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Jean Sweeney Open Space Park Fund

Our Mission

The Jean Sweeney Open Space Park Fund mission is to provide tax deductable services, materials and funding for the planning, development and ongoing maintenance of the Jean Sweeney Open Space Park, a public project of the City of Alameda Recreation and Parks Department.

The Jean Sweeney Open Space Park Fund is a 501c3 foundation formed to assist with funding for the park and to preserve the spirit of an open space park envisioned by Jean Sweeney and the voters of Alameda. The park is an unfunded project of the City of Alameda Recreation and Parks Department so funds to develop the park will need to come from donations and grants. This foundation will provide a tax deductible means for donations from those who wish to help.

This foundation will work for donations and grants by individuals , businesses, government, and other foundations. All funds will be used specifically for the design, development, and on-going maintenance of the Jean Sweeney Open Space Park. We will fund specific park projects in the park and assist the Recreation and Parks Department with matching funds required for grants obtained by ARPD. We will also provide recognition for volunteers who work to make the park a fitting memorial to Jean Sweeney.

Between 2000 and 2002 Jean Sweeney worked to place an initiative on the November 2002 ballot to rezone the sections of land known as the Alameda Belt Line Railroad switching yard to open space. The rezoning would keep the 22 acres of land from being developed into residential and commercial property. The initiative was passed by a majority vote of the citizens of Alameda.

The text of the initiative read:

Section 1. Purpose

A. To provide land particularly suited for open space in a city that is under-served by areas that can be used for park and recreation purposes and to preserve a habitat for unique plant and animal life that live on the land so designated.

B. To carry out the provisions of Sections 3, 5 and 6 of the City General plan, as those sections pertain to the planning for, and designation of, open space in the city: and more particularly, Section 3.2.f and Section 6.1.h, as amended, which provide for a greenway situated in the area of the Alameda Beltline Railroad Yard rights of way, and to amend Table 6-2 of the General Plan to designate that this greenway shall cover approximately 22 contiguous acres.

C. To pursue park and open space grant opportunities and cooperative agreements with local, regional and state agencies for expansion of the City's park and open space system as suggested at Section 6.1.c of the Alameda General Plan.

D. To implement Section 4 of the City General Plan, in particular Sections 4.4 and 4.5., which encourage pedestrian and bike ways.

In 2013 the Alameda Recreation and Parks Department (ARPD) held community meetings and an on-line survey to determine what elements the citizens of Alameda wanted to have included in the 22 acre space of the former Alameda Belt Line Railroad switching yard.

The following items were voted as the most desired elements and the Alameda City Council voted to have the park designed with these elements included.
  1. Walking and Biking Trails
  2. Natural Open Space Habitat for Wildlife
  3. Picnic Areas
  4. Community Gardens
  5. Playgrounds
  6. Open Lawn Areas
The mission of the Jean Sweeney Open Space Park Fund is to assist with the implementation of the spirit of the initiative and community input for elements to be included in the park. We will provide funding and guidance toward this goal. Jean Sweeney and the people have expressed the desire for a park space that doesn't presently exist in the city of Alameda, “a place different than the other park spaces with manicured lawns, recreation, ball parks, organized picnic grounds and activities planned for financial gain for ARPD”. The dream is that the park will be a place where today’s residents want to visit and where tomorrow’s residents will want to come. We will assist in any way possible to accomplish these goals.

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Published on:  February 21, 2014