his district, welcomed the attendees and made introductory remarks. SunCal representatives who made presentations to the audience included David Soyka of Public Affairs, who gave an overview of SunCal and its breadth of experience as a leading real estate development company; Pat Keliher of SunCal, who discussed the public outreach activities underway for Oak Knoll; and Sam Veltri of SunCal, who gave a presentation explaining the new plans for the 187-acre community.

Following the presentations, tables were set up around the room where residents could ask questions of the various firms that comprise the Oak Knoll planning and development team: ESA PWA, an environmental science and planning firm, discussed the Environmental Impact Report; renowned land-planning firm Hart-Howerton answered questions about the community's design and planning; a biologist from WRA, an environmental consulting firm, explained the planned restoration of the creek to natural conditions; consulting firm Fehr & Peers Transportation Consultants fielded questions about the project's traffic impacts and how they will be addressed; and SunCal, as the master developer, responded to a variety of questions and comments from residents about the new community.

March 2006, Oakland Zoo Rec Center

As with all SunCal projects, community engagement and neighborhood input is always a priority. In the initial planning phase of this project SunCal hosted several community planning meetings, welcoming neighboring residents, local law enforcement, including the fire department, traffic experts, and design and development consultants from various backgrounds. This extensive process allowed SunCal to receive suggestions from the community on all aspects of the project. Each of the respective experts reviewed the comments and further revised the Oak Knoll plan to ensure these concerns were addressed. The first meeting in March of 2006, was held at the Oakland Zoo Rec Center. It was attended by over 200 people, proving to be extremely successful and an exciting start to a lengthy process.

Mid-2006, Oakland Zoo Rec Center

Later in 2006, SunCal hosted a workshop meeting. This meeting again welcomed a variety of experts and consultants to address issues ranging from traffic to environmental concerns. The meeting was attended by approximately 200 people who discussed design alternatives within the community. Roundtables were set up and representatives from the developer and consultants welcomed feedback and changes to each of the proposed plans. Those that attended discussed traffic, noise, building and design concerns; consultants took note of these issues, discussed possible solutions and addressed them in the final proposed plan. Concerns that were shared by community members and then reviewed included: sustainability, architecture, open space/trails, product building types, Rifle Range Creek and landscape guidelines.

November 2006, Hilton Oakland Airport

In the final public community outreach meeting in 2006, SunCal presented a "Final Preferred Plan" to the residents. This plan was a compilation of all the feedback that was received throughout the year from the nearly 400 residents that attended the outreach meetings. The plan was carefully developed with thoughtful consideration from all consultants and community members to help design a truly unique and special community. Roundtables were set up at this meeting and experts including renowned master planner Peter Calthorpe, the Police Department, Fire Department, local library representatives. Traffic experts answered questions about the final plan. Ultimately, the plan received the enthusiastic support of the neighborhood, residents and local officials. SunCal moved forward with the next steps including the 24-month environmental planning and permit process.

In addition to the broad outreach meetings, SunCal also met with hundreds of community members from rotary clubs to one-on-one meetings in living rooms with surrounding residents. These meetings were held throughout 2006-2007 and further addressed any concerns that neighbors and/or residents might have. SunCal also made a point of reaching out to the broader city of Oakland which included meetings with elected representatives, realtor groups, and airport groups, amongst other community members with valued concerns and suggestions.

Above all else, a top priority of SunCal was to ensure that those interested in the project were well informed, engaged in the process and able to have their questions answered in a timely manner. To meet these needs of the community, SunCal hosted site tours of the property, launched an Oak Knoll website containing the most recent information, compiled a database of interested parties and emailed frequent updates on the progress of the plan. All community members who participated were heard and represented throughout the entire process.

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