We believe that the park and unused plot of land located at 19th St and Telegraph ave and bordered by the Uptown apartment complex and the Fox Theater is the best candidate for Occupy Oakland’s re-occupation.
The park and adjacent land offer several strategic and symbolic advantages:
- The park is only three blocks from OG Plaza and 14th & Broadway
- The park is rarely used and features a raised platform that can be used for large meetings as well as tables and chairs for smaller meetings
- The park features a “remember them” sculpture with famous social justice and freedom fighter figures such as Coretta Scott King, Ghandi, Fredrick Douglass, Malcolm X, Cesar Chavez, and Harvey Milk among others
- The sculpture was overseen by the Chamber of Commerce which is a direct opponent of the Occupy movement
- The park is only one third of the block and the rest of the block is unpaved land that has been neglected for two years. Moving the occupation here cancels out the argument that we are taking up space that others are trying to use.
- This location is in the middle of an entertainment district with lots of foot traffic and many opportunities to interact with others who are visiting Downtown Oakland
- It is near numerous residential areas so any police operation to evict the encampment will happen in front of hundreds of onlookers
- The park is located in the uptown neighborhood which is the area that the Chamber of Commerce, the Lake Merritt/Uptown District Association and Downtown Oakland Association, major real estate developers, and city hall are all actively trying to gentrify. These groups represent the interests of the 1% in Oakland and are also the groups that are directly trying to destroy Occupy Oakland. Setting up a camp here will be a symbolic move to put pressure on these groups and send a message that they only look out for the interests of big business and developers, not the needs of all people in Oakland.
FURTHER READING ON OAKLAND’S 1%: