Uber co-founder CloudKitchens Venture advances in San Jose

SAN JOSE – A company controlled by Uber co-founder Travis Kalanick has proposed a renovation of a historic building in downtown San Jose that will turn the property into a ghost kitchen made up of dozens of small commercial kitchens.

In 2018, a Kalanick-run real estate company paid $ 7.3 million for the historic building, which has addresses between 82 and 92. E. Santa Clara St. The owners also received one

Now the Kalanick Group is pushing efforts to dramatically change the use of the building to turn it into a location for its CloudKitchens company.

The changes include changes to the storefronts on the first floor, the installation of new exit doors, minor changes to existing building entrances along East Santa Clara Street and South Third Street, and changes to the signs.

“The proposed changes would include CloudKitchens, a startup that provides shared commercial kitchen space for restaurants and cooks who do delivery-only,” according to a report from the city of San Jose.

Over the decades the property has been a boxing hall, an odd fellow hall, and a furniture store. Now it is ready to be the location of a state-of-the-art commercial kitchen company.

“25 small commercial kitchens would be installed on the first floor and offices would occupy the second and third floors,” the city staff report said.

The original Odd Fellows building at this address was built around 1885, San Jose officials said.

“The building is of particular historical architectural aesthetic value and interest and represents commercial design in the Italian style of the mid-19th century,” said the city report.

Work on the building, which totals 38,600 square feet, would be carried out in the basement and on all three floors of the property, according to a plan submitted by the owner.

In addition, a significant amount of work would be done on the outside of the building.

“The project suggests keeping and re-upholstering the existing awnings and partially re-labeling the existing signage that runs horizontally over the storefronts on East Santa Clara Street and South Third Street,” said the employee’s report the city.

A large new sign on the building along East Santa Clara Street would read “San Jose’s Downtown Food Hall” according to the project plans.

“The Cloud Kitchens concept cleverly reuses this historic building,” said Bob Staedler, chief executive of Silicon Valley Synergy, a land use consultancy. “Modern use with code changes is not easy to do well.”

The building has been empty for years since the furniture store closed down.

“It’s great to see the investment in a historic building in downtown San Jose,” said Staedler.

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