Tuesday brought the latest setback for what has been a controversial proposal to build 260 housing units over what is now the Spenger's parking lot on Fourth Street.
The group that wants to build 130 units of affordable housing on Fourth Street says it offered several options to address Ohlone concerns but was rebuffed.
The land on Fourth Street looks like a parking lot, but it represents what is left of the first village and funerary site of the author's ancestors and should be left alone.
Ohlone tribe members are trying to stop a development on Fourth Street. They say the site was home to their ancestors. The developer says no evidence of that has been found.
West Berkeley Investments recrafted its proposal to make 50% of the units affordable and to meet Berkeley's zoning laws. The project could be approved in 180 days.
What lies beneath the Spenger's parking lot has been hotly debated in recent months as discussions proceed about what might one day be developed there.
The discovery of a second set of human remains in a Fourth Street lot long considered to sit outside the boundaries of the West Berkeley Shellmound has some people wondering if Berkeley really knows where the perimeter should be.
Update April 10: The developer of the Fourth Street site issued a statement to Berkeleyside through its publicist, in response to the original April 8 story:
Berkeley community and zoning board members had a chance Thursday to weigh in on what the environmental impact report for a large mixed-use project planned for 1900 Fourth St. should focus on.
The development climate in Berkeley has improved so much in the past six years that there are now approximately 2,500 apartment units in the pipeline — a dramatic change from the two decades between 1970 and 1990 when only 600 units were built, according to experts who spoke at a forum on multi-family development held in Berkeley on Jan. 21.
The owners of an empty lot on Fourth Street that’s a designated city landmark related to Ohlone Indian archeological remains have applied to build a mixed-use development on the site.
After months of poking, prodding, sifting and examining soil, an archeological dig beneath the parking lot across from Spenger’s restaurant on Fourth Street found no evidence it had ever been home to a Native American shellmound.
So what’s lurking behind the recently erected wire fence around the Spenger’s parking lot, on Berkeley’s Fourth Street?