Tuesday’s vote by Concord’s City Council to form a redevelopment area at the former Concord Naval Weapons Station could make up to $556 million available to invest in the base’s reuse over the next 45 years.
The funds would go toward cleanup and construction of infrastructure at the site, located 40 miles east of San Francisco, reports the Contra Costa Times. The newly created redevelopment agency would be funded through increases in taxes that occur as the property value of the redevelopment area rises.
If Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal to eliminate the state’s 425 redevelopment agencies is approved by the state legislature as a way to free up billions of dollars for schools and local government, though, Concord would need to look elsewhere to finance the weapons station’s reuse. The stakes are high, Concord City Manager Dan Keen told the newspaper: “I know of no other [military base] reuse project in the state that did not have redevelopment and where redevelopment wasn’t an essential tool. … There’s just too many obstacles you face with a closed military base.”