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San Jose mixed-use apartments eyed west of Google village

Plans for a mixed-use apartment and retail complex have sprouted west of downtown San Jose, a development that would bring more than 100 residences to an area known as the Midtown district.

The proposed development at 259 Meridian Ave. near West San Carlos Street would consist of 110 to 120 residential units and 2,300 square feet of retail, according to documents on file with San Jose city planners.

“The city has been encouraging development within an urban village planning process for this area,” said Jerry Strangis, a principal executive with Strangis Properties, a realty firm that is the project consultant for the development. Strangis wouldn’t identify the principal developer of the property.

 

Read more from The Mercury News

 

 

San Jose mayor counters Evergreen Senior Homes initiative with own proposal

Sam Liccardo is concerned the initiative could open San Jose to new sprawling development.

San Jose City Council’s strategy to fend off a ballot initiative over a development in Evergreen — one it fears could override its general plan for land use — is a ballot measure of its own.

But attorneys for the private residential developers behind an initiative backed by more than 35,000 signatures say the city’s gambit will lose in court.

“We will pursue litigation,” elections attorney Sean Welch warned the council on Tuesday as his microphone was silenced at the end of his two minutes’ speaking time.

Mayor Sam Liccardo’s last-minute agenda addition to put a rival measure on the June ballot to override the one from Ponderosa Homes and developer Carl Berg, which won its ballot place through a petition drive, is yet to win City Council approval. All 10 members present Tuesday voted to delay final consideration until 8:30am on Thursday.

Read more from Silicon Valley Business Journal

 

 

Exclusive: A 102-year-old East Oakland warehouse has been reborn as offices and artist studios

The project is one of East Oakland’s biggest in years.

The property at 2744 E. 11th St. opened in 1916 as a cannery for H.G. Prince, a company that invented a method to remove pits from fruits – a fitting use in a neighborhood once known for its orchards. Decades later, Lucasey Manufacturing Corp., a maker of television mounts, bought the building and stored products there, part of the blue-collar industry of Oakland.

Another transformation will happen next month, when the building reopens as more than 100,000 square feet of offices, industrial and artist space called Artthaus Studios.

The project will be one of the largest new developments in East Oakland. It is the largest source of modern, renovated artist and maker space in the area, said Riaz Taplin, CEO of Riaz Capital, the project’s developer, general contractor and designer.

“Oakland has really taken this new role within the Bay Area as the home of the creative community. So creating a building to accelerate the innovation of those types of businesses and people and creators and artists was the goal in creating Artthaus Studios,” said Taplin.

Taplin believes the project provides three benefits for smaller businesses and creative companies: It creates collaboration by concentrating various businesses in the same building, it provides a new facility near a BART station and it’s relatively affordable for new space.

“We wanted to tailor the spaces to be for small, young businesses — entrepreneurial, small businesses, ideally in the creative industries,” said Taplin. “We wanted to create an environment, which made them competitive. We want to make it easy to collaborate. We wanted to make it easy for them to seek out customers.”

Read more from San Francisco Business Times

 

 

 

Apartment Renters Continue to Dominate Many of the Nation’s Cities

Renter households now make up the majority in 42 of the 100 largest cities in the U.S., according to RENTCafé.

In close to half of the largest U.S. cities, the majority of households now rent rather than own their primary residence, according to a new report from RENTCafé, a Yardi company.

The share of households that own their homes has now declined to the level last seen in the1980s and early 1990s. That’s been great news for the multifamily sector, as those would-be homeowners have filled up apartments.

The homeownership rate is likely to stay at roughly its current level for the foreseeable future due to recent changes in the tax code that favor renting over buying and the high cost of for-sale homes.

Read more from National Real Estate Investor

Oakland landlords will have to pay thousands if they evict tenants to move back in

A new Oakland ordinance requires relocation payments of thousands of dollars to renters evicted by landlords who are moving back to their properties.

