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STOCKTON (CBS SF) — After being docked at Treasure Island for months, the mysterious Google Barge is heading to Stockton to be finished, an official confirmed to KPIX 5 on Thursday.
The director of the Treasure Island Development Authority, the agency that leased out the dock for the project, confirmed that the barge would be towed to the Port of Stockton by next week, weather permitting.
The move is expected to take place before any penalties for operating the barge without the proper permits can be applied.
Earlier this year, the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) had ruled the floating showroom is in violation of local permit rules and must be removed from its Treasure Island spot or face fines.
BCDC executive director Larry Goldzband told KPIX 5 on Wednesday that they would have liked to see the project stay in San Francisco Bay.
“There are organizations and individuals in the East Bay and from the North Bay who are very interested in providing the work for Google to complete the barge. There’s no shortage of qualified, permitted organizations to do the work,” Goldzband said.
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Published reports had speculated the barge may have been heading to Stockton.
“I don’t have anything to report except that if Google is listening to your report, I’d love to have them out here,” Stockton Port Director Richard Aschieris told KCBS Radio earlier. “They’re a great company. They’re taking an interest in us. If they would want to consider our facilities here, I’d love to have some discussions with them.”
Richmond City Councilman Tom Butt was hopeful that Google would come his way, but in an interview published by CNET, he said he had spoken to a well-placed source who confirmed the Google Barge was going to Stockton.
Google has not commented.
The tech giant still has to pay for its lease at Treasure Island through July. That cost will be more than a quarter of a million dollars.
Despite the move, the permit scuffle involving the Google Barge is not over. Any future projects at Treasure Island will need permits. Also, if Google wants to bring the barge back to San Francisco Bay once it is finished, permits are also needed for each location where it is docked.