On June 21, the Oakland City Council will vote on whether or not to approve the Oakland Zoo’s Expansion into Knowland Park.  At this meeting, the Council will also consider our appeal of the Planning Commission decision to approve the expansion project without a full Environmental Impact Report.  The Council is being asked by city staff to vote to deny our appeal and approve the project.  This would be the final vote, and there is no appeal possible after this, leaving as the only alternative a possible legal challenge in court. The time to come out and show support is NOW!

We are asking all of our supporters to come out and show support for EBCNPS, Friends of Knowland Park, the California Native Grasslands Association, and the Sierra Club in calling for the City Council to allow our appeal and to not approve the Zoo’s current expansion plan until a full Environmental Impact Report with alternatives has been completed.  Call your friends and come out to show support.  The best thing we can do right now is show the City Council that this is a major issue.  Please come prepared to speak in order to make sure your voice is heard in this process.

Oakland residents should also call their district’s City Council Representative to show them that their constituents do care about Knowland Park and true conservation, which doesn’t require building on sensitive natural habitat.  To determine your representative and for phone numbers and emails of city council representatives, see http://gismaps.oaklandnet.com/councils/

Date and Time:

When:  Tuesday, June 21, 5:30 pm (Meeting starts at 5:30, Our item will be heard after 6:30, so get there at 5:30 if you need to fill out a speaker’s card or to ensure you can find a seat.  Otherwise, we will see you at 6:30)

Where:  Council Chambers, City Hall, 1 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, downtown Oakland

We hope to see you there!

Also, there is a great op-ed in today’s Oakland Tribune about the Oakland Zoo Expansion.  The letter was written by Ruth Malone, co-chair of Friends of Knowland Park and our own Laura Baker.  Friends of Knowland Park is a community group that has joined EBCNPS and the California Native Grasslands Association to form a coalition appealing the Oakland Planning Commission’s decision to recommend the current and flawed Mitigated Negative Declaration/ Addendum instead of requiring a full Environmental Impact Report for this massive development project.  A link to the op-ed can be found here:  Zoo should consider alternatives on its expansion.

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