Passed by the City Council on Jan. 16, the Uniform Relocation Ordinance creates a schedule of relocation payments that will increase every year based on consumer price index fluctuations.

The first schedule would require landlords to pay $9,875 to those evicted from three or more bedroom units, $8,000 to renters evicted from two-bedroom units and $6,500 to people evicted from studios or one-bedroom units. Households with low-income, elderly or disabled people or those with minor children would be entitled to an additional payment of $2,500 per unit.

“With uniform relocation, we have an opportunity here to take care of the poor among us who are forced out of their homes and forced to live on the streets,” Oakland Warehouse Coalition’s Jonah Strauss said at the council meeting.

The ordinance would expand on another approved by the council last year, which created the same uniform schedule of relocation payments for landlords who evict tenants under the state’s Ellis Act. The Ellis Act allows landlords to evict tenants if they take their property off the rental market.

Read more from East Bay Times

City Hall considers modular housing factory in SF

Potential project would create new housing for the homeless

On Tuesday, London Breed—in what turned out to be one of her final acts as the acting mayor—announced that the city will develop a plan to create a facility for the construction of prefabricated modular housing somewhere in San Francisco.

The proposal is tentative right now. A recent press release announced that “the city will create a business plan and fund a stakeholder engagement process” for the hypothetical future homes factory.

In the same announcement, Breed referenced both the housing crisis and the city’s chronic homelessness, saying, “It is clear that we need more housing and we need it now” and promising to “build homes in a timely, efficient manner.”

While this stops just short of saying the city plans to start investing more in modular homes as a means of creating new housing for the homeless, it’s still clear that’s the idea.

Read more from Curbed SF

 

Sen. Scott Wiener explains plan for taller, denser housing near transit

New bill would allow mid-rise development at transit hubs

In 2017, Senator Scott Wiener rewrote the rules on housing development for California cities with SB 35, a law that mandates municipalities to build more to keep up with demand or risk temporarily losing control of much of their entitlements process.

Now Wiener is backing another new housing bill and hoping for the same success; SB 827 would all but require that new housing near major transit hubs (as defined by the California Public Resources Code) be mid-rise construction of at least four stories.

In a Medium post published Tuesday, Wiener defended the bill from criticism and laid out what it will and will not do.

Read more from Curbed SF

 

Why Zillow says San Jose is the nation’s hottest housing market in 2018

Driven by quickly rising home prices and a tech job market that continues to draw more workers, the online real estate database Zillow has projected San Jose to be the nation’s hottest housing market in 2018 with San Francisco fifth in its top 10 list.

California, North Carolina and Texas each have two cities in Zillow’s top 10, which is based on a mix of six variables:

  • Its own home value and rent index forecasts for the year,
  • Income growth estimates,
  • Population growth,
  • Unemployment rates,
  • Job openings per person.
Read more from Silicon Valley Business Journal

Bill could add millions of new homes next to California’s public transit stations

California State Senator Scott Wiener proposed a trio of new housing bills on Thursday, including one that would make it easier to build taller projects near public transit.

Wiener (D-San Francisco)’s SB 827 calls for the statewide removal of single-family home and parking requirements for projects within a half-mile of transit hubs like BART, Muni and Caltrain stations.

The bill would mandate height limits of at least 45 feet to 85 feet for new projects, depending on how close they are to transit. Cities would be able to raise height limits beyond those minimums, and developers could also build smaller projects within the areas if they chose.

Read more from San Francisco Business Times

Downtown San Jose blighted blocks may get new life

SAN JOSE — A plan to build several dozen residential units in downtown San Jose is part of wide-ranging efforts to transform some blighted blocks, decaying buildings and vacant lots in the city’s urban heart into a vibrant community.

“Ultimately this is going to be a great, brand-new neighborhood in downtown San Jose,” said Bob Staedler, principal executive with Silicon Valley Synergy, a land-use and planning consultancy. “This area north of San Pedro Square has always been the hole in the doughnut of the downtown.”

Read more from East Bay Times