Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Apple is building a flagship two-story store in San Jose

San Jose is finally getting an Apple store worthy of being in Silicon Valley! As part of Westfield's $1.1 billion expansion, Apple will move to a two-story location facing the new Santana Row-style outdoor dining district. In the image below I marked where I think it could go. Based on the description it could be anywhere on the walkway closest to Stevens Creek Boulevard and it will feature both indoor and outdoor areas.

Westfield is calling this out as an "anchor" tenant for their expansion which will have over 150 new retail stores, multiple new restaurants, and a Bloomingdale's department store. Apple tends to pull out all the stops for their flagship locations and I can't see what they come up with for San Jose.

Source: SVBJ

Thursday, May 23, 2019

San Jose holds 3rd place in US solar rankings

We just hit the highest level of atmospheric carbon dioxide in 3 million years. Fortunately, some cities are doing their part to reduce CO2 as much as possible. San Jose has the highest per-capita electric vehicle adoption of any major city in the United States and now we are 3rd when it comes to per capita solar adoption.

Only sunny San Diego and Honolulu (where electricity rates are insane) are ranked higher than San Jose. San Francisco came in 20th place.

As the prices of solar systems drop and electricity becomes more expensive, hopefully adoption of clean energy will continue to rise.

Source: SJ Economy Blog

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Symphony Silicon Valley presents Beethoven’s Ninth with Tatsuya Shimono conducting. Season Closing Performance!

WHO: Symphony Silicon Valley presents
WHAT: Beethoven’s Ninth
WHEN: Saturday, June 1, 2019 at 8:00pm
Sunday, June 2, 2019 at 2:30pm
WHERE: The California Theatre, 345 South First Street in downtown San Jose, 95113.
Easy, inexpensive parking is just one block away at San Jose City Garage on San Carlos Street with entrances on 2nd and 3rd Streets.

WHY: Beethoven's Ninth is the unquestioned champion of the concert hall, a work that sums up the Classical age, looks forward to what would follow, and has come to represent courage, hope, and triumph around the world. Every December, innumerable Ninths are performed throughout Maestro Shimono's homeland to mark the turn of the year. SSV last played it to packed houses for the Symphony's 10th anniversary, This June it will be introduced by one of Dvořák's most joyful short works, festive and deeply felt.

PRICES: $50 - $94  
BOX OFFICE: 408.286.2600 or www.symphonysiliconvalley.org
Or visit the Box Office between 10am and 5pm, Monday through Friday at 325 South First Street in downtown San Jose, between San Carlos and San Salvador Streets just one-half block from the California Theatre. 

Antonín Dvořák: Te Deum, Op.103
Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125

Conductor: Tatsuya Shimono
Soloist(s): Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale

About Tatsuya Shimono
Born in Kagoshima in 1969, Tatsuya Shimono cemented his international reputation as a conductor by winning First Prize at the 47th Besançon International Competition in 2001. Since then he has guest conducted major orchestras in Japan and abroad. He received great acclaim for his debuts in subscription concerts with the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia and the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra in 2009, and then in March 2010, made his debut with the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra.

About Symphony Silicon Valley
The Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale, directed by Maestra Elena Sharkova, has become known for its eclectic mix of vibrant programs. It most often performs at the California Theatre, where it accompanies the Symphony in performing major works. The Chorale also performs pieces from the classical and popular repertoire on its own and with guest soloists. Each December the Chorale presents a holiday concert, Carols in the California, that combines traditional and unusual holiday music with a refreshing major work and audience participation.
More: http://www.symphonysiliconvalley.org/musicians.php?pagecontID=66&MusID=88

