The APA California Northern Section Sustainability Committee and the APA Sustainable Community Division’s Champion Program hosted Sustainable Neighborhood Sustainability Committee Pre-conference MeetUp at Swans Market in Old Oakland on Friday, October 2, 2015. About 30 members enjoyed complimentary wine and hors d’oeuvres, toured the adjacent C0-housing project (one of the oldest in the Nation) with the project sponsor, two residents, and the lead planner, and afterwards enjoyed dinner at The Cock & Her Farmer in Swan’s market. a Summary and the event invitation follow below.
Hors D’oeuvres and dinner were hosted in Swan’s Market courtesy of Romney Steele, Owner, The Cook and Her Farmer (THANK YOU Romney!). Romney is a chef, small business owner, cookbook author, food writer, and community builder. She opened her latest Project, the Cook and Her Farmer in Swan’s Market with Steven Day a year ago last summer and provided insights about the business side of this successful urban regeneration project.
For the Co-housing tour, we were fortunate to hear insights about this 15-year old urban regeneration and innovative land use project from some of the key players.
- Josh Simon, Executive Director EBALDC (East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation)
- Neil Planchon and Michael Coleman, Swan’s Market Cohousing Residents
- Patrick Lane, Redevelopment Manager with the City of Oakland’s Economic & Workforce Development Department, Project Implementation Division
Josh has worked with East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation for 14 of the last 21 years as both Executive Director, and Director of Real Estate. His career has been dedicated to working with coalitions of organizations to develop and maintain healthy vibrant neighborhoods and the creation of “Community Hubs” such as Swan’s Market. Josh brings both the technical expertise to develop affordable housing and mixed use community facilities, as well as the clear sighted leadership necessary for the best neighborhood driven outcomes. Neil has been working actively involved with the Old Oakland Neighborhood Association for 13 years, and with the Cohousing Association of the US for the past 8 years, a non profit whose mission is to promote the awareness and development of cohousing and to provide sustenance to existing cohousing communities in the United States. For the past 11 years, Patrick has worked collaboratively on any number of the City of Oakland redevelopment projects including Swan’s Market. He was also formerly a Manager in the City of Oakland Redevelopment Agency.
The insights into this project provided by the core team were eye-opening in terms of what it takes to make the initial idea work and then keep it working, not the least of which is stakeholder commitment and the occasional serendipitous happenings. Neil provided an invaluable book as a resource, Cohousing–A contemporary Approach to Housing Ourselves (just published 2nd edition).
A big thanks to Kate Howe, a planner with VIA Architecture, and Director of the San Francisco Office, who took the concept, found the event location, lined up the tour guides, organized the hosting at The Cock & Her Farmer, signed in attendees, and generally made this event a success. Also, a big thanks to Katja Irvin and Rae Smith, who worked with Kate to make this event happen.
What–Social/Tour/Dinner: Meet colleagues and explore a redevelopment success over wine/ beer, a tour of Swan’s Market & Co-housing, Old Oakland and dinner afterwards at The Cook and Her Farmer in Swan’s Market. Light drink and snack provided, additional food and drink available for purchase.
Explore this historic 1916 produce market adapted for small restaurant kiosks as well as a co-housing project. Tour guides will discuss history, redevelopment and co-housing (1 CM Credit Pending).
When: Friday, October 2nd, 5:30 – 8:30 pm:
- 5:30-6:15: meet-up, soft start, complimentary wine/snack (in Swan’s Market)
- 6:15-6:30: talk (in Swan’s Market)
- 6:30-7:30: tour (market & co-housing: Guides from EBALDC & Oakland Planning)
- 7:30-8:30: dinner at The Cook and Her Farmer or other venues at Swan’s Market.
Where: Swan’s Market, 907 Washington St (enter from 9th Street between Clay & Washington), Old Oakland (4 blocks from 12th St. BART). Map (click). Enter off 9th Street (between Clay & Washington) through glass doors to a few “APA”-marked tables in the center of the room.
Please REGISTER at Eventbrite to make logistics easier.
[Post prepared by Scott T. Edmondson, AICP, founder/past co-director and Research Program Lead of the Northern Section’s Sustainability Committee, one of the APA Sustainable Communities Division’s Sustainability Champions, and a strategic sustainability planner-economist at the SF Planning Department.]