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Silicon Valley planning non-profit issues its second-highest score ever for downtown Google Village project

Photo Credit: Wikimedia
By Wesley Severson - Published on December 08, 2020.

One of the biggest, most ambitious development projects in the history of downtown San Jose, known as Downtown West, continues to make headlines. 

Downtown West is a transit-oriented village neighborhood that is being proposed by Google. It would feature several big new buildings that would be a mixture of new offices, homes, businesses, hotels, museums, and plazas near the SAP Center and Diridon train station.

Google believes up to 20,000 people could live and work in the area, and the company released detailed renderings of the project in early October which were posted by San Jose Spotlight

According to the Mercury News, the non-profit Catalyze SV released its analysis of the project this week. The Google Village plan picked up Catalyze SV’s second-highest score ever. 

Catalyze SV claims on its website that it “engages community members, developers, and city leaders to envision and create sustainable, equitable, and vibrant places for people in Silicon Valley.”

Catalyze SV’s assessment addressed seven different categories: Community, Affordability, Transportation, Legacy, Intensity, Sustainability, and Vibrancy.

The non-profit gave the Google Village project an average score of 4.29 out of 5 points.

The Mercury News reports that McEvoy residential towers development is the only other project that has scored higher with 4.6 points.

"Our members and our entire community expect Google’s plans for 80 acres of prime land in the heart of San Jose to be as innovative and visionary as Google has been for two decades,” Alex Shoor, executive director of Catalyze SV, told the Mercury News.

Google still needs to clear several hurdles before the project gets the full green light to move forward.

Hoodline reported in November that one of the biggest obstacles could be the San Jose Sharks, with the team claiming that the project will devastate the parking situation downtown. 

The team believes moving forward with the Google Village plan would ultimately force them out of the SAP center because there will be no place for out of town fans to park to see the games.

Other community groups have also come forward with claims that the Downtown West project will end up raising the already high housing rates in San Jose. 

It does appear, however, that Google does have the support of Catalyze SV but how far-reaching that endorsement goes has yet to be seen.

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