Photo courtesy of Symphony Silicon Valley

About Symphony Silicon Valley:  Founded in 2002, Symphony Silicon Valley has progressed from daring idea to exciting reality, rapidly becoming the greater South Bay's premiere orchestra and a notable community success story. 
As the Mercury News wrote:
Symphony Silicon Valley began as a phoenix orchestra, rising from the ashes of the old San Jose Symphony.  But ...the "new" orchestra…is becoming a fixture on the scene, with its own way of doing things.  One night it may play Ellington, the next Mozart…carving out its own identity with numerous guest conductors, some unique repertory and a celebrated new home at the California.
The Symphony's artists, nationally recruited, locally resident, with an average performance tenure in San Jose of over 20 years, are recognized as among the best in the greater Bay Area.  Led by an exciting roster of distinguished guest conductors on the European model, the Symphony is an anchor tenant of San Jose's magnificently restored downtown California Theatre, one of Northern California's most outstanding music halls.  There, audiences and critics alike greet its concerts with enthusiasm.

Symphony Silicon Valley is setting an example of an innovative business model in the arts -- market driven and financially conservative, with low overhead and the flexibility to match its programming to its support base.  It earns 60% of its revenue each year – an extraordinarily high proportion for a symphony of its size.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Downtown San Jose Safeway to close

Unfortunately, The Safeway market in Downtown San Jose will close by June 14th. This was one of the first "Market" concepts that Safeway built and is the most central grocery store in Downtown San Jose. Grocery Outlet, Trader Joe's, and Whole Foods are all in the periphery of Downtown San Jose and are difficult to walk to.

One of the key reasons appears to be a situation with free parking. The parking structure beneath The 88 was owned by the former Redevelopment Agency and the city offered free 2 hour parking for Safeway patrons. Once the lot was sold per legal requirements of the now defunct agency, the city was no longer able to offer free parking and it put the Safeway at a significant disadvantage.

If you dig a little deeper, I don't think the real reason is parking but that there are still not enough people living in Downtown San Jose. Many towers are under construction and once they are built hopefully we will be able to support a Safeway-sized market with or without free parking.

It will be interesting to see how long the space takes to get leased and what will replace the Safeway. It could be an opportunity for something even better, we'll see.

Source: SVBJ

Monday, May 20, 2019

Santana Row is welcoming Vince, Brandy Melville, TravisMathew, Sauced BBQ & Spirits, and Cosecha

Santana Row has just announced five new retail and restaurant offerings. They continue to attract unique stores that are not easy to find and in some cases are the first location in Silicon Valley.


Vince is a luxury brand offering shoes, handbags, and home items. The 2,378 SQFT shop will be next to the newly expanded Lululemon store. The only other Bay Area stores are in Palo Alto and San Francisco.

Brandy Melville is a tendy women's apperel line from Italy. The 3,122 SQFT store will open in the summer.

TravisMathew is a lifestyle apparel company for men. The 1,911 SQFT store has a ping pong table and classic arcades (!!!), so it will likely be my new favorite Santana Row spot. This will be the very first location in Northern California.


Sauced BBQ & Spirits is a new Southern-inspired restaurant featuring BBQ and numerous beer, wine, and whiskey options. It will open in the parkside location next to Maggiano's this fall.

Cosecha is a revamped version of Consuelo's with the same ownership and an 800 SQFT expansion. They will offer modern Mexican dishes with local ingredients.

It has been announced before, but is worth mentioning again that Blue Bottle Coffee is opening soon in the former Pinkberry location in the middle of the park and Meso Modern Mediterranean will be the new restaurant in Santana Row's new capstone building next to CineArts movie theater.

For the full press release, see below.

Santana Row Continues to Draw Cutting-Edge Eateries and Stylish Shops
San Jose’s most popular neighborhood welcomes Vince, Brandy Melville, TravisMathew, Sauced BBQ & Spirits & Cosecha to its vibrant merchant roster

SAN JOSE, Calif.—May 14, 2019—Santana Row continues to attract top brands & eateries, making it the most sought-after dining and shopping scene in the Bay Area.  As Santana Row prepares to welcome Splunk in the newly developed 700 Santana Row office campus, a new generation of retail and restaurants are opening to meet the standards of Silicon Valley tastemakers.

