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Oakland A’s Clash With Shipping Industry Over Waterfront Ballpark

The plan to turn an idled terminal into a stadium and mixed-use development has met resistance from maritime groups who say the project could add to supply-chain woes.  

Jack London Square in Oakland is seen from Howard Terminal in 2019. The terminal is being considered for the Oakland Athletics new ballpark.

Jack London Square in Oakland is seen from Howard Terminal in 2019. The terminal is being considered for the Oakland Athletics new ballpark.

Photo by Jane Tyska/MediaNews Group/The Mercury News via Getty Images

The $12 billion plan by the Oakland Athletics to build a baseball stadium and real estate development on a parcel of industrial waterfront owned by the Port of Oakland has faced any number of challenges and opposition since it was proposed in 2018.

These include Oaklanders who are skeptical of the privately funded ballpark’s projected financial benefits and wary of the team’s demand for $855 million in tax breaks to fund infrastructure investments, all while attendance is falling at the team’s longtime home, the aging and increasingly decrepit Oakland Coliseum.

But the stiffest resistance to the idea of building a 35,000-seat stadium at the port comes from major players within Oakland’s maritime industry: Groups representing truckers, ocean carriers, terminal operators, dockworkers and other port-related businesses have argued in three recent lawsuits that the development will cause major impacts to both the surrounding community and port operations, adding to supply-chain woes and dealing a permanent blow to the economic prospects of the third-busiest port in California.