Oakland port's truck mitigation plan advances

Oakland port's truck mitigation plan advances

The Port of Oakland is budgeting $2.35 million over five years for a plan to mitigate growing port-related truck traffic. Photo credit: Shutterstock.com.

As truck traffic increases due to growing container volumes and the redevelopment of the Oakland Army Base into a logistics center, the port’s governing board Thursday adopted a five-year plan to mitigate the impact of harbor-generated traffic on the surrounding community.

The executive director of the Port of Oakland and the Oakland city administrator must now sign off on the West Oakland truck management plan. The plan will stipulate where trucks will be allowed to enter and exit the port, adjacent freeways, and nearby businesses, and will propose strict limits on the parking of trucks in commercial and industrial areas that are close to residential neighborhoods.

Oakland last year handled more than 2.5 million laden and empty TEU, an increase of 5.2 percent over 2017, according to port statistics. In addition to anticipated growth in cargo volumes, the former Oakland Army Base on port property is being redeveloped into a logistics center. Transloading of imports and exports between marine and domestic containers will further increase truck traffic in the harbor area, including the nearby West Oakland residential neighborhood. The Oakland Athletics professional baseball team is also seeking permission to build a 34,000-seat stadium at the port’s Howard Terminal site, which would attract even more vehicle traffic to the neighborhood.

The port is budgeting $2.35 million over five years for the traffic mitigation plan. Additional funds will come from developers of the city’s portion of the army base. “We listened closely to the West Oakland community to understand their concerns about truck traffic. Then we collaborated with them to shape a plan that addresses those concerns,” said Patricia McGowan, city of Oakland planner.

“It’s our responsibility to be a good neighbor in Oakland,” said Andrea Gardner, the port’s environmental planner, who helped to develop the traffic mitigation measures. “With this plan, we’re keeping our promise to minimize the impact of containerized cargo transportation in Oakland,” she said.

Contact Bill Mongelluzzo at bill.mongelluzzo@ihsmarkit.com and follow him on Twitter: @billmongelluzzo.