Santana Row today announced the signing of VinceBrandy MelvilleTravisMathew and Sauced BBQ & Spirits; plus a renovation and expansion of Cosecha, formerly Consuelo’s at Santana Row. Brandy Melville, Vince and TravisMathew will offer on-trend clothing and accessories, while BBQ darling Sauced, and the under-construction eatery Cosecha will offer foodies two new vibrant restaurants; adding to the already incredibly dynamic dining scene.

Luxury retail brand Vince will bring California-inspired, everyday essentials to Santana Row in summer 2019. Vince encompasses a modern, timeless aesthetic and effortless sophistication, best known for creating elevated yet understated pieces for every day. Known for its range of luxury goods, Vince offers women’s and men’s ready-to-wear, shoes, handbags, and home fit for a global lifestyle. The collections are inspired by the brand’s California origins and embody a feeling of effortless style. Vince will debut in a 2,378 sf shop located next to the newly expanded lululemon.

Popular boutique Brandy Melville, the women’s apparel line from Italy known for its trend-setting styles with a beachy, comfortable vibe will open a 3,112-square-foot space in summer of 2019 at Santana Row. This Instagram favorite has a cult following known for its rich fabrics, fine quality and excellent prices.

Additionally, premier men’s apparel brand TravisMathew, known for leading the way in quality and lifestyle apparel with styles for both work and play, will open its first Northern California store at Santana Row.  You can find classic arcade style gaming consoles and ping pong tables in the 1,911 sf space. With a casual SoCal vibe and clothing that effortlessly transitions from the course to daily life, TravisMathew has established itself as a leading innovative brand in the sportswear world. The Santana Row location will carry their exclusive California capsule product and will open in fall 2019.

In addition to Vince, Brandy Melville and TravisMathew; Sauced BBQ & Spirits will be making its debut this year, moving into the parkside location next door to the popular Maggiano’s Little Italy. Sauced is a Southern-inspired restaurant concept influenced by modern flavor and design, founded by two cousins with a passion to bring authentic, Southern BBQ to Northern California. Besides featuring multiple Southern styles of barbecue, the restaurant touts numerous beer, wine and whiskey options. You can expect outdoor patio seating at this new, hip foodie experience opening in fall 2019.

In addition to the best-in-class operators vying for space in Santana Row, existing merchants are flourishing with opportunity to evolve and progress in response to consumer demands. Mexican bistro Consuelo’s is undergoing a major revamp and 800-square-foot expansion, re-opening as Cosecha under the same ownership. Cosecha will offer modern-inspired Mexican cuisine sourced with local ingredients in its diverse menu of wood grill plates, traditional fare and beyond. The announcement of these new restaurant openings and renovations comes on the heel of Barry’s Bootcamp, Meso Modern Mediterranean and Blue Bottle Coffee lease signings at Santana Row.

"Being on the cutting edge of mixed-use trends is in our DNA at Santana Row. We are ever-evolving and looking for ways to make room for the best-in-class brands that our customers are talking about, purchasing from and following. It is important to our strategic vision to recapture core retail spaces when sales dip and our consumers shift focus. Our connectivity to our on-site community and the 13 million annual visitors allows us a unique vantage point that separates us from big box malls and gets our customers offline and into our businesses” said Jeff Kreshek, Senior Vice President West Coast Leasing at Federal Realty Investment Trust.

With 834 homes, 50 shops, 30 restaurants, a CinéArts movie theatre, the boutique Hotel Valencia and added new developments like 700 Santana Row, Santana Row continues to evolve and thrive since its opening in 2002.

