Thursday, July 31, 2014

Civic Hacking: Code For San Jose

A group of local volunteers have decided to put their tech skills to good use outside of their day job. Code for San Jose enables civic-minded hackers to develop apps and tools that are useful to the San Jose community. It has just been around for a few months and they already have a couple projects underway. If you're a techie and you want to give back to the local community (while meeting like-minded folks), this looks like a pretty cool option. For more info, just head over to the Code for San Jose Website.

Back Home

Who We Are

Launched in March 2014, we are a Code for America brigade: a group of volunteers who are passionate about using our skills to advance civic innovation in San Jose. Our members represent a range of skill sets and interests, spanning the high tech, local government and non-profit sectors. Our co-leaders are Kalen Gallagher and Michelle Thong.

What We Do

We promote civic innovation in two main ways:
  1. Civic hacking: Our members develops civic apps, data visualizations and other tools that are useful and inspiring to the San Jose community. We hold twice-monthly civic hack nights and organize quarterly special events such as hackathons.
  2. Policy and advocacy: Our policy team educates community leaders on open data and open government best practices, and advocates for local open data policies.

Join Us

We welcome coders, designers, data geeks, policy wonks and community members of all types with an interest in using technology, creativity and the human spirit to solve real problems.
Code for San Jose is a platform for you to work on projects that you’re passionate about and that make a difference in your community.
Come check out our Civic Hack Nights on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month at Nextspace San Jose from 6:30pm to 9:30pm. RSVP on our Meetup page!


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Three New Apartment Buildings Coming to Japantown

8 acres of land in Japantown at 357 E. Taylor St. is expected to go into contract with a major apartment builder soon. There were big plans for this site five years ago, but the economy killed any potential for development back then. Now, it looks like things are moving forward and the land is already entitled for around 400 residential units.

The project should include three new five-story buildings with a chance for even greater density. The old Continental Can Co. brick warehouse at the site will be preserved and even perhaps integrated into the project. A 1-acre park would be in the mix here as well.

Source: SVBJ

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Winchester Movie is Back on Track

A couple years ago news broke that Hammer Films would make a movie based around the Winchester Mystery House. The original target launch was Halloween of 2013, which would have been perfect given Sarah Winchester's obsession with the number 13. Now, it looks like they are bringing on brother filmmakers Michael and Peter Spierig to both rewrite the original script and direct the movie.

This will be the very first film to be shot inside of the Winchester Mystery House and filming is being penned for early 2015. I'm really looking forward to this one!

Sources:, hat tip to Mark and Dark Horizons, hat tip to Dan De La O

Monday, July 28, 2014

Electronic Sriracha Festival on Aug. 30th @ St. James Park!

This has to be one of the best ideas for a new event that I've come across in a long time. A couple years ago Moveable Feast launched The Taco Festival of Innovation, then last year they started the Bacon Festival of America, and now they are going for their hottest event yet... the Electronic Sriracha Festival!

The festival will encompass two city blocks at St. James Park and features three stages, 24 DJs representing the best of Bay Area-bred electronic music (list below), four bars, and 120 sriracha-infused dishes. There will be over 40 food trucks and food tents and all dishes and drinks will be priced at $6 or less. Oh, and SJ MADE will be there as well.

It is all going down Labor Day Weekend--August 30th--from noon to 8pm. Admission will run $20 in advance or $30 at the door (kids under 12 are free).

These are the types of events that will return St. James Park to its former glory, so lets help make this one a success! You can get more info at their Facebook page over here.

Sam F
John Beaver Live with Krishna Lee on Drums & Greg Manacho on Guitar
Ross FM
Carlos Alfonzo
Tomas Phan
Ian Rey

Aaron Axelsen
Dead Funk
Andy P
Mr. Tyler Jackson
California Casual
DJ Hil
Bare Knuckles
James Ashley

Los Disco Duro
Bobby Acosta
Double A and Jay Reese
DJ Basura
Haptic Synapses
Mike Zhao

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Santana Row August 2014 Happenings

San Jose, CA – Summer may be winding down but Santana Row is extending the sunny mood through fall with new, exciting events on the agenda. The Tech Museum of Innovation and Santana Row partners on a first ever “tech walk,” a benefit event that pairs tech with good eats and great shopping. The annual fall fashion shows changes it up a bit by adding a sophisticated twist with an afternoon high tea and excitement to the evening event with a nightclub theme. Fall cultural celebrations coming to the The Row: Mehregan Persian festival and Diwali, the Hindu festival of light. For Yoga fans, the second annual Yoga on the Row is on the way in September.

