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About this blog: I am a native of Alameda County, grew up in Pleasanton and currently live in the house I grew up in that is more than 100 years old. I spent 39 years in the daily newspaper business and wrote a column for more than 25 years in add...  (More)

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City Council to consider process for redeveloping Stoneridge mall area

Uploaded: Aug 11, 2022
Even pre-pandemic, it’s been clear that the economic viability of Stoneridge Shopping Center has shifted. The city was tracking declining sales tax revenues before two of the five major retailers—Sears and Nordstrom—shuttered their operations.
Simon Co., which owns most of the nearly 75-acre parcel, already has rezoned about 10 acres for high density housing and one 360-unit project is currently in the review process. Simon also has been approved for redevelopment of the Sears building and the adjacent parking structure into an outdoor-oriented retail center with a small supermarket, an athletic club and perhaps a hotel. The project is 256,000 square feet, larger than the 167,000-square-foot Sears store. A city report about developing a framework for redoing an overall plan for the mall area notes that the project is on hold because of the economic uncertainty.
Tuesday evening, the city council will consider the staff recommendation to develop a framework for the area that could lead to a new master plan or specific plan. 10xGenomics already has a three-building life sciences campus under construction on a former retail site adjacent to the mall parking lot.
In addition, the sprawling parking lots surrounding the shopping center could be rezoned for additional high density housing in the current update housing element of the city’s general plan.
The mall situation is even more interesting because Danville-based 300 Venture Group just purchased the land parcel that the JCPenney store is built on. Penney still owns the building and the retail company was saved by a joint venture of Simon and Brookfield, two of the largest mall owners, that partnered to prop up a major retailer operating in many of their centers. No plans were released by 300 Venture, but a spokesman said that the location at the intersection of two interstates in an upscale community makes it a premier site.
The Nordstrom site is owned by another entity, while Simon owns the Macy’s men’s and children’s store on the west side of the mall having purchased them from Macy’s in 2017. Macy’s owns its store and site.
City staff wants to hire consultants to analyze what could work economically and traffic-wise on the key site. It’s hard to believe that one of the Bay Area’s showcase malls in an upscale area now needs way more than a facelift.
The shift to online shopping was accelerated by the pandemic shutdown and, like with office space, the future of the class A space around the shopping center is fraught with uncertainty. It was unusual that the periphery of Stoneridge attracted so many office uses and just one sad retail center when you compare it to other area malls. Amazon was leasing any and all warehouse space in sight for the last couple of years, but it has recently slowed and starting sub-letting space as demand has shifted.
And think how quickly the economy can shift. Workday, which has its headquarters at the Stoneridge BART station plus a three-building complex, had the Pleasanton Plaza retail site under contract before the shutdown. It let that option lapse and 10x Genomics snapped it up and its new campus is due to be completed in 2023. As I reported Tuesday, 10x’s rapid growth has slowed significantly and it announced layoffs of 8% of its workforce.
It’s a good move for the city to establish a framework that can lead to an overall plan for that vital area instead of doing piecemeal one-off considerations.
What is it worth to you?


Posted by Mica, a resident of Alisal Elementary School,
on Aug 15, 2022 at 10:29 am

Mica is a registered user.

The Mall has been a magnet for shoplifters, mugging and more recently shooting in the parking lots. The accessibility to both I580 and I680 freeways and secondarily to BART no doubt has encouraged these types of crime. It is critical that there be a good mix of open air retail (see Pleasant Hill Downtown). and different housing types and densities. It may be tempting for policy makers to establish only high density housing at this location to meet RNHA. But I see crime in the high density areas of Dublin BART occurring. Senior housing may be appropriate near Kaiser medical facility with a transition to higher density closer to BART for surrounding office workers.

Posted by VickiC, a resident of Stoneridge,
on Aug 15, 2022 at 10:44 am

VickiC is a registered user.

In the meantime, Stoneridge/Foothill residents are more fearful of shopping at the mall due to recent stories of thefts (Apple), carjackings (UBER), armed robberies. We are being forced back to online shopping or driving to Walnut Creek, where there are some of the same issues, but more security.

The fewer shoppers at the mall, the more crime. You can hear squealing tires at night from sideshow wannabes in the parking lot. Drag racing on Foothill, Stoneridge and side streets. Sounds of gunshot/fireworks at odd hours. Some are reported, but living in a townhome complex limits the ability to determine exactly the direction/location of the noise.

I do hope these issues are addressed by the City and PPD before more housing, more cars are added to the mall site.

Posted by Puppetlady, a resident of Highland Oaks,
on Aug 15, 2022 at 10:18 pm

Puppetlady is a registered user.

Has anyone ever considered "where are we going to get the water" for all the additional high density housing. And now adding additional traffic for Costco (desired) in the same area. Maybe more Child Care Centers? I'm sure the tutoring sites might be added, since we surely don't have enough of those. Maybe a covered Pickle Ball court or two, or an Indoor Skating Rink, since Golden Skate is closing.

Posted by Coral, a resident of Alamo,
on Aug 27, 2022 at 1:43 pm

Coral is a registered user.

For the Stoneridge Mall redesign, I think put the parking lot underground is the key point.The Parking lot area can use to create a indoor and outdoor seaminglessly together city living room where could drag people from online to the place social, playing, exercising, eating, entertaining and learning .

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