Co-op Changes and Open Views

By late summer, one hull, connected docks, and two soon-to-be demolished homes were what remained of the Gates Cooperative in its old location | photos and post by Jen Gennari and Jenny Stein
In mid August, Diver Doug's hull was moved to Main Dock
Then it was time to dismantle the old docks
Manuel offloads the pieces of lumber and foam one by one...
into a dumpster located adjacent Yellow Ferry and across from East Pier
Soon the remaining debris was retracted to in front of the Charles Van Damme Dock
By September, all that was left were old pilings
TJ Nelsen and his crew worked with Claus Koestel to remove the pilings one by one
The new view, with just a few pilings left to be removed

The lagoon is looking different these days.

The last vestiges of the Gates Co-op moved in late summer. Since then TJ Nelsen and Claus Koestel have been overseeing the removal of the old pilings, a requirement of BCDC. Walking out the viewing pier at the new Waldo Point Harbor park gives visitors and residents an open vista of the lagoon and the floating homes around it.

Children and adults have been enjoying swimming in the wider lagoon. Claus cautions those who swim near the viewing pier in the old Gates area. Don’t put your feet down; there could be metal fragments, glass and other sharp objects in the mud.

Our community has always known that nothing is constant but change. The floating homes have evolved, from the early days after World War II to the rollicking 60s and 70s to tidy rows of funky and coveted homes today. It took decades for an agreement to be reached, and a permit was issued in 2004. The reconfiguration of Waldo Point Harbor, scheduled to begin in 2012 and to last four years, is expected to be complete by the end of 2018. The phased plan and other documents can be found here. The end result is that the 38 homes of the Gates Cooperative are to be managed by the EAH and maintained by them for a minimum of 20 years as affordable housing.

For a detailed history, saluting all the players, read Pam Bousquet’s account in the Nov/Dec 2013 issue of the Floating Times (PDF).

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