Retail Happy Hour
Wednesdays through August
6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Summer shopping is better than ever at Santana Row with Retail Happy Hour, an invitation to stop in different stores every Wednesday for music by DJs, raffles and exclusive discounts. Each week, Santana Row creates a “passport” that lists the participating retail locations, such as Diesel, Icebreaker Touchlab, Boutique Harajuku and Scotch & Soda. Champagne, wine, cocktails, appetizers, cupcakes and discounts make it a festive evening of shopping. The passport will be available online at, through Facebook, in participating shops and at the Concierge Center. The event is free and open to the public.

Mommy & Me and Daddies, Too: “Just Dance”
Tuesday, Aug. 12, 10 a.m. to noon
Ballet San Jose School presents “Just Dance,” with a special performance and mini dance classes for kids. Enjoy live entertainment from Andy Z, the San Jose Public Library, free face painting, balloon animals and snacks.
Details: 10 a.m. to noon at Park Valencia. Mommy & Me is a free kids’ club held on the second Tuesday of every month from May through December. For more information, call 408.551.4611 or visit

Free Yoga on Saturdays, presented by Lululemon Athletica
Saturdays, through September 27, 8:30 a.m.
Practice your sun salutations under the sunshine at Park Valencia every Saturday morning at 9 a.m. from May through September. The complimentary classes are held outdoors, with registration opening at 8:30 a.m. For more information, contact Lululemon, 408.557.8721.

Cars & Croissants
Fourth Saturday of the month: Aug. 23, Sept. 27, Oct. 25, 9 a.m. to noon
Continues through December
Santana Row partners with 100 OCT to present Cars & Croissants on The Row, a monthly gathering for exotic car owners and car enthusiasts. On the fourth Saturday of the month, exotic car owners are invited to park on Santana Row Boulevard from Alyssum Lane to Tatum Boulevard, display their cars and mingle with other enthusiasts. The morning meet-up for coffee, croissants and cars drew 400 people and 60 cars during the first event and continues to grow in popularity. This event is free and open to the public.

A look ahead to September and October…

Tech + Tastings at Santana Row, presented by The Tech Museum of Innovation
Thursday, Sept. 4, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Join us for the first-ever tech walk, an only-in-Silicon Valley event that brings together the best of two San Jose destinations.
The evening’s highlight is a wine stroll around Santana Row with shop stops that will feature exhibits from The Tech. Ticket holders will be given:
•       Access to hands-on tech exhibits
•       Wine & food pairings
•       Exclusive discounts to Santana Row shops and restaurants
•       Signature Santana Row wine glass
Registration is in Santana Row Park, and will begin at 5:50 p.m. Exhibits include, “Your Life in Data” which lets participants experience the latest in wearable data gathering; “Minimasher,” a multiplayer electronic instrument; “3D Printing-The Future of Making,” demonstrations of the wonder of 3D; “Hacker vs. Hacker,” a challenge to break into a safe and win a prize; and “Scribble Scratch,” a modified consumer DJ controller that puts you in control of the DJ rig, the iconic Hip Hop instrument.
Registration begins at 5:50 p.m. in Santana Row Park. The event is a benefit for The Tech Museum of Innovation. Tickets are $40 and will be available at

A Stylish Saturday at Santana Row
High Tea at 3 p.m. and Fashion on The Rocks at 6 p.m.
Saturday, Sept. 6
Whether you like your fashion brought to you demurely with tea or lemon or with a twist of Santana Row has a show to fit your style.
Join the fashion flock for the annual fall fashion shows at Santana Row Park. The afternoon show features the hottest trends for fall served with high tea while the evening catwalk takes on a nightclub theme. Both shows are a benefit for the Silicon Valley Community Foundation.
High Tea at 3 p.m.: Love the tradition of high tea in a garden? This is the show for you. The afternoon event includes a tea-inspired cocktail and boxed tea sandwiches with scones. Let our model servers attend to your needs at your seat while you’re treated to a show featuring fall’s best stylish looks. After the show, head into the stores where you can shop while enjoying DJs, raffles and exclusive retail discounts. Tickets are $35.
Fashion on the Rocks at 6 p.m.: For for those who want a walk on the wild side, the evening show channels the vibe of a nightclub with a live DJ and a few surprises. Guests will be treated to seat-side service from the model waiters. Offerings include a signature cocktail or champagne, a bite box and a passport to the hottest after-parties. Our DJs will take you from the runways into the store where champagne, light bites and exclusive retail discounts await. Tickets are $50.
Tickets to both fashion shows can be purchased online at or for cash-only at the Santana Row concierge office.

