A tale of two cities

Last week, Fremont’s City Council approved a joint road project with Union City even though dozens of residents thought it was a terrible idea. On Tuesday Union City, which has been pushing for the new road from Mission Boulevard to Paseo Padre, also approved it.

Not only was there no opposition. But the council took a break and drank apple cider to celebrate.

Matt Artz


  1. It’s funny to see all those people whine about the new road coming to link mission blvd and paseo.

    The fact is, the “Historic Parkway” should have been done a long time ago. In fact the major road block is the jerk with the farm bordered by Fremont Blvd., Paseo, Tamayo, and Decoto. You know, the guy whose farm looks COMPLETELY out of place? That guy would never give up his land, and if he had done so years ago as he should have (or if the city/state took it via eminent domain), the “Historic Parkway” would have been built and ended this nonsense years before those whiners ever moved into their current homes.

  2. I am shocked.

    In the good ol’ USA – A private land owner who “should have” given up his private land.

    And this guy is a “jerk” (according to Rick) for blocking progress despite the obvious potential use of eminent domain. Hey rick – d’ya suppose just maybe that eminent domain didnt play cause there was some LEGAL REASON that got in the way ? ????

    This guy owns a farm, a city grows up around him. And he’s the idiot – so let’s bad mouth the guy and take his land (???)

  3. I may be wrong, but I believe that land is already owned by either the city or the county or some such and is leased by the rancher. I think the same goes for Reagan’s Nursery. It’s all part of the same swath of land that cuts from 880 over almost all the way to Niles Blvd. I think it was acquired many years ago.

    Take a look at the Google Satellite view…

  4. I hope AMac is correct for all the right reasons.

    My objections and concerns were aimed at the suggestion that a property owner should not have the rights to choose what to do with his/her property and, if use of the land was somehow deemed in the best interest of the surrounding community exercising eminent domain would be an appropriate direction.

    If for whatever reasons the property owner chooses not to cooperate and if, for whatever reasons, eminent domain falls flat – characterizing the individual as a “jerk” seems to be ignorant of obvious facts guaranteed freedoms we hold valuable and undermines R.M.’s credibility (again).

  5. Anony: Do you suppose that our lazy city of Fremont didn’t even try?

    AMacRae: Interesting, can anyone confirm? I know it looks like the path was “paved” long ago, but I was always told growing up in that area that it was the rancher/farmer who held up the “Historic Parkway” by not selling his land to the city.

  6. Once again we are talking about the road to nowhere or Union City Bart Driveway.
    Docoto Road should have been made a expressway from Mission Blvd. To 880.
    Mayor Mark Green did not like that and insisted on moving Union Cities traffic problem to Fremont with a road to nowhere. Mayor Mark Green is laughing at Fremont saying, I gotcha.
    This just moves the problem to Pareo Padre Parkway and Decoto Road. Imagine all the traffic making a right hand turn on to PPP and immediately moving to the left hand turn lane to enter Docoto Road.
    Our Local Politicians let us down.

  7. First, I think those who own a home off the Isherwood corridor should get a popsicle and a pat on the back when this thing is built, and that’s it. Their complaints are nearly as dumb as buying near rail tracks then wondering why they want to run trains on them.

    BUT, the east-west bottlenecks at Decoto and Alvarado-Niles and at Decoto and 880 are the problem, not the road between.

    The new corridor may alleviate the Decoto/Alvarado-Niles bottleneck, but without improvements to the 880 interchange Caliguy’s predictions are spot on: The end result will have UC traffic magically dumped the middle of Fremont.

    I do have a suggestion for Union City. Widen Decoto between 11th and Alvarado-Niles by paving a 20′ strip on the north side of Decoto, and yes this includes Kennedy Park. That way UC traffic can get backed up at 880/Decoto faster, and the rest of Fremont doesn’t have to suffer for it.

  8. Rick –
    You miss the point –

    Somebody who has legal control over this property chose to do with it as they see fit. The local community could have exercised eminent domain – but for whatever reasons didn’t.

    You want to call the guy a “jerk” because he did what he wanted with HIS PROPERTY ???!!! Dude – re-read your constitution.

