I'm going to start off by saying that I think we're going to have some mixed opinions on this one. Last month the city council approved a 350,000 sqft "big box" retail development between Oakridge Mall and Almaden Plaza. It is a $30-50M project that is not being subsidized. The only rumored tenant so far is a Dick's Sporting Goods.
Now my first question is, what other "big box" tenants or chain restaurants could they possibly add there that don't already exist in the area? If you look at the map below, every chain you can imagine already exists somewhere in the vicinity. There are already millions of square feet of car-oriented retail in the area.
My second question is... in today's economy is it better to snatch the opportunity for a development such as this one or would it have been better to wait for a better use of this acreage? I would have preferred a mixed use development with housing, office, and local retail that is pedestrian friendly. This seems like a great place for an urban village. It's a tough call... take the tax money now or sit on empty land hoping for a better proposal in the future.