Mommy & Me and Daddies, Too: “Family Safety”
Tuesday, Sept. 9, a.m. to noon
Learn all about family safety from professionals and meet the everyday heroes who keep us safe! Enjoy live entertainment, arts and crafts, face painting, music, balloon art, story time and more.
Details: 10 a.m. to noon at Park Valencia. Mommy & Me is a free kids’ club held on the second Tuesday of every month from May through December. For more information, call 408.551.4611 or visit

Yoga on The Row
Sunday, September 14, 9 a.m.
Yogis take over Santana Row Boulevard for the second annual Yoga on The Row! The free class will take place at Santana Row Park, and participants are invited to line both sides of the main boulevard from Olsen Drive to Olin Avenue, an area closed off to traffic. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. and class begins at 9:00 a.m. Special brunch and shopping offers will be distributed to all attendees. For more information, contact Lululemon Santana Row at 408.557.8721.

Round Trip Shuttle to Levi’s Stadium
For San Francisco 49ers home games
Service begins Sunday, Sept. 14
Take the stress out of driving to the new stadium and finding a parking spot on game days by taking the Santana Row shuttle! Make your individual or group reservation online and you’ll be set to go.
Buses leave Santana Row approximately 90 minutes before game time and depart the stadium one hour after the game ends. Your ticket includes free parking at Santana Row, the round trip to and from the game and Santana Row shopping and dining specials at select restaurants, such as bottomless mimosas, prix fixe menus, private tailgate pre-parties with cash bar and extended happy hour offerings.
Ticket per person is $50.

Santana Row Pick-Up Location:
When you arrive at Santana Row, park your vehicle in the designated, secured parking lot on Winchester Boulevard in the former Century 21 Theatre parking lot.  Then walk across Winchester Blvd on to Olsen Drive and registration and bus will be waiting to load in front of CineArts Movie Theatre. The bus will depart at the scheduled time, and will not wait for passengers.

Levi’s Stadium Drop-Off Location:
The bus will park at the official shuttle drop-off location at Levi’s Stadium. One hour after the conclusion of the game, the bus will depart from the same location. All passengers not on bus at the specified departure time will not receive transportation back to Santana Row.
For more information, contact the Santana Row Concierge office: 408.551.4611.

Mehregan Persian Fall Festival in Park Valencia
Tuesday, September 23, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Santana Row celebrates the arrival of autumn with Mehregan, a Persian fall festival that has been celebrated for more than 3,000 years. In partnership with the Iranian Federated Women’s Club, the event will feature live music and cultural celebrations marking the first day of fall. Festivities will take place on the stage in Park Valencia. This event is free and open to the 
public. For more information, visit

Diwali  “The Festival of Lights”
Saturday, October 4, noon to 7 p.m., Santana Row Park
Santana Row celebrates Diwali, the ancient Hindu festival celebrated every year on Oct. 4 that
signifies the victory of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, good over evil and hope over despair. Presented by WomenNow, Diwali Utsav 2014 will be the first Diwali carnival at Santana Row and will feature Indian cultural
activities for all ages. The entertainment program includes chef demonstrations by Amber India, Bollywood dances and dramatic performances depicting the significance of Diwali. Festivities will take place in Santana Row Park. This event is free and open to the public. For more 
information, visit

Mommy & Me and Daddies, Too: “Halloween Family Fun Fest!”
Tuesday, Oct. 28, 10 a.m. to noon
Trick-or-treat around The Row and enjoy pumpkin decorating, live musical performances and more during this popular fall event for children.
Details: 10 a.m. to noon at Park Valencia. Mommy & Me is a free kids’ club held on the second Tuesday of every month from May through December. For more information, call 408.551.4611 or visit

Twitter Promotion @SantanaRow invites Tweets and Instagram tags
For a Chance to Win Gift Cards to Restaurants at The Row
Santana Row’s Twitter campaign and photo contest continues through the @SantanaRow Twitter handle. The contest invites anyone at Santana Row to Tweet or Instagram photos of a new outfit, haircut, meal, event or artsy shots and then tag it with the hash tag #LifeonTheRow. Every month, Santana Row will post an album on Facebook with all of the photos with the #LifeonTheRow hash tag. The person who took the best or most original photo will win a gift card to a Santana Row restaurant.

