Discussion of recent office market activity in San Jose and Silicon Valley more broadly.
Archive for the ‘FOCUS’ Category
Road repair on several streets in San Jose is underway, in conjunction with improving the bike lane network downtown and an upcoming new bike share program.
Mercury News article discusses the Grand Boulevard Initiative efforts for El Camino Real, and the proposal for bicycle & pedestrian, as well as bus rapid transit improvements (including dedicated bicycle and bus lanes).
Union Pacific will be accepting offers for purchase and development of two large parcels of land next to the future Warm Springs BART station in Fremont.
North Fair Oaks Community Plan draft document readied for community workshop and presentation to the Planning Commission and San Mateo County Board of Supervisors.
Work is moving ahead on establishing a financing district to maintain improvements to The Alameda in San Jose, a segment of the Grand Boulevard that stretches up the peninsula along El Camino Real.
While funding for the improvements has been secured, the City has been looking to the adjacent property owners to fund the maintenance and upkeep once the improvements are in place.
Planned improvements to the street include new lighting, landscaping, and raised medians, along with improved pedestrian safety features such as enhanced crosswalks and sidewalk bulb-outs.
In a special study session, San Jose City Council discussed the preferred alternative for the Diridon Station Area Plan and gave direction to staff to begin environmental review for the plan.
Newark City Council discusses Dumbarton Transit-Oriented Development project for 200-acres on the western edge of town.
And yet, Palo Alto officials agree that the city needs more housing. The Association of Bay Area Governments, a regional planning organization that sets “fair share” housing requirements for cities in the nine Bay Area counties, released a recommended planning scenario in February that calls on Palo Alto to plan for 12,000 units of new housing over the next 25 years — a mandate that city officials see as ridiculously excessive. But as the citys population continues to grow and increased traffic congestion becomes inevitable, few disagree that some new housing will need to be provided to reduce the swell of commuters.
The broad discussion includes one colossal wildcard — Caltrain. The agency, which draws its funding from three Bay Area transit agencies, is facing a $30 million deficit on a $100 million budget because of reduced contributions from the agencies. Caltrain has been considering a series of drastic service reductions, including halting of weekend service and station closures. On Thursday, Caltrain officials weighed a staff proposal to axe weekend services at California Avenue in Palo Alto, San Antonio in Mountain View and 10 other stations. The Caltrain board decided to postpone the decision until April 21.
Caltrains struggles have created anxieties all along the San Francisco-to-San Jose corridor, where commuters depend on the transit service. But these anxieties are particularly acute for those communities whose land-use plans were drawn up around Caltrain. Officials from cities along the corridor attended the Thursday meeting and stressed the crucial role Caltrain plays in their transit-oriented-development plans. They included Palo Alto Deputy City Manager Steve Emslie, who urged Caltrain officials not to curtail weekend service for the California Avenue station. He stressed Caltrains importance to the citys long-term land-use plans for the business district.
The approved guidelines include designs for streets, pedestrian walkways and open spaces, as well as for buildings between three and five stories — which would include apartments and possible retail uses. The guidelines will guide development of about 31 acres in the business park that were rezoned by the council in October 2009.
The rezoning included 11 acres of the W.P. Care site just south of the Dublin-Pleasanton BART station, which was rezoned from industrial, commercial and office uses to mixed use. BRE Properties’ 8-acre site and 12 acres of the 33-acre Roche Molecular System site were also approved for the same rezoning.