Big Oakland redevelopment site lands Amazon-linked real estate buyer

OAKLAND — A one-time glass factory site in Oakland that is headed for the wrecking ball and redevelopment has been grabbed by a veteran real estate company that has proposed a revamp for the property.

Duke Realty is planning a major development of the property in Oakland’s Fruitvale district through the demolition and replacement of the former Owens-Brockway glass manufacturing plant, according to documents on file with city planners.

In a move that further solidifies the Duke Realty plans for the property, the Indiana-based developer has purchased the site, according to documents on file with the Alameda County Clerk-Recorder’s Office. Duke Realty Alameda Ave., the development firm’s affiliate, paid $34.4 million for the 23.9-acre site, documents filed Dec. 29 with the county show.

An industrial, manufacturing, or warehouse building at 3600 Alameda Ave. in Oakland totaling 426,000 square feet, concept.(HPA Architecture) (HPA Architecture)

The developer completed the transaction through an all-cash deal, according to the property records.

Owens-Brockway Glass Container sold the property, located at 3600 Alameda Ave. in Oakland, the public documents show.

“The proposed project is an opportunity to construct a best-in-class modern industrial building representing a significant investment in East Oakland,” Duke Realty stated in documents filed with the city’s planning department.

The building would total 426,000 square feet and include 30,000 square feet of office space, located at the corners of the building, the planning documents state.

“The project will generate benefits for the local community and is a proactive response to the current economic and market demands,” Duke Realty stated in the city filing.

The redevelopment of the property will “provide better public access to the shoreline of the nearby estuary,” the planning documents state.

Duke Realty has also proposed the preservation of a half-acre lot for future retail to enable “the potential development of additional regional-serving retail uses” that would bolster Oakland’s citywide retail strategy, according to the company’s filing.

Of considerable interest is which company or companies might operate in the new industrial building.

In a post on its website, Duke Realty lists several companies as tenants for its most modern warehouse projects: Amazon, Weber-Stephen, Carter’s and Dick’s.

James Connor, Duke Realty’s chief executive officer, mentioned the developer’s ties to Amazon several times during a conference call with analysts in October to discuss the company’s third-quarter financial results. Amazon is a “very good partner of ours,” Connor told the analysts.

The nature of the glass container factory as an infill property in Oakland dovetails with how Duke Realty describes its current efforts and leasing activity with Amazon.

The proposed development at the corner of Alameda Avenue and Fruitvale Avenue would use an array of design features to create an eye-catching building.

“In providing a high-quality industrial building, the project aims to improve the characteristics of the existing area with architecture, landscaping treatment and site planning,” Duke Realty said in the planning documents.

The creation of the new industrial, warehouse and office building is expected to create plenty of jobs, which would be a welcome contrast to the current condition of the long-shuttered complex.

“The project’s main goal is to create a thriving employment center,” Duke Realty stated.

Owens-Brockway Glass Containers factory, now closed, at 3600 Alameda Ave. in Oakland. (Google Maps)


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