I know a member of the MLB committee from 2009 that researched the inability of the A’s to build a stadium in Oakland. Here is what I was told:
They had two locations within the city of Oakland. One of those sights was near Jack London Square and would have been great for ferry transportation since the Bay Area is subject to traffic issues like most metropolitan areas. The same architect that built Coors Field in Colorado was hired to do renderings for both sites. Clorox had made a commitment to sponsor the stadium (as Clorox Field). So it was there and it would have been great and would have been easy to do.
But, as I was told, Wolff did everything he could to shit can both ideas. On the Jack London Square stadium specifically, he complained about having to deal with HOAs and potential lawsuits in the area by those groups who may object. He was a constant source of negativity on both sites. He simply did not want a new stadium in Oakland.
In the end, the deduction was that old man wanted to maximize his profit on selling the team. To do that, he felt a new stadium needed to be built in one of the wealthiest areas of the United States (Silicon Valley) and then he could sell the team among well financed competitors. Its all about greed and nothing more.