About Santana Row

Santana Row, a 647,000 square foot mixed-use development in San Jose, CA, is Silicon Valley’s premier destination for shopping, dining, living and working. Santana Row features over 70 shops, 20 restaurants, a boutique hotel and movie theatre. In addition to the dynamic retail & restaurant collection, Santana Row offers 615 luxury rental homes, 219 privately owned condos and 65,000 square feet of Class A office space. Santana Row is a property of (NYSE:FRT), headquartered in Rockville, Maryland. For more information, please visit

About Federal Realty

Federal Realty Investment Trust is an equity real estate investment trust specializing in the ownership, management, development, and redevelopment of high quality retail assets. Federal Realty's portfolio (excluding joint venture properties) contains approximately 20 million square feet located primarily in strategically selected metropolitan markets in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and California. In addition, the Trust has an ownership interest in approximately 1.0 million square feet of retail space through a joint venture in which the Trust has a 30% interest. Our operating portfolio (excluding joint venture properties) was 95.6% leased to national, regional, and local retailers as of March 31, 2014, with no single tenant accounting for more than approximately 3.3% of annualized base rent. Federal Realty has paid quarterly dividends to its shareholders continuously since its founding in 1962, and has increased its dividend rate for 46 consecutive years, the longest record in the REIT industry. Federal Realty is an S&P MidCap 400 company and its shares are traded on the NYSE under the symbol FRT.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Saturday Stats: San Jose is the #1 Place for STEM Graduates!

Today we have another one of those Saturday Stats to really be proud of. According to NerdWallet--which is based in SF by the way--San Jose is the #1 place in the United States for STEM jobs (Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math).

It wasn't even close. They looked at three main criteria: the mean wage for STEM occupations (25%), the size of the STEM industry (50%), and the median gross rent (25%). Despite coming in the highest with the median gross rent (a big negative), San Jose's $111,745 mean wage and the fact that 17% of all jobs in San Jose are related to STEM gave us a towering lead in the overall score.

The data is below, and is well worth taking a look. Only three other areas in California made the cut. San Francisco was #5, Sacramento was #15, and San Diego was #20.

Source: NerdWallet, Thanks to Christopher Rein for sending this in.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Cellist Zoë Keating Headlines REBOOT:music Live Concert @ The Tech

7:30 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. 21+ only
Saturday, August 2, 2014
Lower Level of The Tech Museum of Innovation
$15 early bird presale / $13 for members
$20 presale / $25 at the door
Buy tickets

Zoë Keating, the well-known Canadian cellist and composer, will headline The Tech Museum of Innovation’s REBOOT:music LIVE! concert on Saturday, August 2. Keating will be joined by four other electronic musicians — Eskmo, Moldover, Nonagon and Rich DDT — as part of the closing event for The Tech’s exhibition, REBOOT:music, which ends its run August 17.

Keating’s mix of acoustic and electronic music — she plays the cello and a foot-operated laptop device — has captivated audiences worldwide. The artist’s DIY musical projects have attracted a wide following on social media despite the fact that she isn’t affiliated with any record label. View video of one of Keating's performances here.

The concert will also feature Eskmo, a Los Angeles electronic music producer; Moldover, known to the YouTube music community as “The Godfather of Controllerism”; Nonagon, performing alongside Colin Evoy Sebestyen with a combination of traditional and electronic music, mesmerizing designs and effects; and Rich DDT, who will play his ControlliTAR.

Before the concert, the artists will take part in a panel discussion about their inspirations and the technologies they use.

REBOOT:music Live! is the closing event for The Tech’s digital music exhibition, REBOOT:music. The exhibition features 16 installations by renowned artists that allow visitors to collaborate and explore the boundaries of music making. It is open through August 17.

Contributing Curators: LoveTech

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Good Samaritan Hospital Spending $33 Million to Expand Their Emergency Rooms

Good Samaritan Hospital in South San Jose is expanding its emergency operations from 7,857 SQFT to 22,653 SQFT. This $33 Million project will be done in the existing space. Good Sam will be relocating other departments and knocking down walls in order to make room for the larger ER, allowing the hospital to increase the number of patients they see from 54,000 to 75,000.

As part of the expansion they will have a new kid-friendly waiting area, a new ambulance drop-off area and a CT scanner dedicated to the ER. Construction will start next year and should wrap up by 2017.

Source: SVBJ

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Wednesday Wishlist: Clever Street Art

My wife Sarah came across the following photos of really clever street art. These bring in natural elements of the surrounding area into the art itself. I think we could easily use some of these ideas in San Jose. Not only do they look super cool, but they encourage people walking by to snap photos and share with friends. There are more images at the source link below.

Source: The Meta Picture

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Think Bigger San Jose: Are Lawyers the Key to Lowering Office Vacancy in Downtown?

