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Elephant Rumblings: Port of Oakland exec. director says new ballpark would have minimal impact

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Shipping containers rest at the Charles P. Howard Terminal, a possible location for a new Oakland Athletics baseball stadium, on Monday, Sept. 17, 2018, in Oakland, Calif. Photo By Noah Berger/The San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images

Happy Thursday, Athletics Nation!

We’re a week into the season already, as the A’s are set to wrap up their series in Tampa with this morning’s game. The Athletics won’t be back in Oakland until next week as they face the Jays in Toronto over the weekend, but that hasn’t stopped A’s news from popping up in the bay.

In an opinion piece for the Mercury News, Port of Oakland executive director Danny Wan detailed how the A’s moving into Howard Terminal wouldn’t hinder the port. The article goes into how if the A’s take over their ideal part of Howard Terminal, it would serve no ill purpose to port operations.

The space the Athletics would occupy with the ballpark project is currently used for short term port storage, and Wan stated that this storage can be moved to other areas of the port. According to Wan, there would be no significant impact to port operations if the A’s were to play in a Howard Terminal park, and that there’s enough space and storage for the Port of Oakland even if business grows exponentially over the next 25 years.

While it’s only a public opinion column, coming from someone so integrated to the port’s operations, it’s a nice change to some of the most recent ballpark discussions and recommendations. The next step for the A’s ballpark process is a vote by the Bay Conservation and Development Commission to reclassify the Howard Terminal land in June. Hopefully support from the port will do more to sway the BCDC in the A’s favour than the recommendation against reclassifying by the Seaport Planning Advisory Committee last month.

The BCDC vote is the next make or break part of the Athletics progress, then if successful fates turn to Oakland City Council for more binding decisions. News on the Howard Terminal ballpark will likely be a bit quieter over the next month or so, picking up in time for the June vote. If more words like Wan’s come over the next while, they can only help the A’s case.

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