Council OKs Asian-focused retail center on northeast side

Pacific Pearl will include supermarket, restaurants

The Pleasanton City Council Tuesday approved the construction of a multi-million-dollar, Asian-focused retail and office center in Staples Ranch which will serve as a designated gateway to the city's northeast side.

The center, to be called Pacific Peal, will rival in size and scope the Pleasanton Gateway Center built two years ago across from the Alameda County Fairgrounds at Bernal and Valley avenues, which is anchored by a Safeway Lifestyle supermarket.

Bradley Blake, representing BHV CenterStreet Properties of Danville, the developer, told the council that Pacific Pearl will be anchored by Marina Food, a supermarket with an international food court and a large variety of products. The spacious shopping center center also will feature a variety of restaurants, retail stores and service businesses. Although Pacific Pearl will cater to a many-faceted clientele and taste, its focus will be Asian.

Besides Marina Food and its food court, Blake said roughly a third to half of the center's tenants will be restaurants, including one at 60,000 square feet that will serve as a banquet facility as well. Its operator, who has not been named, operates Chinese restaurants in other parts of the Bay Area and is associated with similar restaurants in China.

"But even with the Asian focus, you'll still be able to order a pizza at Pacific Pearl," Blake told Councilwoman Kathy Narum.

The 112,000-square-foot shopping center will be built on a 11.5-acre site reserved for a retail development at the time the council approved the Staples Ranch Specific Plan in 2009 and later annexed the 124-acre county-owned site.

Pacific Pearl will face onto Stoneridge Drive at El Charro Road, just south of the San Francisco (formerly Livermore) Premium Outlets center. A large monument sign will welcome motorists to Pleasanton. A similar sign is being made to face motorists exiting I-680 at Bernal Avenue.

The center and its architecturally-pleasing design of brick and stucco were approved earlier by the Pleasanton Planning Commission. It will include five separate buildings for offices and retail use. To maintain diversity, the commission added a restriction to its approval restricting the number of medical offices that would be allowed in the center and also limiting the size of any barbershops or beauty parlors to no more than 5,000 square feet.

Traffic signals will be installed at the main entrance to Pacific Pearl on Stoneridge Drive, with two lanes leading into the center and three leading out. Mike Tassano, the city's traffic engineer, said preliminary projects show about 60% of those coming into the center will be from Pleasanton with 40% from Livermore and off the I-580 freeway.

Access to Pacific Pearl will allow entry on two lanes off Stoneridge Drive into the center with three lanes for leaving the center, also onto Stoneridge. There will be no driveways off El Charro except for a gated emergency road.

City Manager Nelson Fialho estimated that the city should receive $280,000 a year in tax revenue from Pacific Pearl. Pleasanton Gateway near the Fairgrounds generates $285,000 a year, he said. The two shopping centers are roughly the same size, totaling 112,000 square feet at the new Pacific Peal and 125,351 square feet at the now-completed and occupied Pleasanton Gateway center.

Council members praised the project. Narum said her mother, a resident at the nearby Stoneridge Creek retirement community, looks forward to being able to go over to Pacific Pearl's grocery store for milk without having to drive on the freeway.

Councilwoman Karla Brown said the center will bring about 300 new jobs to Pleasanton.

"This is a win-win project for everybody and I support it," she said.

Construction is expected to start later this year with the center's opening projected for 2017.

We can't do it without you.
Support local journalism.


16 people like this
Posted by Time to move
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 4, 2015 at 8:37 am

Aren't we all happy that Stoneridge was completed through to Livermore? Stoneridge will become just one more clogged road through Pleasanton. And what could be more beautiful as an entrance to Pleasanton that an outlet mall, a shopping center and a used car lot?

Posted by Name hidden
a resident of Amador Estates

on Mar 4, 2015 at 8:50 am

Due to repeated violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are automatically removed. Why?

Posted by Name hidden
a resident of Amador Estates

on Mar 4, 2015 at 8:51 am

Due to repeated violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are automatically removed. Why?

12 people like this
Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Mar 4, 2015 at 8:56 am

And yet another reason for all those commuters to bail off the freeway and cut through our neighborhoods, full speed ahead!!! That new retail center would make a great place to relocate all our massage parlors to, one stop shopping!!

9 people like this
Posted by ok
a resident of Amador Estates
on Mar 4, 2015 at 9:05 am

So move.

1 person likes this
Posted by mooseturd
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Mar 4, 2015 at 9:17 am

mooseturd is a registered user.

