In the summer of 2007, business and property owners in the Lake Merrittdetermined that they wanted to improve their business district. With over 10,000employees working in and around the Lake Merritt/Uptown district and the needfor additional City services, the property owners pooled their funds to hire NewCity America, Inc. to investigate and form a new “Lake Merritt/UptownCommunity Benefit District”. This Management District Plan is the result of that 12month effort.This effort for the investigation and formation of the new Community BenefitDistrict (CBD) has been funded through the combined efforts of various propertyowners and business owners in the proposed district area. The intent of this effortis to improve the public rights of way for all who work, live, conduct business,rent property in, or visit the district.Lake Merritt/Uptown business and property owners have never been organizedinto a cohesive, effective group. The effort to form this CBD is consistent withwhat business and property owners have done throughout Oakland and SanFrancisco over the past five years.Currently, similar Business Improvement Districts of Community Benefit Districtsare operating in Rockridge, Lakeshore, Montclair, Fruitvale, Laurel,Temescal/Telegraph and the Koreatown/Northgate districts. Efforts are currentlyunderway in Downtown Oakland, and under consideration in several ofOakland commercial corridors and neighborhoods.The issues of maintenance and order, cleanliness and safety are paramount toall who live in, work in and conduct business in the Lake Merritt/Uptown area.Many have seen the image of this district, as well as the image of Oakland, as awhole tarnished by recent events depicting a troubled area.These are issues that cannot be resolved by the City of Oakland alone, butrather must be handled at the community level. The proposed LakeMerritt/Uptown CBD would be funded through an assessment levied on eachand every parcel in the finalized and approved boundaries of the district.Affected property owners will determine the exact costs of funding these specialbenefit services. All properties, public, private, commercial, residential and non-profit would be included in this new assessment district and all will be required toparticipate financially upon approval.