Sunday, March 7, 2010

March 2010 Downtown Dimension Highlights

Here are my notes from the latest edition of Downtown Dimension (warning, this is going to be long because there is a lot of great content this month!):
  • Convention Center Expansion
    • $30 million in RDA funds were approved for the expansion, which will have a total cost of $130 million.
    • Completion is expected in less than 19 months.
    • Plans include 35,000 sqft of ballroom space with 30ft high ceilings, 25,000 sqft of new meeting room space, new food prep areas, new furniture and fixtures, restroom improvements, sidewalk improvements.
    • The hideous former MLK Library will be torn down (nice!)
  • Other RDA Projects moving forward:
    • $4 million to complete the Civic Auditorium renovation.
    • $3 million for the North San Pedro housing development.
    • $30 million in land acquisitions for a new baseball park south of Diridon Station!
  • Goals from the city's 2010-2015 economic strategy for downtown:
    • Fill up office space.
    • Expand the convention center.
    • Complete the San Pedro Square Urban Market.
    • Support more events.
    • Attract more start-up companies and create a sense of community among downtown entrepreneurs (damn good idea).
    • More live music aimed at broader audiences.
    • Continue to invest in SoFA (keep it up, doing a great job so far)
    • Continue partnering with 1stAct.
    • Strengthen pedestrian and bike connections to Guadalupe River Park and encourage "bold next-stage evolution of the park."
    • Attract businesses that bring "street-level vibrancy" both day and night
  • Zanatto's is stepping up its game to be more competitive with The Market. They'll offer wine dinners and expand inside seating for lunch and dinner customers.
  • Tres Gringos is expanding to SJC (FYI, their fish tacos are amazing). Also coming to the new terminal is Sonoma Chicken Coop and Original Joe's!
  • CJ's Cafe & Catering is now offering breakfast and lunch at 303 Almaden Blvd.
  • Downtown San Jose's Fourth (seriously, fourth??) Subway is oping on the ground floor of Three Sixty Residences (the high-rise condo building in SoFA).
  • As reported here several months ago, the Montgomery Hotel will be re-branded as a Four Points by Sheraton Hotel. This will be the First Starwood Hotel in San Jose. Starwood also includes Sheraton, Westin, W Hotels, Luxury Collection, and St. Regis brands.
  • Pizza Chicago can now roll-up most of it's walls for an open air dining experience (think The Counter at Santana Row)
  • Many events coming this summer:
    • Dwontwon Farmer's Market at San Pedro Square, Fridays, 10am-2pm starting May 7th.
    • Downtown Doors Installation also May 7th.
    • Dine Downtown is Back!: Jun 2-12, with a City Bites sampler event on Jun 2nd (awesome, can't wait!!!)
    • Music in the Park: Thursday nights starting Jun 3rd.
    • Starlight Cinema: Wednesday nights starting Jun 9th.
    • South First Fridays: May 7th, Aug 6th, Sep 3rd
    • Sub Zero's uber South First Friday: Jun 4th!
    • Left Coast Live - Jun 21-26
    • Jazz Festival - Aug 13-15
    • Tapestry in Talent - Sep 4-6
    • ZeroOne - Sep 16-19
    • Mariachi Festival - Sep 19-26
To read the full newsletter, click here!


  1. Joshua,

    I'll give you a pointer and let you make a blog posting of it. The Facebook group for the San Pedro Square Market which you can find by following the link from only has a little bit of information. On the wall they just pointed a small video on the market. That video didn't have much but once you're on youtube for that video, there are other videos that are more informative.

    Also if you go to the discussions tab within Facebook, there is only 1 discussion but Mike Maida does add stuff when somebody asks a question. His last posting which is over a month ago says:

    "We have letters of intent from

    A ravioli maker,Gyro's, ice cream, flowers, chocolate, Sausage, Spring rolls, and the list goes on and on.

    Once we have leases in place with tenants we will be releasing the names."

  2. Thanks again Mark! I'm actually meeting with Steve from the Market this weekend, so hopefully I'll be able to get some real names =).

    The best video I've found is this one over here: Tomorrow I'll try to do a post with that video embedded.