The Omni is an oasis in a concrete jungle. How can we provide some more fresh air and green space outside the building?
Let's start making some plans for how to make good use of some of the rooftop space we have available. Most of the roof is fairly precarious. So let's start by putting in a railing around the safest area (the flat roof of the disco?), and a walkway with railing from the hatch to the safe area.
Let's talk to some people in construction who know about roofs and rooftop gardens. The existing roof surface was never meant to have a lot of traffic, so we may need to put a deck over the existing roofing material. A rooftop garden space would be sooo much nicer than putting some chairs our in the street...
Strip garden along the outside of the building
Talk to the city about exactly where our property line is, and whether we can transform the couple feet along the outside of the building into a little green space ourselves! Given how wide our sidewalk is, and the fact that some of that space is already taken up by trees anyway, I think that would be well received - both by the City *and* our neighbors.
We break up 2-3 feet of the concrete directly in front of the building, plant flowers and edible herbs and berries, and provide a couple benches for Omniers and other passers bye to hang out. This should also provide plenty of space for both smokers *and* non-smokers to catch some fresh air, whereas I think a parklet would inevitable become a smokers-only affair...
Having happy folk outside the Omni, enjoying the sun, sipping on commie tea, reading books, laptoping, etc... It would be a great visual for passersby, newbies, and curious neighbors.
Not to mention many people have made comment on how we Need to get smokers away from the front door!! A parklet with umbrellas or a removable rain/sun covering of some sort would surely make a dent in this issue. I know it's difficult to bring ourselves to go sit on the ugly lawn chairs (lol), or stand out front under the awning on rainy days, but with a fancy shmancy parklet, there would be no more excuses.
Parklets can incorporate bike parking as well (at a rate of 10 bike parking spaces for 1 car parking space - see In Street Bicycle Parking Corral), but we already have more than enough space for bike parking on the sidewalk (see Outdoor bike parking).
The Omni is already having a very significant impact on car parking in the area. A parklet will take away one or two parking spaces, and even if we just convert our yellow curb area near the corner, I expect that our neighbors will view that as a significant imposition.
If people do insist on having a parklet, I think we need to figure out how we can provide additional parking spaces for the neighborhood to compensate. We should talk with the owners of the parking lot behind the old paint store, that is now used as a Xmas tree lot.
Spaces near the Omni
We should talk to the owners of the triangular strip of land at the end of 51st street that I brought up months ago (see https://www.google.com/maps/place/626+51st+St,+Oakland,+CA+94609). Could potentially house a little garden space, plus a few parking spaces to appease parking congestion concerns by our neighbors.