Once completed, Gateway Park will stand as one of the Bay Area’s most unique recreational spaces. The planned 170-acre park will provide shoreline access at the foot of the eastern span of the Bay Bridge, offering panoramic views of the region along with connections to various bike and pedestrian routes.
The project took a big step forward today as the East Bay Regional Park District secured an anchor facility for the park, signing a 10-year lease on the massive Bridge Yard Building. Located just south of the toll plaza, the steel frame structure once served as a repair center for the Key System mass transit company, but is now owned by Caltrans. The agency’s District 4 director, Bijan Sartipi, called the recently renovated building a “jewel” at the lease-signing ceremony.
Robert Doyle, the park district’s general manager, outlined plans for the facility, including concessionaires, expanded parking, additional restrooms, and educational programming focused on nature and history. These amenities should attract users of the bridge’s bicycle and pedestrian path, which is part of the San Francisco Bay Trail and connects Treasure Island with Oakland’s bicycle network. As Doyle pointed out, “The trail is right there.”
Completion of Gateway Park will certainly take much more time, but the two agencies will have a lot of help in making it happen. Seven other government entities are partners on the project, and keen interest from stakeholders will surely generate plenty of worthwhile community input as the planning process moves along. The Monitor will continue to cover the project’s development, but those who wish to keep tabs on it directly can visit the Gateway Park website for updates.