Search is on for new Concord Naval Weapons Station master developer

Concord Naval Weapons Station.

CONCORD, CA — The City Council gave the green light to begin looking for a new master developer for the Concord Naval Weapons Station with unanimous approval of a Request for Qualifications at the April 6 meeting.

The project has been in review mode since a deal with previous master developer Lennar Concord LLC collapsed in March 2020, after Lennar and the Contra Costa Building Trades Council were unable to reach agreement on how much union labor the developer would use on the $6 billion project.

The next developer must adhere to the city’s Concord First policy, which requires 40 percent of construction labor be local hires and payment of prevailing wage on all construction. This was the issue that sunk the Lennar agreement last year.

Selection process

During the selection process, the council will quiz applicants on their vision for the project as well as their experience and bandwidth to take on a project this size.

“We want to pin down their ability to comply with the Area Plan as it exists now and bring up any anticipated changes up front,” Councilwoman Laura Hoffmeister said.

The RFQ prohibits any applicant from making political contributions to elected city officials or staff or to any candidate running for city office during the selection process. This language was inadvertently left out of the draft, and the council added it back before approving the final RFQ.

“We knew this was going to be a part of the agreement, so we had the language ready,” Councilman Edi Birsan said in answer to public comment criticizing the omission. “We don’t condone bribery.”

June 18 application deadline

Deadline for application is June 18, with interviews and review throughout the summer. Council expects to wrap up the process and finalize an Exclusive Negotiating Agreement by Sept. 23.

Funding for the selection process comes from previous loans from the city to the Local Reuse Authority. Once selected, the master developer will pick up all costs.