I'm a big fan of "Think Bigger San Jose," a great blog with a mission very similar to this one. In Mark's latest post, he explores the potential for lawyers and legal services to help reduce the office vacancy rate in Downtown San Jose. The two big drivers for this are the new Family Justice Center that is currently under construction (render below) and the new US Patent Office in City Hall. It's a great post, go check it out over here.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Scope of the Santa Clara Mixed-Use Project Across from 49ers Stadium Increases by $1.5 Billion

Across the street from the 99% complete Levi's Stadium is going to be perhaps the largest development project in the history of Silicon Valley. The "City Place Santa Clara" project has expanded and is now expected to cover 8 million SQFT (The size of five Santana Rows) and cost $6.5 billion.

This epic project would include 1 million SQFT of retail (with 2-3 department stores), 30 restaurants, a 350-room hotel, 380 apartment units, a movie theater, a comedy or jazz club, a bowling alley, a performance center, a "European-style" arts district, parks, plazas, and several million SQFT of offices. For all intents and purposes, this project would become downtown Santa Clara.

This would obviously not be built out all at once. City Place would require at least seven phases of construction and take 10-20 years to fully build out. Construction is expected to start in early 2016 and the first phase would open in 2019, helping Santa Clara secure future Super Bowls.

So now the question is how will this impact San Jose, whose border is not even half-a-mile away from this project? Will this create synergy and bring increased regional attention to the South Bay or is this just more competition? The last thing we would want is a repeat of what happened with Downtown San Jose when Valley Fair came around.

I am going to stay optimistic and say that this is a good thing and can co-exist with all of the projects happening right now across San Jose. Given the increasing residential activity and urbanization Downtown, I think it will be safe. Despite the size of this Santa Clara project, it is still dwarfed by the amenities and scale currently in Downtown San Jose, not to mention what is in the pipeline for the next five years.

What do you guys think?

Source: The Merc

Sunday, July 20, 2014

¡VivaFest! Announces 2014 Festival Season

Iconic artists, music and dance conference and free events;
New speaker’s series, online exhibition, Dia de los Muertos

San Jose, California, July 8, 2014 – The organizers of ¡VivaFest!, San Jose’s Latino destination festival, announced today its 2014 fall schedule. Appearances by Academy Award and Grammy Award winners Rita Moreno and Paul Williams and Grammy award nominees Jose Hernandez and Mariachi Sol de Mexico highlight the 2014 schedule which includes the festival’s annual mariachi music workshops, Gala mariachi concert, outdoor festivals, a speaker’s series and concert recitals in the folk music of Mexico. Many events, including the Gala mariachi concert, are free to the public this year.


San Jose’s annual mariachi and ballet folklorico conference kicks off July 25, 2014 with an expanded schedule of mariachi and ballet folklorico workshops followed by a vibrant season of music and cultural events in San Jose. Mariachi workshops will be led by Jose Hernandez of Mariachi Sol de Mexico and dance workshops will be led by the award winning dance master artist Maria Luisa Colmenarez, founder of Danzantes Unidos, and master artist Jose Tena, Founder and Artistic Director of Ballet Folklorico de la Tierra del Encanto, and dance faculty at New Mexico State University and the Harvard University summer arts program. New this year to the work shop schedule is a class on the basics of coding for musicians offered by software engineer and master artist Juventino Mejia and a workshop on Jalisco harp offered by master artist William Faulkner.

July 30 - VivaFest presents “An Evening of the Music of Angels,” a concert recital by Jalisco Harp Maestro William Faulkner at the San Jose Women’s Club.

August 1, the festival annual mariachi gala event presents with Symphony Silicon Valley traditional icons Mariachi Sol de Mexico headlining “Songs in the Key of Mexico,” a free concert at San Jose State University.

September 14 the festival and Mundo Fox celebrate Mexican Independence Day at Discovery Meadow with a free day of family activities, music, food and fun.

September 16 VivaFest opens an online exhibition of “The Artistic Mestizaje,” an outdoor mural artwork by Carlos Perez in a project co-presented with the Google Art Institute. The exhibition will feature digital views of the mural taken by Google’s street team and an in-depth examination of the artistic heritage depicted by the artist in a panel discussion on the modern convergence of culture with the artist and curatorial staff from Google.

September 26, VivaFest and the Commonwealth Club of California present a conversation with Academy Award, Golden Globe and Grammy Award winner Paul Williams, at the Mayer Theatre in Santa Clara. Currently President of ASCAP, Williams’ recent work includes major Latino creative projects with Guillermo del Toro and a new book, “Gratitude and Trust: Six Affirmations That Will Change Your Life.”