I don't care diddly squat about gateways but I'm sure glad we finally got Stoneridge Dr. completed. It has made my life much more enjoyable. I especially enjoy honking my horn as I cross the necked down bridge.

16 people like this
Posted by Lugnut
a resident of Amador Estates
on Mar 4, 2015 at 9:18 am

Welcome to the new Fremont, Union City, Newark. The Tri Valley is dead, we are now the new Tri-Cities. This council is bought and paid for by the Chamber of Commerce and Republican Developers. Get over it.

2 people like this
Posted by FrequentWalkerMiles
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 4, 2015 at 9:41 am

I bet all those whining about Asians on pleasantonweekly will eventually cash out and sell their homes at greatly appreciated prices to....Asians.

BTW I keep seeing this development being referred to as "Asian Gateway" (a proper noun), but then in the article there is no more reference to that particular phrase. Is that the official name or is it used to provoke web traffic?

16 people like this
Posted by Rob
a resident of Mohr Park
on Mar 4, 2015 at 9:51 am

More revenue for the city without building even more 5 story apartment buildings. I'll call this a win.

5 people like this
Posted by JY
a resident of Dublin
on Mar 4, 2015 at 9:58 am

JY is a registered user.

This comment is a borderline ethnic slur and is irrelevant to this post. It has been removed.

15 people like this
Posted by eakwave1
a resident of Mohr Park
on Mar 5, 2015 at 8:38 am

eakwave1 is a registered user.

I already knew Pleasanton was full of snobs, but it's now confirmed to be full of racist jerks. I have no problem with Stoneridge going to Livermore (I love it, actually), and I'm cool with whatever we build there.

11 people like this
Posted by Steven
a resident of Stoneridge
on Mar 5, 2015 at 4:07 pm

Steven is a registered user.

I wish we wouldn't designate a strip mall area for a particular cultural group. I find that other "Asian" strip malls, like the one near Dublin Blvd & Santa Rita, tend to be exclusionary. If you can speak the language, additional menu items suddenly appear. The venues don't have any incentive to make it easy for people of other cultural backgrounds since there is little competition in the immediate area.

I think that a strip mall can be predominantly slated for a particular culture, but there should be a requirement for 25-40% of the stores/restaurants to be more general in nature (or even from other cultures). I think you would see less foreign language signage, and improved service.

By the way, since I'm pretty good with speaking Vietnamese for food, I see the "other menu" all the time in Vietnamese restaurants. There's just some things that they'll always make, and it's not always on the menu. If more non-speakers were customers, this might be reduced.

4 people like this
Posted by Joe Blow
a resident of Del Prado
on Mar 6, 2015 at 12:47 pm

Joe Blow is a registered user.

I couldn't agree more with Steven.
This is a VERY bad idea.
I'm actually a little shocked that our city council has approved this.
Where is their "head" ? as we used to say.
If we have been paying attention to world news and today's world order, it's quite obvious that ethnic and or religious exclusion has played a significant role in the radicalization in Europe.
It is the inclusionary culture of our country that has allowed the majority of "New Guys" to our country to feel more a part of us. It is very important that the different cultures and religions feel an integrated part of the whole society and designing and building enclaves within does nothing but eventual undermine this.
May I ask "Who's next" to build an area where exclusivity helps one feel comfortable away from "home".
As Steven said also if there was some zoning rules to require say, 40% of other cultural business within the area then it would make some sense.
Let's go for inclusion rather than exclusion No matter how benign it may at first appear.

16 people like this
Posted by caywen
a resident of Del Prado
on Mar 6, 2015 at 9:44 pm

caywen is a registered user.

I dunno, I think it brings some perspective, if you ask me. If you were an Asian immigrant, how comfortable would you feel going to Safeways and Whole Foods? The most Asian thing you'd see is a Panda Express, which is a mockery. Were a Caucasian American to live in China, wouldn't a Safeway in your town make you a little more at home?

Pleasanton is approaching 30% Asian. It's perfectly understandable to me that there would be venues to cater to a third of the people. And there's nothing actually exclusionary about it. There's no reason a black or white person shouldn't feel comfortable walking into a Sheng Kee bakery to buy bread.

Except maybe that person would feel a bit self conscious? That's probably how Asians feel living in the US, especially in parts that are only a few percent Asian. Don't take for granted the sense of displacement many minorities feel. Walk in their shoes for a little while before dismissing this new venue as exclusionary.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Be the first to know

Get the latest headlines sent straight to your inbox every day.

Couples: Reading List
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,494 views

New Donlon school is at least four years away
By Tim Hunt | 1 comment | 876 views