Zoe Siegel

Zoe Siegel

Greenbelt Alliance Endorsed: Downtown San Mateo Opportunity Sites

Update: After the San Mateo City Council unanimously approved the “Downtown San Mateo Opportunity Sites” project on August 17th, 2020, it’s now expected to begin construction later in 2021. The development has been recently renamed Kiku Crossing.

Kiku is the Japanese word for the flower Chrysanthemum, in a nod to the Japanese immigrant community in San Mateo that cultivated this flower in the late 19th, early 20th centuries. The word Crossing “reflects the coming together, convergence and movement associated with the adjacent Caltrain railroad tracks in downtown San Mateo”, explained MidPen Housing Corporation.

Greenbelt Alliance is proud to endorse the “Downtown San Mateo Opportunity Sites” project. This project is a 225-unit, 100% affordable, residential development by MidPen Housing Corporation in San Mateo’s Downtown Area.

The project is split across two sites, with a combined area of 2.41 acres, in downtown San Mateo, currently used for 235 surface parking spaces. MidPen proposes to develop 225 units of affordable rental housing on the parcel at 480 E 4th Ave, and a 699-stall parking garage on 400 E 5th Ave. The residential structure will include a mixture of studio-, one-, two-, and three-bedroom homes serving extremely-low, very-low, low, and moderate-income households, which will be deed-restricted for 55 years.

The Downtown San Mateo Opportunity Sites” project utilizes a density transfer provision in the City’s zoning code to transfer the housing unit density between the two sites, and the State Density Bonus for affordable housing to achieve a density of 68 dwelling units per acre. 20 units will be restricted for extremely-low income households and 12 units will be restricted to homeless households. 41 units will have a preference for public employees.

MidPen Housing has a comprehensive approach to community engagement throughout the pre-development phase including one-on-one meetings with stakeholders and community groups, an open house, a public meeting, and a survey. This project proposal has been endorsed by the San Mateo Chamber of Commerce, Silicon Valley Leadership Group, and the Housing Leadership Council.

Greenbelt Alliance is proud to give this project our endorsement

Greenbelt Alliance’s “Grow Smart Bay Area” goals call for fully protecting the Bay Area’s greenbelt, directing growth into our existing communities, and accomplishing both in a way that equitably benefits all Bay Area residents. Greenbelt Alliance’s development endorsement program helps further our “Grow Smart Bay Area” goals by providing independent validation of smart infill housing (development of vacant land within urban areas) and mixed-use projects (projects with various uses, such as office, commercial, and residential).

Learn more about sprawl threats in San Mateo and around the Bay Area by downloading our At Risk report today.

You can find out more about our Endorsement Program here. Feel free to contact our team with any questions you may have. We’re here to help!

Photo: MidPen Housing

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