October 17, 2014, VivaFest and the Commonwealth Club present a conversation with Latina icon Rita Moreno. Moreno is one of the few artists to win a Grammy, Oscar, Tony and Emmy awards and the National Medal of Honor. She continues to maintain a busy performing schedule and is the author of the recently published book, “Rita Moreno, A Memoir.“

On October 25, ¡VivaFest! and Milagro Marketing co-present Dia San Jose, three days of cultural events celebrating Mexico’s Dia de Los Muertos - a traditional celebration of heritage, family and ancestry at the San Jose City Hall Rotunda and St. James Park.

Artists for Fiestas Patrias and Dia San Jose will be announced later this summer.

# # #

About Mexican Heritage Corporation: 
The mission of the Mexican Heritage Corporation is to celebrate and preserve the rich cultural heritage of Mexico in the U.S. and showcase multicultural arts in the region. MHC achieves its mission by providing heritage arts education programs and presenting VivaFest, Silicon Valley's annual festival of Latino heritage arts and education. Visit us online at

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Silicon Valley Bikes: Passion, Innovation & Politics Since 1880 Exhibit Public Opening

Garden City Wheelmen, photographed at the 1919 San José relay vs. the Sanson Wheelmen of Stockton
(History San Jose Collection)

Starts: Sunday, July 27th 2014 at 12:00 pm
Ends: Sunday, July 27th 2014 at 4:30 pm

Location: Arbuckle Gallery at the Pacific Hotel, History Park
Admission: Free
Exhibit Sponsors: Garden City Construction, Wheel Away Cycle Center, Bicycle Express
San Jose Bicycle Club, Los Gatos Bicycle Racing Club Inc., Ampersand Ellipsis Jones LLC, Hellyer Velodrome

Bicycles have provided both affordable transportation and a social outlet around San José for over a century. The growth of clubs and organizations such as the Garden City Wheelmen led to a distinctive cycling culture within the community. Throughout the 20th century, racing events have been held at local velodromes, including the present track at Hellyer Park. Local innovations have enhanced the bicycling industry. In recent decades, community activism efforts, such as support for bike lanes and dedicated paths, have re-introduced cycling as a sustainable transportation method for the future.

Supplemented by objects from private individuals and organizations, Silicon Valley Bikes: Passion, Innovation & Politics Since 1880 will feature selected images and artifacts from History San José’s collection, including the 1842 Lefebvre velocipede, the world’s oldest human-powered vehicle.

Friday, July 18, 2014

The CineBrew Mart 2014 on Sat, July 26th!

SJMADE, Camera Cinemas, and San Jose's own Hermitage Brewing have come together for an amazing event next week. How does all-you-can-watch movies and unlimited beer tastings for $25 sound?

The beer selections should be fantastic. You can sample from from Hermitage (San Jose), Strike (San Jose), Santa Clara Valley Brewing (San Jose), Tied House (Mountain View), Faultline (Sunnyvale), and Uncommon Brewers (Santa Cruz). The tastings run from 1pm to 4pm.

After the tastings you can head over to the theater to watch Transformers, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Hercules, Lucy, Sex Tape, or The Purge. The movies included in your pass run from 11am to 11pm.

Last but definitely not least, SJMADE will be representing local shopping along Paseo de San Antoio and the first floor of Camera 12 from 11am-7pm. Admission is not required to shop and they always have a great selection of everything. This is well worth checking out everyone!

You can buy tickets and get more information at the CineBrew Mart 2014 Website.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Frontier Village Remembered

Frontier Village was slightly before my time, but based on the two videos below I wish I had the opportunity to visit it. This was a 39-acre theme park that operated from 1961 to 1980 in what is now Edenvale Garden Park. There was everything from a roller-coaster, fishing, stunt shows, canoeing, and even a mule-ride (real mules). The first video below features former employees reminiscing about the park. A slideshow starts around 12:30 in the video. The second clip is home video footage from 1979.

To learn more about the park and see tons of photos, visit the "Remembering Frontier Village" website over here.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Summer in St. James Park

I really have to hand it to the Downtown Association for upping their efforts this summer to activate St. James Park. On top of the world cup viewings, Startlight Cinemas, and Music in the Park, several other regular events are being planned. Every Wednesday in July there will be food trucks from 11am to 1:30pm, pick-up soccer games from 11:30am to 1:30pm, and free drop-in yoga from noon to 1pm.

