Big plan afoot in Oakland

Written by Diana Nelson Jones on .

For more than a year, hundreds of people in Oakland have participated in building a masterplan that projects their big picture of desirable progress and process through 2025.

The final draft of the Oakland 2025 masterplan is available here. oaklandplan

The partners in this grand scheme will throw a release party Nov. 1 from 6 to 8p at the University of Pittsburgh’s Alumni Hall, 4227 Fifth Ave. Refreshments, giveaways, and networking opportunities will abound.

To RSVP or inquire about release party, transportation or childcare, contact Tara Sherry-Torres at 412.621.7863 ext.17 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Oakland is Pittsburgh’s city within a city, made up of four official neighborhoods — South Oakland, Central Oakland, West Oakland and North Oakland — and numerous unofficial ones such as Oakcliffe.

It has hyper-local people and dwellings tucked into crannies while it presents the broadest international face of any neighborhood in the city and much of its fine architecture.

It has many portals, some of them beautiful — thinking Schenley Park — and some of them hideous — most notably at Craft Place and the Boulevard of the Allies on the right side if you’re coming from Downtown.  An eyesore at that location is a head-scratcher.

But it also has big plans that include comprehensive greening strategies, multi-corridor strategies and transit strategies.

A notice sent to me by architect Rob Pfaffmann, whose firm was a partner in the masterplanning process, includes this description about the road traveled from the kick-off event in March 2001:

“Since then, 55 community dialogue sessions, 4 public meetings, 4 community design workshops, a week-long open house with a “pop-up” storefront, 4 hands-on community “walk-shops”, 2 early action teams, 4 draft presentation sessions and dozens of individual stakeholder interviews have engaged over 400 community members in a participatory process that is unprecedented in Oakland.”

Image above courtesy of Pfaffmann + Associates and the Studio for Spatial Practice

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