2070 Alum Rock

In Design

2070 Alum Rock Ave., San Jose, CA 95116

Project Overview
  • Project Type: Housing + Commercial

  • Owner/Developer: RCPM Consultants

  • Presented to our members: April 2020

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Catalyze SV evaluates project sustainability, equity, and vibrancy. Learn about our project review process.

For more information, please refer to our scorecard below:

* Projects go through several phases. Developers submit applications to the City, get their design reviewed, do redesigns based on City & community feedback, resubmit proposals for review, and get approval (though can even redesign after approval)

2070 Alum Rock Ave Project Scorecard

Project Overview:

 

2070 Alum Rock Ave by RCPM Consultants is for 44 homes, of which 15% will be affordable. It also includes 3,000 square feet of ground-floor retail, 76 parking spaces for cars, and 44 for bikes. The site is 1,500 feet from the 522 Rapid and 300 feet from the 23 frequent buses which both travel to downtown San Jose.  

 

2070 Alum Rock scored 3.16 out of 5 overall from our Project Advocacy Committee members and 2.83 by the Alum Rock Urban Village Advocates (ARUVA)

 

2070 Alum Rock was presented and scored by both to the Alum Rock Urban Village Advocates and Catalyze SV’s Project Advocacy Committee.

Community Score: 3/5

We appreciate the community engagement the developer RCPM Consultants has conducted to date, including meeting with ARUVA and Catalyze SV. But we believe more outreach needs to occur. We’d ask RCPM Consultants to conduct outreach to the existing businesses on Alum Rock Ave between King Road & Highway 680, as well as residents within 1,000 feet of the project on Shortridge and Sunset Ave. Finally, we suggest RCPM Consultants continue working closely with ARUVA & SOMOS Mayfair on outreach with their membership base and the general community. Feedback from community groups such as these is the best way to ensure the project is accepted in the community.

Vibrancy Score: 3/5

We appreciate the opportunities that this project on a small site has to enhance the vibrancy of the Alum Rock Urban Village. We’d like to see the architectural design adapted to celebrate the historical and/or new directions of Mexican architecture in particular or Latin American in general. ARUVA and Catalyze SV would also like to see locally relevant public art included in the design. Shared decision-making authority with local residents in the artist selection, design, and/or creation of the art would be an innovative way of building public support for this project.

Transportation Score: 4/5 (ARUVA Score: 3)

ARUVA Comments: Good progress has been made on addressing transportation issues. ARUVA appreciates the generous plans for auto and bicycle parking. We believe the project would merit a higher score from ARUVA if the developer provided transit passes to all occupants of the project and provided free parking spaces for all VLI and ELI units.


Catalyze SV Comments: We agree that this transit-accessible project should provide transit passes to residents. We also believe that there should be additional bike parking on the ground level for easier access. On parking, we are concerned that residents, especially those on a fixed and/or low-income, would need to pay for the cost of parking in their rental fees. By charging separately for parking, residents that choose to forgo owning a car and instead use transit and other sustainable modes will be able to reduce costs. This will also ensure parking spaces available to those that require a car for work, school, or other activities.

Sustainability Score: 2/5

During the presentation, there was no evidence of a commitment to adopting sustainable building practices on this project. We recommend that the developer looks into certifying this project through a green building standard (such as LEED) higher than the City of San Jose’s building code. We also recommend that the developer looks into the potential of adding native plants and shading for windows on the west and south sides of the building that could reduce sun exposure and the need for air conditioning.

Intensity/Zoning Score: 4/5 (ARUVA Score: 3)

ARUVA’s comments on this section were more around business affordability (which is added as a special section below). We commend RCPM Consultants for building to the City’s currently maximum allowable height and intensity on this site. The project could be even better if additional floors were explored through a density bonus which could also increase the number of affordable homes on-site (perhaps without adding more parking).

Affordability Score: 3/5

We’re happy this project currently plans to build 15% of the units on-site as affordable. That being said, we ask for more to be done. To reach the goal of ARUVA’s Plan for Equitable Development, we ask the developer to explore making 25% of units affordable to ELI & VLI households. In addition, we understand the developer may look into adding additional floors as a density bonus. We believe setting aside those additional units as affordable should be explored.

Legacy Score: N/A

Members of ARUVA and Catalyze SV didn’t think this category was applicable to this site.

 
Overall Score: 3.16 out of 5 (ARUVA Score: 2.83)

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