Slim residential tower in downtown San Jose

SAN JOSE – In downtown San Jose, a sleek 26-story tower block is planned in an important location that is expected to have a future BART stop.

Eterna Tower, a skyscraper near the corner of East Santa Clara Street and North First Street, is viewed by its developer and architect as a dramatic addition to an important section of downtown San Jose.

The residential tower would add 96 residential units, known as studios, to a location at 17 E. Santa Clara St. This emerges from documents submitted to the city by developer Roygbiv Real Estate Development and project designer Anderson Architects.

“It’s a great downtown location,” said Kurt Anderson, General Manager at Anderson Architects in Campbell.

The Eterna Tower would be next to a BART station just one stop from the location of a transit village suggested by Google near the Diridon train node.

“It’s a real transitory development,” said Anderson. “A BART station will be right there. You could stay in Eterna Tower, go downstairs, take a BART train, and be on your way. “

There is currently a boarded-up former sex shop for adults on the project site, which was destroyed by fire in 2019.

“Any new investment in this block would be very welcome,” said Scott Knies, executive director of the San Jose Downtown Association.

Much of this section of East Santa Clara Street, particularly on the north side of the thoroughfare between First and Second Streets, is dominated by empty retail stores and boarded-up windows.

However, numerous plans are underway to revitalize the First and Santa Clara Streets area. Major renovation projects are underway at three of the four corners of this intersection.

“There’s so much going on in downtown San Jose and near the Eterna Tower,” said Anderson. “There are so many options in this part of downtown and elsewhere.”

Among the notable projects on or within half a block of the site:

– Bank of Italy’s historic office tower at 12 S. First St., which has been extensively renovated by a Gary Dillabough and West Bank development company.

– The former JC Penney building at 1 W. Santa Clara St. is being refurbished as an office building by Jay Paul Co.

– The former Bank of the West building at 2 W. Santa Clara St. is in the final stages of a complete renovation as an office building, a project by Divco West.

– An office and restaurant project with a café on the roof is planned on 26 S. First St. next to Fountain Alley by Urban Catalyst. In this development, a historical building will also be preserved and integrated.

– Just blocks east of the Eterna Tower is the Miro, a large mixed-use project consisting of two residential towers and retail stores on the first floor, under construction on East Santa Clara Street and North Fourth Street.

Anderson believes that the Eterna Tower project at 17 E. Santa Clara St. will be part of this new development.

“We can be part of the new wave of life in downtown San Jose,” said Anderson. “The project lends itself to a very unique lifestyle. With four units per floor, everyone has a good view. Everyone gets a corner of the building. “

Concepts of the Eterna Tower, which are on file with city planners, show that the residential project could be a remarkable addition to the San Jose skyline. For one thing, it would be significantly higher than other buildings in the immediate vicinity.

“We really wanted this to be a very iconic building, a real show stopper,” said Anderson.

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