Jean Sweeney Park

From 1924 until the 1990s this 27-acre site was owned by the Railroad who long ago abandoned the yard and had planned to sell the acres to a housing developer. Alameda resident and advocate Jean Sweeney found the original contract between the City of Alameda and the railroad and discovered a clause which entitled the city to purchase the land back at the original purchase price. As a result, the property, even though valued at $20 million, was purchased for just under $1 million.

OWNERCity of Alameda


Planning for this open space spanned the next two decades with many advocates including Jean Sweeney, her family and other influential leaders and associations such as Bike Walk Alameda. The result is a monumental project that now provides for the largest open space park on the island of Alameda. McGuire and Hester was awarded the first phase of the project with a contract to transform the nearly vacant lot with large areas of significant vegetation overgrowth into land ready for park development.

Our crews went to work excavating hazardous soils and off-hauling contaminated soil that contained trace amounts of petroleum left behind by the railroad. McGuire and Hester worked closely with the city to test and re-test the soils and recommend efficient and effective methods to handle the soils. These efforts ensured the project site met Bay-Friendly environmental Standards. In addition to preparing an environmentally safe site, our team was also able to collaborate with the city and salvage many historical artifacts that the City of Alameda worked into the design of the park. Artifacts included portions of the original railroad and large 100+ year concrete address markers from homes that were once in the area.

Our crews installed the first half mile portion of the Cross Alameda Trail, a four-mile walking and cycling path. The next phase of the cross trail will be a 0.9-mile segment along Ralph Appezzato Memorial Parkway. Upon completion, it will stretch from the former Alameda Naval Air Station in the west of the city to near the Fruitvale Bridge in the east.

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