To see the full list of events just head over to

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

July 2014 Downtown Dimension Highlights

Here are my notes from the latest edition of Downtown Dimension:
  • VTA's focus for the year include providing better service to the Convention Center, SAP Center, and Levi's Stadium, as well as securing funding for Phase II of the Silicon Valley BART expansion and rolling out Bus Rapid Transit.
  • 1,200 smart parking meters have been installed throughout Downtown. They now accept credit and debit cards, but the rate has gone up from $1/hour to $2/hour. The extra revenue (after paying for the meters themselves) will be used for Downtown projects.
  • Dozens of homeless are now working side-by-side with Groundwerx staff to learn skills in cleaning and maintenance to help clean Downtown in exchange for food/basic needs vouchers.
  • The Mercury News is officially coming back Downtown, with offices at 4 N. Second.
  • Spanner design consultants are bringing their studyio to 5,500 SQFT on the second floor above Billy Berks's and Mezcal (15 W. San Fernando).
  • Music in the Park is coming back for two shows this year: The English Beat on July 17th at St. James Park and Pete Escovedo on August 21 at Plaza de Cesar Chavez.
  • Based on new regulations approved by the City Council, medical marijuana facilities will be prohibited from remaining Downtown.
To read the full newsletter, click here!

One South and Centerra Close-Ups

Yesterday we had a time lapse of both One South and Centerra. Today we have two close up shots of the construction progress from Shawn Mathew. Both buildings are really coming along nicely. As a reminder, each of these has retail on the ground floor. Centerra has the potential of being an extension of the San Pedro Square Market. One South is a couple blocks away, but should do wonders to help activate Santa Clara Street while also contributing to what is happening in the San Pedro Square area.

Coming up on the horizon, the "sibling" Silvery Towers in the San Pedro Square area right behind the Fallon House and the Post Tower right next to the Gold building. By then we'll also have the new courthouse building, the SJSU student housing tower mentioned yesterday, the Pierce in SoFA, a couple projects around St. James, and who knows how many others. Downtown San Jose is going to look very different 3 years from now.

Monday, July 14, 2014

SJSU Starting Construction on $126M Student Housing Project!

We're going to have another crane in the air before long and this one will be on the SJSU campus. The University has broken ground on a student housing project with 850 beds. The building will be 10 floors, a bit shy of the 15 floor high-rise a stones-throw away.

This project is Phase 2 of the Campus Village project and will cost a cool $126M. Phase 1 was completed in 2005 and added a total of 2,275 beds.

As Nathan Donato-Weinstein mentions in the source link below, this will be a major step in moving SJSU from a commuter school to a more urban university. The building should be done by Summer 2016.

Source: SVBJ

One South and Centerra Time-lapse Photos

Check out the series of photos below taken from City Heights that range from the pre-SPSM days (first photo) to today. If you compare the first and last photos directly, it's amazing what a difference two buildings make.

Huge thanks to David Cheung for sending these in!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Veggielution's Annual Farm Dinner is on Auguest 23rd

Veggielution is an awesome community farm located in the middle of San Jose. Their annual event--Bounty of Heart's Delight--takes place August 23rd. The highlight is a five-course meal featuring local produce and wine, sourced and prepared by chef Affie Mahini from Cafe Pomegranate (great restaurant across from SJSU).

The even also includes live music, a decadent dessert, and even a Barn dance. Have a great time while supporting Veggielution's community programs! Full details of the dinner and ticket sales can be found on the website at (FYI, tickets are 60% tax-deductible).

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Saturday Stats: San Jose Named Best City to Work In!

San Jose continues to get recognition for being a great city to work in. An analysis by Glassdoor ranks the San Jose metro as the #1 place in the country for employee satisfaction. Huge tech salaries and career opportunities were the key contributors to the ranking. This is also the second consecutive year where San Jose is placed at the top of the hill in this study.

San Francisco ranked #2, Washington DC was #3, and New York was miles away at #28. Make sure to watch the short video below put together by Glassdoor.

Sources: GlassdoorSVBJ, Business Insider, Hat tip to Arturo Perez


Friday, July 11, 2014

Music in the Park's 26th Season Opens July 17 with the English Beat and Finish Ticket

SAN JOSE – Music in the Park shows this summer start with a July 17 concert featuring the English Beat, plus up-and-coming alternative rock bands Finish Ticket and The Holdup.

