UPDATE: Construction is scheduled to begin June 8 and be complete by November. Portions of the park will be closed during this time. Please do not enter work areas, and please keep dogs on leash. Thank you!
Download: Albany Shoreline Construction Information Flyer
The District’s board voted unanimously Tuesday, April 21 to approve the first phase of the project, which is slated to begin in June and be complete by December. The improvements are part of the McLaughlin Eastshore State Park General Plan.
“We’re delighted to make these improvements at this well-loved park,” said Board President and Ward 1 representative Whitney Dotson. “This will help ensure that the Albany Beach area will be a welcoming refuge for visitors and wildlife alike for generations to come.”
(The Park District operates McLaughlin Eastshore State Park on behalf of California State Parks. The “Bulb” and center of the “Neck” – the properties north of McLaughlin at the foot of Buchanan Street – is owned by the City of Albany and not part of this renovation plan.)
The first phase of the project will focus on a portion of the Neck owned by the Park District, the southern edge along the shoreline. The $4.1 million undertaking will include landscaping and re-surfacing of about 2,000 feet of the Bay Trail, making it more accessible for people with disabilities, and will also include extensive restoration of the shoreline.
The Neck is part of the former Albany landfill, and as a result, has been especially vulnerable to erosion. The District’s project includes removal of the old landfill debris and adding rocks, sand and other natural features to keep the shoreline intact.
The District also plans to add bird-roosting islands, oyster shell reefs and tide-pools to create habitat for native species. Pelicans, ducks and cormorants are among the birds that visit the Neck area.
Phases II and III include extension of the Bay Trail between Buchanan and Gilman streets west of Golden Gate Fields, dune and wetland restoration at Albany Beach, restrooms, parking and other improvements. The entire project is expected to cost $12.4 million, and will be funded by Measure CC, Measure WW, the Coastal Conservancy, the Alameda County Transportation Commission and other sources.
Measure CC, passed in 2004, is a $12-per-year parcel tax in western Alameda and Contra Costa counties that funds critical infrastructure improvements and fire hazard reduction at some of the District’s oldest and most well-used parks.
Measure WW is a $500 million bond in Alameda and Contra Costa counties that funds park acquisitions and capital improvements, as well as local park and recreation projects. It passed in 2008.
South Neck Shoreline Erosion
The East Bay Regional Park District is a system of beautiful public parks and trails in Alameda and Contra Costa counties east of San Francisco Bay, established in 1934. The system comprises 119,000 acres in 65 parks including over 1,250 miles of trails for hiking, biking, horseback riding and nature learning.