Dear Members of the Oakland Parks and Recreation Commission,
Our Vision for an expanded downtown Recreation Center
Lincoln Square Park is the city’s busiest recreation center and park, with over 1,500 unique visitors each day, all day long. It is the only public recreation center in Downtown and serves residents of all ages, incomes and races from across the city and beyond. The adjacent bus stop at Harrison and 11th is one of the busiest in the system and provides much needed indoor and outdoor play areas for neighboring schools.
Friends of Lincoln Square Park (FLSP) is a coalition of community leaders and volunteers including representatives from the Oakland Parks and Recreation Foundation, the Chinatown Chamber of Commerce, local churches, family associations, the Wa Sung Community Service Club and other community organizations. We are working with the recreation center staff and the City to advocate, plan and fund the design and construction of an expanded and modernized recreation center that will be the center of Chinatown.
The Lincoln Square Park Recreation Center (LSPRC) is 40 years old and in dire need of expansion and improvement. The current building is over capacity, as activities fill every room at nearly all hours. Pressure for more space is mounting as new residents move into the 5,000+ new apartments in Downtown leasing over the next year. A recent architectural analysis concluded that the facility floor area needs to be doubled just to meet existing demand.
Our shared vision is a new three story recreation center with an indoor basketball gym, multipurpose and class rooms, space that can be indoor/outdoor, and a relocated Chinatown Hall of Pioneers as a central gathering space. This new building will have the space to host multiple simultaneous activities that bring together different generations and longtime and new Oaklanders.
Downtown Specific Plan
The Downtown Specific Plan lays out out the City’s vision and priorities for the future of Downtown Oakland. We have been closely following the plan as it has progressed for over two years and have been actively engaged in the process, participating in the Community Advisory Group and attending many workshops and meetings to help shape the collective vision. Unfortunately, the recreation center and future recreation are not included in the report and future vision. We need your help to fix this.
We are writing to urge you to ask the City to make the following modifications to the current draft Downtown Specific Plan:
Thank you for taking the time to read through the draft plan and advocate on behalf of Oakland’s parks. By advocating for these priorities, you can help make sure that downtown Oakland is a place where everyone belongs. Again we urge you to speak up as a Commission and submit public comments in writing to the City of Oakland as soon a possible.
Please contact Tiffany Eng, Co-Chair of our Steering Committee firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to discuss these comments in depth. Our detailed notes for the City of Oakland is attached for your reference.
Friends of Lincoln Square Park Steering Committee (Organizations for reference only)
Tiffany Eng, Family Friendly Oakland
Ener Chiu, Associate Director of Real Estate, East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation
Kathy Dwyer, Board Member, Oakland Parks and Recreation
Rick DiSilva, LOH Realty Oakland Chamber of Commerce
Karen Dea, Oakland Parks and Recreation Foundation Board Member
Tommy Wong, Chinatown Improvement Initiative
Peggy Woon, Wa Sung Community Service Club
Ellen Cavanagh, Oakland Parks and Recreation Foundation Board Member
City of Oakland: email@example.com
CM. Nikki Bas: firstname.lastname@example.org