About Federal Realty
Federal Realty is a recognized leader in the ownership, operation and redevelopment of high-quality retail based properties located primarily in major coastal markets from Washington, D.C. to Boston as well as San Francisco and Los Angeles. Founded in 1962, our mission is to deliver long term, sustainable growth through investing in densely populated, affluent communities where retail demand exceeds supply. Our expertise includes creating urban, mixed-use neighborhoods like Santana Row in San Jose, California, Pike & Rose in North Bethesda, Maryland and Assembly Row in Somerville, Massachusetts. These unique and vibrant environments that combine shopping, dining, living and working provide a destination experience valued by their respective communities. Federal Realty's 98 properties include over 2,800 tenants, in approximately 23 million square feet, and over 1,800 residential units. 

Federal Realty has paid quarterly dividends to its shareholders continuously since its founding in 1962, and has increased its dividend rate for 49 consecutive years, the longest record in the REIT industry. Federal Realty shares are traded on the NYSE under the symbol FRT. For additional information about Federal Realty and its properties, visit www.FederalRealty.com.
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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

San Jose ranked 2nd best small business growth city

For the 2nd year in a row, San Jose was ranked as the 2nd best metro for small businesses in the US.  The analysis was based on the financials of almost 30,000 companies. San Jose also had the highest average credit score of any city.

Miami took the crown for being the #1 growth city for small business, while San Francisco came in 3rd place. Below is the full list.

Top 25 Cities for Small Business 2019

  1. Miami (No. 3)
  2. San Jose, CA (No. 2)
  3. San Francisco (No. 4)
  4. New York (No. 1)
  5. San Diego (No. 9)
  6. Los Angeles (No. 5)
  7. Boston (unranked)
  8. Sacramento, CA (No. 10)
  9. Baltimore (No. 16)
  10. Washington, DC (No. 7)
  11. Philadelphia (No. 22)
  12. Chicago (No. 12)
  13. Seattle (No. 14)
  14. Riverside, CA (No. 6)
  15. Minneapolis (unranked)
  16. Phoenix (No. 11)
  17. Las Vegas (No. 18)
  18. Charlotte, NC (No. 24)
  19. Nashville, TN (unranked)
  20. Raleigh, NC (unranked)
  21. Detroit (No. 20)
  22. Oklahoma City (unranked)
  23. Houston (No. 21)
  24. Cleveland (unranked)
  25. Pittsburgh (unranked)
Source: SJ Economy Blog

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Music in the Park 2019

With the recent weather it is hard to believe summer is just around the corner. This year's lineup for Music in the Park includes oldies from the The Delfonics, Latin rock/funk/hip-hop from Ozomatli, pop from Cuco, and reggae from J Boog. Early bird tickets start at only $10 and VIP tickets with private seating, a drink ticket, and nicer restrooms go for $35. You can get your tickets right over here.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Roku snaps up another 162,557 SQFT of San Jose office space

Roku, the popular video streaming tech company, is moving their headquarters from Los Gatos to a much larger space in San Jose's Coleman Highline. Currently they sublease 160,000 SQFT from Netflix, one of their initial investors. The new campus in San Jose will clock in at 735,000 SQFT across five buildings.

Roku has brown from 400 people at the end of 2015 to 1,111 employees just three years later at the end of 2018. That will make the company one of the top employers in the Downtown or Airport areas. Getting the HQ for another fast growing tech company represents a big win for San Jose.

The Coleman Highline is also planning further expansion to a grand total of 1.5 million SQFT along with two new hotels.

Source: SVBJ

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Flicks and Grooves at History Park

History San José invites you to enjoy great movies and music under the stars during the Flicks & Grooves outdoor cinema and concert series in History Park. This year's outdoor cinema line up will showcase the quirky genius of director Wes Anderson the second Friday of each month. The Flicks & Grooves concert slate features an eclectic array of live bands to enliven your Friday nights on the Fire House Green. No movie or concert is complete without great food and beverage offerings. Each Flicks & Grooves event will feature a variety of local brews, wine, and food vendors. And of course, popcorn and local ice cream from O’Brien’s Ice Cream Parlor!

