Michele Beasley

Michele Beasley

The Grand Central Station of the West Coast

Which Bay Area train station has future BART and high-speed rail stops planned, a major entertainment venue across the street, and an international airport a few miles up the road? That would be Diridon Station in downtown San Jose. The city envisions a thriving neighborhood with jobs, entertainment, and homes for the 250 acres surrounding the historic train depot.

Just before the holidays, the “Grand Central Station of the West Coast” took an important step toward making this vision a reality—the City released the Diridon Station Area Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) following a two year wait. This public document details the significant environmental effects of a project, possible ways to minimize those effects, and reasonable alternatives to the project as proposed.

Greenbelt Alliance and our partners are currently reviewing the document and have several goals for the neighborhood around Diridon Station:

  1. Hundreds of homes near multiple public transit options, including the development and preservation of affordable homes
  2. A well-designed, dense mix of uses (i.e. residential, retail, etc.) to support public transportation and ensure a more walkable, bikeable environment
  3. Complete streets that connect pedestrians and bicyclists in all directions
  4. A progressive parking- and transportation-demand management program that encourages taking transit
  5. A focus on place-making to celebrate public spaces and the area’s natural amenities, such as Guadalupe River and Los Gatos Creek, that can be economic generators
  6. The creation of meaningful, sustainable jobs that are accessible to local residents and benefit the local economy

Comments on the DEIR are due on Thursday, February 13. Greenbelt Alliance, the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition, and Working Partnerships, USA will be hosting a workshop on how to comment on the Diridon Station DEIR on the evening of January 30. Please contact Michele at mbeasley@greenbelt.org for more details.

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