On March 4, 2005, Natural Heritage Institute - attorneys representing the Millsmont Homeowners Association - issued a response to the City's Staff Report submitted to the Public Works Committee on January 25, 2005.
..... MHA is not interested in stopping the Leona Quarry Project. Our interests lie in preventing further degradation to and restoring the form and function of Chimes Creek. This degradation is the result of the City’s permitting decisions to permanently route flows to Chimes Creek in excess of its natural capacity. The streambed in the vicinity of the 3000 block of Delmont Avenue has dropped ten feet or more in the past decade. Fences crossing the channel are now stranded ten feet or more above the streambed and serve as monuments to the former depth of the streambed. The rate of degradation greatly accelerated after the Ridgemont development was constructed in the 1980s. The Leona Quarry Project will contribute to this degradation. MHA members are losing an essential feature of their property as a result of upstream development. It is fundamentally inequitable to place the indirect costs of upstream development on downstream property owners.
For full text of this letter, go to Correspondence/NHI letter dated March 4, 2005.
After 9 months of non-compliance, the City is finally enforcing the mitigation requirements for the Alameda Whipsnake at Leona Quarry. Go to Alameda Whipsnake for more details, including a chronology of how the City's Project Planner took care of the Whipsnake issue in the Draft EIR back in 2001-2002.
February 21, Presidents Day: Half of the site runoff, including stormwater from Ridgemont, was diverted away from the detention pond and plugged directly into the 39" pipe connecting to the City storm drains. Residents along Chimes Creek reported massive water flow and additional loss of property. At the bottom of Oakdale, the homeowner reported a 6-foot geyser spewing raw sewage from the manhole during an SSO (Sanitary Sewer Overflow) event that lasted "for hours." City Engineers have so far not denied that they approved this temporary diversion to help alleviate the pressure on the overworked filtration system.
On February 8, City Engineer Fuad Sweiss sent out an email that declared "the restoration of the quarry site would reduce peak discharge and total runoff from the site even with the construction of the residential units." We requested further clarification, but one month has passed without a response or explanation on how it would be possible to reduce the total runoff from the site after 70 percent of the permeable surface is paved over. See Correspondence to follow our intriguing dialogue with the experts.
- Planning Commission approves Leona Quarry project
- City settles with Burkhalter Neighbors group
- Apr 1, 2004: Grading begins at Quarry
- Apr 2, 2004: Residents complain of silt and muddy water in the creek
- May 27, 2004: City "discovers" source of pollution
- Aug 5, 6, 7, 2004: City fines Desilva Gates for violation
- Aug 2004: Water main break causes mudslide and erosion on site
- Sep 19, 2004: Early rain reveals flaws in erosion control and BMPs
- Oct 20, 2004: First rain of rainy season washes away much of hydroseed and other erosion control measures
- Oct 26, 2004: Oakland City Council Public Works Committee considers approval of Final Map and wet weather grading permit. The Committee recommends review at City Council Meeting.
- Nov 2, 2004: SF Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board issues Notice of Non Compliance to DeSilva Gates.
- Nov 11, 2004: Detention pond is topping out after 2 hours of rain. Filtration tanks are unable to keep up with the inflow . Dirty water is discharged from the temporary basin and the filtration tank.
- Nov 16, 2004: City Council returns Agenda item for further review by Public Works Committee
- Dec 14, 2004: Staff is unable to produce required documents and a response to the letter from the Natural Heritage Institute, attorneys representing the Millsmont Homeowners Association. Item was continued for further discussion at the next Public Works Committee meeting on Jan 25, 2005.
- Jan 25, 2005: Public Works Committee meeting. Staff submits report. Inconsistencies and missing documents are noted. Staff Report is forwarded to City Council with the understanding that staff will provide missing peer review documents and answers at that time.
- Feb 1, 2005: Staff report is accepted by City Council.
- Feb 10, 2005: Sewer repair meeting is held for the Millsmont community. None of the residents along Oakdale were notified of the meeting. Two sewer mains running alongside Chimes Creek are scheduled for replacement in the spring of 2006. Staff acknowledges this work is subject to Category 4 Creek Protection Permit.
- Feb 21, 2005: Half of the site runoff, including stormwater from Ridgemont, was diverted away from the detention pond and plugged directly into the 39" pipe connecting to the City storm drains. Residents along Chimes Creek reported massive water flow and additional loss of property. One resident reported that the sewer manhole in his backyard gushed out raw sewage "for hours." City Engineers have so far not denied that they approved this temporary diversion to help alleviate the pressure on the overworked filtration system.