For more than 60 years, Pete’s Harbor has thrived as a haven for boaters and nature lovers alike. In honor of founder Pete Uccelli’s enduring legacy, the Harbor will now be transformed into a waterfront community for many more to enjoy. Here we tell the story of Pete’s Harbor and deliver the facts behind its future.
Pete’s Harbor dates back more than 60 years, when Pete Uccelli overcame overwhelming odds to create a family-friendly marina in the San Francisco Bay Area.
In the early 1950s, Pete – a South San Francisco native and entrepreneur – noticed an upsurge of boating enthusiasts, and a woefully inadequate number of berths available to accommodate steadily increasing numbers of privately owned boats. Unable to find a suitable local harbor to house his own boat, he saw an opportunity to provide a needed service to the local boating community.
Public Marina’s Future Now in Jeopardy
Redwood City, Calif. – Pete’s Harbor terminated its leases with the State Lands Commission as of June 21 under the continued threats of the State Lands Commission. This unfortunate action puts to end a bitter and decades-long dispute between the harbor and the state over the outer harbor waterway and makes it a near certainty that the outer harbor public marina at Pete’s Harbor will be forever lost.
The decision to terminate the leases that Pete’s Harbor has held for 28 years was made necessary by unfair and retaliatory treatment by State Lands Commission staff, who, after decades of being an absentee landlord – even ruled by a state audit to have “failed to perform the basic duties of a landlord” – issued a notice of breach and imposed a series of major capital improvements to be executed in 60 days. Within these demands, the state included “poison pills” of incurable conditions – most importantly the requirement to provide timely notice of Pete Uccelli’s death that occurred in 2005.
“It is with tremendous sadness that we have been forced into the position of terminating the Uccelli leases to the outer harbor that my late husband established and lovingly built a marina around,” said Pete’s widow, Paula Uccelli, 70. “My late-husband, Pete Uccelli, dedicated his life to this marina despite the state’s long-standing efforts to dismantle it. At this junction, the State Lands Commission has made it literally impossible to maintain the outer harbor and has in all likelihood needlessly ruined any prospect of a future public marina at Pete’s Harbor.”
By Bonnie Eslinger – Bay Area News Group, April 16, 2013
The developer who wants to build a waterfront apartment complex at Pete’s Harbor in Redwood City has dropped plans to build a private marina on the site’s state-owned outer harbor.
And project opponents are quickly seizing on that decision to argue that the revised plan should get a new, full-blown hearing before the planning commission.
Pete’s Harbor has long been leasing the outer harbor from the California State Lands Commission and operating it as a commercial marina. In September, Pete’s Harbor owner Paula Uccelli informed marina tenants they would need to leave by Jan. 15 to make room for a 411-unit residential development with private boat slips. A handful of boaters remain anchored at the marina in open defiance of the eviction deadline while others who left have continued their fight to prevent the marina from turning into a private operation.
By Jennifer van der Kleut – Redwood City-Woodside Patch, February 19, 2013
The local activist group Peninsula Direct Action (PDA) Monday sent out a press release in which members condemned alleged acts of harassment and intimidation of tenants by Pete’s Harbor staff, while also confirming that one of its members had claimed responsibility for recent phony social media accounts created to look like they belonged to harbor owner Paula Uccelli.
Last month, Patch reported that a media representative for surviving Pete’s Harbor owner Paula Uccelli had sent out a press release indicating that Uccelli’s home had been vandalized with dog feces previously, and that phony social media accounts had been created falsely in her name, presumably to humiliate her.
Adam Alberti of Singer Media said a Facebook page had been created with photos of Uccelli that included humiliating and unflattering captions, but was quickly taken down upon discovery. A Twitter account was also created, sending out fake tweets such as, “I’m Paula Uccelli! I OWN Redwood City and the local government!”
In a San Mateo County Times article dated January 6, 2001, Uccelli announced plans to sell the Harbor, “ending a dream that lasted almost half a century.”
As Ralph Nobles, a member of environmental group Friends of Redwood City, said at the time: “I think we’ll have to face the fact that the area is going to change quite a bit.”
Select the image to read the full article.
By Jennifer van der Kleut – Redwood City-Woodside Patch, Jan. 14, 2013
A spokesperson for Paula Uccelli has announced that a number of threats have been made and crimes committed against the Pete’s Harbor owner in recent weeks.
In a statement issued Monday, Adam Alberti condemned phony social media accounts made in Uccelli’s name, allegedly for the purpose of harassing and humiliating her, and that her home has been vandalized with dog feces recently.
He said physical threats against her safety have also been made, prompting her to call for increased security from bodyguards and the Redwood City Police Department.