Cinema Dates
Friday, May 10th 7:30 pm (Moonrise Kingdom)Friday, June 14th 7:30 pm (Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou) 
Friday, July 12th 7:30 pm (Rushmore)Friday, August 9th 7:30 pm (The Grand Budapest Hotel)
Friday, September 13th 7:30 pm (The Royal Tenenbaums)
Friday, October 11th 7:30 pm (Fantastic Mr. Fox) 

Concert Dates
Friday, May 31st at 7:30 pm (Kiva Uhuru + Noop & Neens)
Friday, June 28th at 7:30 pm (Steely Nash + Q&A)
Friday, July 26th at 7:30 pm (Aki Kumar + DJs Albert Jenkins and Basura and Guests)
Friday, August 30 at 7:30 pm (Le Vice + Ian Santillano and the Housewarmers)
Friday, September 27 at 7:30 pm (Valley Wolf + Deseos Primitivos)
Friday, October 25 at 7:30 pm (Gene Washington and The Sweet Sounds + Rhythm  and Folk)

Outdoor Cinema
This year's outdoor cinema line up will showcase the quirky genius of director Wes Anderson the second Friday of each month. The beautiful and relaxing Fire House Green inside History Park serves as a perfect backdrop for the unorthodox filmmaker's cinematic gems including Rushmore, The Life Aquatic, and The Royal Tenenbaums to name just a few. Oscar-nominated Wes Anderson has created films that are bonafide cult classics resonating with audiences of all ages.

Outdoor Concerts

History Park will also be a destination for live music the last Friday of each month. The Flicks & Grooves concert slate features an eclectic array of live bands to enliven your Friday nights on the Fire House Green. The San Jose Jazz Boombox Stage will host hot acts curated by Needle to the Groove Records and Quynh Mai. Confirmed acts include Neo-Soul songstress Kiva Uhuru (May 31), Hip Pop outfit Steely Nash (June 28), the neo-Jazz stylings of Le Vice (Aug 30), Cumbia/Latin Rock crooner Valley Wolf (September 27) and many more acts to be announced.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

May 2019 Downtown Dimension Highlights

The latest addition of Downtown Dimension highlights new Downtown development projects (including a 3.4 million SQFT three-tower project at CityView Plaza). Little Italy is finally getting their museum and cultural center, and as an added bonus there will be a speakeasy in the basement. Check out the full newsletter using the link below:

The MAY 2019 Downtown Dimension is now available at:

In this edition:
  • What can the City and development community do to get more cranes in the sky?  Cranes, of course, symbolize construction of taller office and residential buildings.  Downtown San Jose has plenty of high-rise proposals, but getting them started at ground level is another matter.  Dimension presents the more popular ideas.
  • A decade into its renewal, Little Italy continues to grow and prosper. Here's what's ahead in the near future for Little Italy.
  • Downtown properties continue to change ownership.
  • Businesses continue to grow, looking for more space for additional employees.
  • SJDA's 100 days of events starts May 3 with the Farmers' Market.  In June, the Delfonics bring their smash hits of the '70s to Music in the Park.

Also for your information:
  • Live and Local SJ supports live music in the center city.
  • Traffic alerts keep up with lane and road closures and openings.
  • Maps of downtown commercial property availability and development proposals.
  • Boom City: SJDA's summary of new downtown building proposals and west side acquisitions, continues to be updated almost monthly...
Downtown Dimension is a leading source for information about downtown San Jose news, events and businesses.  Subscribe with a simple email to sjda@sjdowntown.com, subject line:  Subscribe.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

BlueJeans moves HQ to San Jose

The popular video conferencing company BlueJeans is moving from Mountain View to the posh Santana Row flagship building at the very end of the row. They are upgrading from a 24,000 SQFT space to 40,000 SQFT in the same area where Splunk is headquartered. In fact, BlueJeans may have to bump up their salaries to keep their neighbor from poaching talent--Splunk has the highest median salary of any large company in the US.

It is an interesting move considering that their key competitor, Zoom, is also located in San Jose (Downtown). A few weeks ago Zoom became the must successful IPO of 2019 and the company is now worth over $16 billion. BlueJeans is smaller player but was worth $728 million four years ago during their last funding round. Who knows, they could be the next epic San Jose IPO.

