SAN JOSE – Some humble properties that Google bought in downtown San Jose near the Shark Tank are ready to provide land to create affordable housing development made possible by the search giant’s transit village.
In 2018, Google bought three properties on North Montgomery Street and North Autumn Street in multiple transactions over a seven-month period.
At the time, the transactions raised eyebrows as the properties were outside of the emerging footprint of the tech titan’s proposed Downtown West neighborhood. Real estate experts said the purchases primarily indicated that the Google transit village is expanding into new areas.
Now it turns out that the websites are vital as Google can provide the city with the land for San Jose to start developing 200 affordable homes.
“The opportunity for Google to donate land for affordable housing development is great,” said Nanci Klein, director of economic development for San Jose.
Taken together, the three parcels total just over 0.8 acres and are located such that any development on the property would have a front in both North Montgomery and North Autumn.
“This gives the city the opportunity to create affordable housing in Diridon Station,” said Klein.
Google intends to donate the city’s land for the development of affordable homes in this location, according to Google, city officials and municipal documents.
In April 2018, Google paid $ 1.9 million for a website at addresses 240 and 250 N. Montgomery St., according to documents filed with county officials.
In November 2018, Google paid $ 3 million for a website at 255 N. Autumn St. and 260 N. Montgomery St.
The properties are all south of West Julian Street and east of the northern parking lots of the SAP Center.
The proposed Downtown West Development Agreement, which Google filed with city officials on April 6, included plans to develop 4,000 homes on Google-owned land within the transit village’s footprint.
Of those 4,000 homes, 1,000 would be affordable, as suggested by the development proposal for Downtown West, a mixed-use village with offices, houses, shops, restaurants, hotel facilities, entertainment centers, cultural centers, and parks where Google could employ up to 80 people, and 20,000 people.
“This amount of affordable housing is unprecedented for a private development in San Jose,” Google said this week.
Google also got involved in developing affordable homes outside of Downtown West’s footprint through a variety of approaches, including donating land for low-cost, low-cost housing near the transit village.
“We are very fortunate to have a generous Google among us,” said Mark Ritchie, president of Ritchie Commercial, a real estate company.
Preserving land from Google for affordable development is vital as Google’s increasingly visible interest in creating a dramatic new neighborhood on the western edge of downtown San Jose near the Diridon train station and the SAP center as well Has increased property values in the area.
“The Diridon Station area is getting more and more expensive,” said Klein.