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Newark residents weigh in on future of NewPark Mall area

By Chris DeBenedetti
Thursday, August 9th, 2012 at 6:01 pm in Uncategorized.

Overheard at the Greater NewPark Mall Master Plan meeting held Wednesday night:

Woman #1: “What would you like to see at the mall?”

Woman #2: “Better stores.”

Woman #1: “More stores.”

It’s really that simple for some. “Give us more of something better,” many seem to be saying. 

But it’s more complicated than that, of course, and many Newark residents seem to understand that, judging by the creative and bold ideas offered by several people at Wednesday’s spirited meeting at the Silliman Center.

Click here to read the full story on the meeting.

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  • bbox231

    Who was in attendance and represented the interests, ideas and concerns of the actual property *owners* ?

  • Chris De Benedetti

    That’s a great question. No property owners were introduced, though I suppose a few of them could have been in attendance. The meeting was led by Terrence Grindall, Newark’s community development director and Ian Ross of City Design Collective. I plan to post a blog entry late this afternoon with a few more details from the meeting that I could not get into the story.

  • bbox231

    If the “key issue” is/was, as stated, a question of “Do we tear the mall down or do we renovate it?”, and if those who are empowered to make that decision aren’t even participating in the dialogue, isn’t this event a bit of a circle jerk??

  • Chris DeBenedetti

    Respectfully, I think it’s too premature to say that. If the property owners weren’t at the meeting, that doesn’t mean they aren’t being consulted for feedback. (But the property owners’ consensus is a fair topic for you to bring up. I’ll follow it as this process unfolds.) In the meantime, Wednesday night was the first step in getting the community’s feedback, and that’s what happened. For what it’s worth, the meeting on Wednesday was one of the better public outreach meetings I’ve attended as a reporter. City Design Collective was blunt, informative and engaged. The residents offered creative ideas and honest complaints without devolving into a gripe fest. That’s unique. It was a spirited meeting that I actually enjoyed attending, which I can’t always say. Now, none of this is to say that the project is a slam dunk. We’ll have to see, at every step of the way, whether it is proceeding in a smart, sensible, creative, realistic way. But as far as first steps go, it was was a pretty good first step, IMO.

  • Bbox231

    Fair points, Chris. Thanks for the comprehensive coverage.

  • West

    Perhaps they can move Newpark Mall to Pacific Commons, they have moved the movie theatre there and closed the one at Newpark, same owners of both venues

  • charlie C

    #6… with all due respect we could of had a major leauge baseball franchise in fremont today. those of you who opposed it at the time and won the day. a major leauge franchise would have been a 30 year cash cow that would have benifited *all* the people of fremont. with all due respect do you have any regrets?

  • West

    Charlie,
    leauge = league

  • charlie C

    West,
    West=California Guy