Source: SVBJ

Monday, May 6, 2019

Santana Row opens new public plaza and 1,300 space garage

The capstone project at the very end of Santana Row is nearing completion, and two very important components of that project have just opened. First, a new 21,000 SQFT signature plaza is now open to the public. It features fountains, benches, a re-planted oak tree, and the beautiful landscaping Santana Row is known for. When the building is complete, there will be new retail stores wrapping around the plaza as well.

The second component is a much-needed 1,300 space parking lot, just north of the plaza. This should make parking at the Row much easier during those busy summer months.

Another nice perk of the garage is 50 (!) new EV parking stations, bringing the grand total to 134 at Santana Row. San Jose has one of the highest concentration of electric car owners in the world, so this is greatly appreciated.

Santana Row was the site of the very first Tesla store and there is a new amenity that I didn't really see announced anywhere. Last year, there were 0 Tesla Superchargers in San Jose. These are highly coveted since they charge 3 to 10 times faster than normal chargers. Today, there is not one but two Supercharger stations at Santana Row with a total of 36 stalls, making it one of the largest Tesla stations anywhere. Based on the press release for the new garage, they may get 25 more stalls in the near future since 61 Tesla stalls are referenced.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Downtown San Jose Farmers’ Market season begins May 3

The Downtown San Jose farmer's market is back tomorrow from 10am-2pm on San Pedro Street! Check out the full press release below.

Fresh produce, hot food, unique gifts available each Friday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at San Pedro Square

SAN JOSE - The Downtown San Jose Farmers’ Market, presented by Kaiser Permanente, will take place Fridays 10 a.m.-2 p.m. starting May 3 along San Pedro Street between Santa Clara and St. John streets.
The market includes fresh produce from California growers, fresh cut flowers, special gourmet foods and artisan booths full of clothing and crafts.  The energy of the market is lifted by live music, special food booths, San Pedro Square restaurants lining the street and thousands of downtown employees and residents who make the market part of their weekly routine.
The Pacific Coast Farmers’ Market Association (PCFMA) recruits 25-40 farmers and the San Jose Downtown Association oversees the street closures and other vendors. The partnership dates back to spring 1993, when the market was originally located at First and San Fernando streets. This is the 27th season.
Admission is free.

For more, check PCFMA.org, the @PCFMA Facebook page and sjdowntown.com

The market continues each week into November. On average, 2,500 residents, office workers and visitors head to the Farmers’ Market.  Customers are encouraged to bring their own reusable and washed bags.
Market partner Kaiser Permanente has teamed with the Downtown Association and PCFMA for nine years, educating attendees on healthful and “green” living that allow each individual to thrive.

In the spirit of thriving, many market shoppers walk to the market.  Those who drive can get parking validation for the Market-San Pedro Garage at the SJDA information table.  Visit www.parksj.org. Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) recommends riding light rail to the Santa Clara Street or St. James Street stations.  More at VTA.org.

Follow the Downtown Farmers’ Market on Twitter (@SJ_Downtown) and Facebook (/sjdowntown and /DowntownFarmers’Market).  The market website is https://sjdowntown.com/farmers-market-presented-by-kaiser-permanente/

About the San Jose Downtown Association:  The San Jose Downtown Association is a non-profit group of business and property owners working to improve the vitality and livability of downtown San Jose.  Established in 1986, SJDA programs more than 100 days of events each year.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Diridon Community Engagement Event: May 4 at SJ Museum of Art

The SJSU Master of Urban Planning Program is hosting an open house along with CommUniverCity to discuss how Diridon can be better connected to the rest of Downtown San Jose. In addition to some thoughtful discussion, the event has free food, activities, and entertainment and will take place this Saturday, May 4th from 10am to 2pm at the San Jose Museum of Art (also worth checking out).

You can RSVP over here.