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Richmond makes the short list

Article by Suzanne Bohan, Contra Costa Times,
Contributions by staff writer Robert Jordan. Posted: 05/09/2011 04:07:44 PM PDT

Berkeley lab selects six Bay Area sites as finalists for second campus

Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory on Monday revealed six East Bay sites on the short list for the lab’s second campus, which it plans to open in mid-2016.

Nearly 20 percent of the lab’s 4,200 employees work at offices in Oakland, Emeryville, Walnut Creek and the Berkeley flatlands, because there’s no room for them at the original, cramped Berkeley hills facility. These 800 off-site workers would move into the new 2 million square-foot facility, which the lab says will promote collaboration among scientists and UC students, and save costs.

The finalists for the new lab campus are:

Alameda Point in Alameda;
Berkeley Aquatic Park West in West Berkeley;
Brooklyn Basin in Oakland;
Emeryville/Berkeley, on property occupied by the Berkeley Lab;
Golden Gate Fields, spanning Berkeley and Albany;
Richmond Field Station, a site owned by UC, which runs the Berkeley Lab.

Landowners in more than 20 East Bay cities vied for the second campus when the lab solicited proposals earlier this year.

“We had tremendous response to our call for qualifications,” said Paul Alivisatos, the lab’s director. He praised “the large number of visionary responses created by so many communities in the East Bay.”

In narrowing down the list, the lab said it looked for a location less
than 25 minutes from the original campus, room to accommodate growth, easy access to public transportation and other amenities. It expects to select the new campus site in November.

The six sites chosen for final consideration all are west of the Berkeley hills. Among the applications left off the short list was one from SunCal, which proposed a site in Dublin.

“Obviously we are disappointed,” said Joe Guerra, land acquisition and entitlements manager for SunCal. “We thought we and the city of Dublin had a strong proposal, and I am guessing that it had to do with the location.”

SunCal had proposed to build the new campus on roughly 80 of the 180 acres of land it acquired from the Army in April. The Southern California-based company agreed to the land swap with the Army in exchange for $80 million in new facilities and upgraded infrastructure at the base, which is less than a mile from the Dublin-Pleasanton BART station.

See original article here.

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