  9. Some facts to add to the rhetoric.

    The “historic corridor” was planned to be a connector from a freeway, 238, which was to come through Hayward, Union City, and Fremont and to tie to 680 at about where Blacow would intersect if it did. In fact, the overpass to facilitate that connection was built, never used, and demolished a couple of years ago.

    238 was cancelled by Caltrans sometime around 1970 and the connector was abandoned. The state owned much of the land and it just sat there. The property where Regan’s Nursery is was purchased by the city to prevent a lawsuit, with the intent that maybe someday we would build a Fremont street to avoid Decoto Road. There never was a specific plan for such a connector.

    Brookvale was built around the same time the route was cancelled and most of the homes were purchased with people understanding that there would be no road there.

    Then, in 1986, the original Measure B was passed and it included another crack at 238, promoted by the City of Hayward. It would come through Hayward as a freeway and then through Union City as a parkway, but ending in Fremont somewhere at or before Niles Canyon Road. Seeing they had a problem with pushing a traffic jam into Fremont, they came up with the idea of a new 84 in the historic corridor. It required matching funds from Hayward, Union City, and Fremont. We never supported it and would never have contributed our share, about $8.4 million.

    The project languished is the last project on the original Measure B list. The 238 freeway/parkway never got built. Five intersections were improved to facilitate traffic movement on Mission, including Niles Canyon/Mission in Fremont and the widening of the Alameda Creek bridge as part of that project.

    84 has been kicked around and the design has been studied and analyzed to death. The price has gone from early estimates around $40 million (approx) to $106 million in an earlier iteration, to today’s estimate of $213 million, of which they have about $145 million or so. Caltrans has decided the design does not meet state highway standards and has pulled out of it. It is no longer route 84, but rather the East-West connector.

    The farmer leases the land to stable horses and has not financial interest in the land or the project.

    Now, from the facts to my opinion. I have, forever, said that the project moves a traffic jam from one place to another. There is a certain amount of traffic which can come from Fremont on Mission or through Niles Canyon. That meters west bound traffic today and would meter it with the new road. East bound traffic in peak periods would hit those two roads and back up on Mission instead of backing up as they leave 880 or 84 now.

    The project anticipates spending more than two hundred million dollars to build a road to support Union City’s multimodal station which is today a BART station with a rail line a short distance away. Whether the multimodal station is a good idea or not I will not judge, but I can tell you for sure that there are a lot of places $200,000,000 spent on transportation solutions will solve a lot more problems. It is fairly comparable to Sarah Palin’s bridge to nowhere.

    End of my opinion.

  10. Gosh Gus Morrisson – are you suggesting that individual property rights are “rhetoric” ???

  11. I think he is differentiating between opinion (rhetoric) and facts. The property rights issue discussion was sparked by the notion the rancher could be forced to sell his land between Fremont and Paseo Padre, when it turns out he doesn’t own the land at all.

  12. Got it . . . tks for setting me straight, AMac.

    I guess I saw it as the notion that *should* be compelled to sell their interests in their land – the consideration of which has little to do with rhetoric -IMHO.

  13. too darn anxious to press “submit” – – should have read “I guess I saw it as the notion that *someone* should be compelled . .. .

  14. From the looks of the Google Earth pic, the farm that is on both sides of Isherwood Drive next to the Quarry Lakes Park would be taken over for this parkway as well.

    That should make for a lovely experience at the regional park – nothing like a 4 lane thoroughfare to enhance your experience.

    And I am with Gus as far as this “solution” just relocating the problem. I have commuted that route (84 up Decoto Road to Alvarado Niles) for going on 10 years now. It certainly is not so big an issue that hundreds of millions of dollars needs to be thrown its way. Yes, there is a backup at Fremont Blvd. and Decoto. It backs up two blocks to Cabrillo. Then it slows again a bit in Union City near the Alvarado Niles Rd. intersection. And that’s it.

    Don’t even get me started on Union City and their delusions of grandeur with the intramodal station. It’s the most assinine thing I’ve seen in a long time.

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