Frequently Asked Questions

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What is the final vision of the Oak Knoll neighborhood?

When completed, Oak Knoll will be a pedestrian-friendly, high-quality community oriented around a restored creek. Situated in Oakland’s southern foothills, abundant pathways and open space will connect family-oriented neighborhood enclaves. The community will include features such as shops, restaurants and public meeting spaces to allow neighbors to interact with each other. Oak Knoll will have the feel and character of neighborhoods such as Piedmont, Montclair and Claremont with a laid-back small-town atmosphere.

How many homes will be built on the site?

Currently, Oak Knoll will consist of a total 935 single-family and town homes although this could change slightly based on final approvals.

Will houses be built on the prominent ridge top along Keller Avenue?

Only in a very small section and not on the highest point. Oak Knoll will include homes on the ridge, but there will be no homes on the knoll itself. The majority of the ridge will be preserved as open space for passive viewing opportunities, walking and hiking.

Will Oak Knoll feature any parks or trails to make the community walkable and pedestrian friendly? Will trails link to East Bay Regional trails?

Yes, the project is being designed with a walking, hiking and biking trail system that traverses the entire site and connects to the East Bay Regional Parks system. Along that system will be pocket parks, the community center, village center and other features.

What will be included in the Oak Knoll community center?

The Oak Knoll community center will be home to the home owners association (HOA) for the project but will also be available for events for residents and the general public. The center is being designed to be the gathering spot of the community and could be used for events such as birthday parties, weddings and social gatherings. We are currently analyzing the other features that would potentially serve for recreation and entertainment.

Will there be more than one Home Owners Association at Oak Knoll?

We anticipate that there will be one HOA to help maintain Oak Knoll but it is possible that some home builders may want to create their own HOAs for individual residential developments.

What will be included in the Oak Knoll village center?

The village center will be designed as a lifestyle center and will include approximately 72,000 square feet of retail space that reflects the desires of the local community. The center will provide for daily support needs such as a grocery store, specialty shops and restaurants that are preferred by the local surrounding community.

How will Oak Knoll’s housing options accommodate people in all stages of life?

The 187-acre Oak Knoll development will feature a variety of home styles and sizes including estate homes, single family homes and townhomes. The homes will have a range of pricing to provide residents at all stages of life the ability to move up during the different stages of their lives.

Will the plan created by SunCal in conjunction with the community be the final plan approved by the City?

Working with the general community, interest groups and other stakeholders, SunCal has submitted a plan that we are requesting the City to approve.

How can the surrounding community support the current plan as it exists?

SunCal welcomes the written and vocal support of the surrounding community to support the current plan. To show support for Oak Knoll and SunCal’s plan, please consider signing a letter or calling your councilmember.

Will the Oak Knoll development be required to have market rate housing?

We are proposing market-rate residences for sale to the public and we are working with public agencies to address affordability for workforce housing such as police, fire, teachers and nurses.

What can be done about receiving information from opponents of the Oak Knoll project?

If you begin to receive or have already received information from advocates against our project, please let us know so we can handle it accordingly. Our email is contact@OakKnollCommunity.com.

What is SunCal doing about the expected increase in traffic in the Oak Knoll Community area?

SunCal will address the required traffic improvements as they are identified in the entitlement process. We will be constructing improvements within the community and in the surrounding area which will include a traffic signal, intersection upgrades, new paving, curbs and gutters. These improvements will be constructed during the project development or funded by fees paid to the City for implementation at an appropriate future time. The specific improvements are being studied in the traffic report that is part of the EIR process and will be available to the public upon the completion of the Draft EIR.

What effort is SunCal making to control the noise increase during construction?

New development is required through the entitlement process to address potential noise with permanent and temporary measures depending upon the source of the noise. We will make every reasonable effort to minimize noise during the construction process. In addition, existing City ordinances limit the days and times that construction may take place.

Why can’t SunCal preserve Club Knoll in its current state?

Club Knoll is badly deteriorated from years of vandalism and neglect, and as a result of two studies we commissioned, we believed it was beyond rehabilitating and of limited historic value. However, at the urging of the City of Oakland Planning Department and Oakland Heritage Alliance, we’re protecting it from benign neglect and now proposing to possibly save it. We’ve implemented measures to protect the Club’s roof from further damage as the plans for the new community make their way through the entitlement and EIR process.

We decided to take another look at the Club after our conversations with the City and OHA, and we‘re carefully reviewing the structure’s condition and studying ways to possibly preserve it. We now believe that it could be integrated into Oak Knoll so that it might one day return to service as a community center.

When will construction begin?

We are hopeful that the entitlement process and construction permitting process will be completed and therefore enable construction to begin in the third quarter of 2017.

Will there be new schools, fire stations and police sub stations built nearby to accommodate the new population of residents?

Initial studies currently show that Oak Knoll will not be required to include a school, fire station or police sub-station. However, during the entitlement process, we will coordinate through the City for the appropriate provision of these services and facilities.

What effort is SunCal making to ensure the life quality of current homeowners in the Oak Knoll area will not be diminished?

Environmental studies and analysis are underway to confirm that our design will be consistent with a high quality of life in the Oak Knoll community. To this end, SunCal holds regular project update meetings with HOA’s in the surrounding community and addresses questions and concerns. A monthly newsletter about the project is also distributed.

Will homes in the Oak Knoll development be equipped with solar panels?

We are a community developer and install the utilities, streets and amenities; and create the neighborhoods for future homebuilders. Within the entitlement documents are provisions to enable homebuilders to install solar panels or other alternative energy sources. Alternative energy is a priority and a serious consideration, and this topic will be discussed with the homebuilders selected for Oak Knoll. Also, under state laws pertaining to solar energy, a homeowner is able to install solar panels on his or her residence.

Can nearby residents walk and hike on the undeveloped Oak Knoll property?

For safety and security reasons, the Oak Knoll property is not currently open to surrounding residents and other persons.

Why doesn’t the proposed planting palette for Oak Knoll include more redwoods?

Coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) forests are generally restricted to a narrow band along the coast of California from just north of the Oregon border south to Monterey. The redwood forests of nearby Redwood Regional Park and Joaquin Miller Park are relative outliers of the otherwise coastal distribution that are made possible only by a unique combination of topography and weather patterns. Coastal fog blows in to the East Bay through the Golden Gate and eventually settles in topographic bowls or basins. The redwood forests of the East Bay are typically restricted to these fog-drenched bowls or basins as well as north-facing slopes that stay cooler and moister than the surrounding oak woodlands, scrublands and grasslands. The majority of the Oak Knoll site has a southwest-facing aspect that makes it warmer and drier than the nearby redwood forests to the north. Other tree species such as coast live oak (Quercus agrifolia) are more tolerant of the dry, warm conditions found on the site and would not need supplemental irrigation following initial establishment. In addition, redwood trees are known for their very shallow root system, which increases their risk of falling and can create a hazard in urban areas. Due to their ability to quickly reach large sizes with supplemental irrigation, this is of particular concern within the planned development.

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