SAN JOSE – Doordash plans to revamp a nine-decade-old building in downtown San Jose through a lease agreement that will further strengthen the increasingly lively SoFA district.
The online grocery ordering and delivery company has rented a building in the South First Area (SoFA) in downtown San Jose where the company will open a location for its new DashMart service.
San Francisco-based Doordash confirmed in an email that it is working to open a DashMart site at 431 S. First St.
Alex Lagemann, director at Cushman & Wakefield, a commercial real estate company, represented Doordash on the lease.
“Getting this deal in downtown San Jose is spectacular,” said Mark Ritchie, president of Ritchie Commercial, a real estate company. “It is good to have such alternative uses in SoFA.”
SoFA is a part of downtown San Jose that’s dotted with restaurants, bars, nightclubs, cocktail lounges, entertainment options, and live performance venues.
“The lights come on in a building that has been vacant for a long time,” said Scott Knies, executive director of the San Jose Downtown Association. “This is a wonderful place.”
Corotto Building at 431 S. First St. in the SoFA neighborhood of downtown San Jose. // George Avalos / Bay Area News Group
The building has a total area of approximately 7,000 square meters and is mainly owned by Richard Berg, a local real estate investor and a resident of Santa Cruz.
“I think this new concept will fit in well with SoFA,” said Berg.
Founded in 2013 by a group of Stanford University students, Doordash began rolling out its new DashMart concept in 2020.
“DashMart is a new type of convenience store that brings our customers household items as well as local restaurant favorites on their doorstep,” wrote Andrew Ladd, Director of New Industries at Doordash, in a blog post in August 2020.
During the coronavirus crisis, Doordash stepped up efforts to reach people at home through what the technology company calls the “convenience category” and also stepped up efforts to empower restaurants through the “Main Street Strong” program.
Both efforts are supported by the DashMart program that Doordash launched.
“DashMart has thousands of convenience, grocery and restaurant items, from ice cream and french fries, to cough suppressants and dog food, to condiment mixes and packaged desserts from the local restaurants you love on DoorDash,” Ladd told the blog post.
DashMart offers 3,500 items per store, a Doordash spokesman said.
Appliances including refrigerators and kitchen shelves are visible in a building in downtown San Jose in the SoFA neighborhood at 431 S. First St. // George Avalos / Bay Area News Group
Doordash believes that through the new DashMart service, it can help customers in a variety of ways:
– For dealers, DashMart offers a new sales channel through which they can reach customers online.
– DashMart offers customers a new way to discover their favorite restaurant brands online and at the same time to stock up on the essentials of everyday life.
“DoorDash investments in the SOFA district are a trend that must continue,” said Bob Staedler, managing director of Silicon Valley Synergy, a land use consultancy. “A critical mass of uses will make it a living area.”
The land rented by Doordash is known as the Corotto Building, which was built around 1932. The building has facades on South First Street and South Market Street and entrances.
Doordash expects to have the DashMart site open by the end of June.
“It’s exciting to see new uses come to downtown San Jose,” said Knies. “The lights go on again in SoFA.”
Interior of a DashMart site with items on shelves. // Doordash