Monday, August 14, 2017

North 4th Street Student Tower Proposal

There seems to be no shortage of exciting news related to Downtown San Jose these days! The newest development project proposal is a 26-story student housing tower at the intersection of N. 4th Street and St. John. This location is 3 blocks away from SJSU and only 1 block away from St. James Park.

At 285 feet, it would be the exact same height as the San Jose City Hall, the second tallest building in San Jose (The 88 is taller by one foot). If the height alone wasn't enough to make it stand out, the proposed design with guarantee it. If approved, the N. 4th Street tower would have the most colorful and eclectic design of any Downtown tower to date. It features almost Tetris-like cutouts both horizontally and vertically, multi-colored glass, and even trees on the roof.

The ground floor has a respectable 8,409 SQFT of retail, a 2,713 SQFT leasing office, bike parking, and retail & guest parking. Above that is four levels of parking for students followed by 21 levels of student housing with 400 units (enough for about 900 students). If that weren't enough, there is a rooftop patio and amenity area--again with trees!

There are some negatives with the design. First, the tower will be adjacent to many single family homes along 5th Street, and those homeowners are likely not thrilled to have a student housing tower as a next-door neighbor. Also, there are a ton of parking spaces for a tower designed for students--especially since BART, Light rail, Bus Rapid Transit, and protected bike lanes are all within a 5 minute walk. In combination with the advent of autonomous cars, this will be very expensive wasted space five years from now and does not promote good urban design. At minimum they should plan on building the parking floors in such a way where they can be repurposed in the future.

Overall, I have to say this is pretty exciting and would markedly improve our skyline as well as add foot-traffic to an undeserved part of Downtown.

Huge thanks to fellow blogger Kimberly Vacca for providing high-res images from the proposal! Also a shout out to Robertee from the San Jose Development Forum for being the first to post about the permit. Click on the images below to enlarge.













2 comments:

  1. That St. John street view is terrible. White tiled wall, yuck. Should switch it with the left elevation.

    Thanks to Kimberly! Great work!

    ReplyDelete