This will be Music in the Park's 26th season, and second season of gated admission.  Tickets purchased in advance cost just $10 for adults and free for children 12-under when accompanied by a supervising adult. Day-of-event price will be $20.  Tickets are now on sale at

The San Jose Downtown Association and Live 105.3 co-host the event from 5:30-9 p.m. at St. James Park starring new wave and ska originals The English Beat.  The Birmingham, England-based band has a 35-year history of success, with hits such as "Mirror in the Bathroom," "Save it for Later," "I Confess," "Stand Down Margaret," "Can’t Get Used To Losing You" and "Tears of a Clown."  Frontman Dave Wakeling retains his relevance as music innovator.  His "Crying Out Loud" album was released earlier in 2014.  Visit
Finish Ticket is fresh off Live 105's BFD and success with their single, "Tranquilize," off their first major-label release, "Tear You Apart."  They will be coming from the East Coast and continuing their national tour right after making a special appearance at Music in the Park.  Visit

Opening the show at 5:30 p.m. is The Holdup, a San Jose band touring clubs in Califiornia this summer.  Their song, "Fool's Gold Pt 1" is available on iTunes.  See

In addition, Music in the Park returns to Plaza de Cesar Chavez for a one of its concerts for the first time in two years.  On Aug. 21, Latin jazz legend Pete Escovedo and his Orchestra make their 19th appearance at Music in the Park, the show starting at 5:30pm. 2013 Grammy Award-winning Latin rock band La Santa Cecilia will open for the 82-year-old Escovedo.

Tickets are also available for $10 for adults and free for children 12-under at

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Sourisseau News: 99 Notre Dame, the Birthplace of the Magnetic Disk Drive

How many people knew that the hard drive was invented in Downtown San Jose about a block away from where the San Pedro Square Market sits today? Check out the great 2-minute video below for a quick history lesson on how IBM developed RAMAC in San Jose, the first system for storing data on magnetic disks.

99 Notre Dame, the birthplace of the magnetic disk drive from WMS media Inc. on Vimeo.

"Today's iPod-toting hipsters have no idea how much they owe to an unremarkable little building in downtown San Jose. It was there, at 99 Notre Dame Ave., nearly 50 years ago, that a small band of IBM engineers developed the RAMAC, the first system for storing data on magnetic disks.

The RAMAC was a big success for IBM. Big Blue made more than 1,000 of the machines over a five-year period, helping establish the company's dominance in mainframe computing. Today, just a few of the original RAMACs are known to exist. One sits outside Hoagland's office on the third floor of the engineering building at Santa Clara University.

The RAMAC's specifications are laughable by today's standards. Some hard drives are as small as a quarter and can store 100 billion bits of data per square inch, 50 million times that of the RAMAC. Hitachi, for example, recently announced the development of "Mikey,'' a one-inch hard drive weighing just 14 grams and able to hold up to 10 gigabytes of data.

The company is also testing a new method of aligning data bits on hard disks vertically instead of horizontally. The new orientation could allow companies to increase hard drive storage capacity tenfold, Munce said. "I think things like micro-drives will change the way we consume digital entertainment,'' he said. Hoagland's goal is to preserve the legacy of the hard-disk innovation in San Jose. As director of the Magnetic Disk Heritage Center, he has been pushing to create a museum at 99 Notre Dame Ave.

He may get his wish. The San Jose City Council recently passed a resolution promising to begin discussions around the idea. And a couple of city council members are due at tonight's ceremony, organized by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. "My dream,'' Hoagland said, "is if you think of the RAMAC, you think of Rey Johnson and you think of 99 Notre Dame Ave."

By Michael Bazeley
San Jose Mercury News

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

How Aggressive Should we be in Tackling Homelessness Downtown?

Today's post is more of an open discussion. One of our readers (hat-tip to Daniel) submitted an article about urban design tools being used to drive away the homeless in cities around the world such as London, Tokyo, and Montreal. These range from spikes in the ground to prevent the homeless from sleeping in certain locations to uncomfortable seats that discourage loitering beyond a quick rest.

After reading the article (link below), please let us know what you think. Are these cruel or do we need to move in this direction to reduce homelessness Downtown?

Source: The Atlantic

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Clandestine Brewing Opens in San Jose

Another local brewery has opened up shop! Clandestine Brewing is located near the The Plant shopping center south of Downtown San Jose. It is also not very far away from Hermitage or Strike (beer district anyone?).

It looks like they have a great selection of craft beers that I am anxious to try out. You can get a preview below, but I would recommend checking out their website for all of the deets. Their address is 1805 Little Orchard St. Suite 124.

Source: I Heart San Jose

Monday, July 7, 2014

Post Tower Renders!

Let's start the week off right with a sneak peak at what a future residential tower in Downtown San Jose could look like. This one is at the corner of Post Street and San Pedro, tucked away near the gold building.

I have to say that I really like the design. It is more unique than most of the high-rises in Downtown right now and has some modern character to it. What do you guys think?

Source: StudioCurrent, Big thanks to Shawn Mathew for sending this in!