Oakland Tribune: Bankruptcy trustee releases funds to reduce fire hazard at Oak Knoll


Under legal pressure from the city of Oakland and neighbors, the bankruptcy trustee for Oak Knoll developer SunCal Companies has released money to cut down vegetation, clear out wood piles, repair fences and provide armed security guards for the 167-acre property in the Oakland hills.

Neighbors say the amount of money — $500,000 — released by the trustee is a fraction of what is needed to clean up the mess left by SunCal. They say the unchecked vegetation creates a fire danger and that the half-demolished buildings and exposed, crumbling asbestos left by the contractors create a health hazard.

Crews had begun removing asbestos from the buildings before SunCal halted all work. SunCal ignored a June 12 order from the city to remove the overgrown weeds, brush, trash and debris left behind. The city ordered SunCal to obtain permits and complete the demolition of the buildings and secure the premises.