Spring Street complex gets council's OK

New 3-story buildings to include commercial center, apartments

Despite opposition from the Pleasanton Downtown Association, developer James Knuppe has gained approval from the City Council to build a three-story commercial center and apartment complex at 273 Spring St.

The project will include two separate buildings, with a ground floor retail center on Spring Street and two apartments above in a three-story building. A second three-story building will be built behind the mixed-use retail complex consisting of three residential units.

Several members of the council expressed concerns that the complex lacked sufficient parking and that residents there would park their cars on downtown city streets, where parking is scarce.

That was also a concern of downtown merchants represented by the PDA.

Laura Olson, executive director of the PDA, said her organization felt that the proposed residential units would not benefit the downtown district, "especially since they are located one parcel in from Main Street, the core of our commercial district."

The PDA also said its experience has been that residents of downtown often complain about noise, while the PDA is seeking more restaurants and bars that feature noisy nighttime entertainment.

In his negotiations with city planners, Knuppe agreed to paint his two buildings in a more subdued color than the stark white initially proposed and to set the retail building farther back from Spring Street.

Still, the council demanded more. In approving the project, it requires Knuppe to advise residents that they can only use their garages for vehicles, not as workshops or for storage.

Before moving into the residential units, they must also be notified that they will be living in an entertainment district that at times can be noisy.

In recommending approval of the project, Gary Beaudin, director of Community Development for Pleasanton, told the council that Knuppe's complex "will enhance the vitality of the downtown while also increasing the city's supply of above-moderate level rental housing stock."

"The revised proposed project would establish a pedestrian-oriented retail use on the ground floor along Spring Street and upper floor offices," he said. "This will include five new residential units which would generate new activity and vitality along this segment of Spring Street.

Earlier, Pleasanton architect Charles Huff endorsed the project.

"This site has included two businesses that failed," he said. "The city was offered the land for a public parking lot and said no. Now we have a developer who has gone way beyond the city's requirements to please city staff and this should be approved."

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5 people like this
Posted by heresince69
a resident of Val Vista
on Mar 24, 2016 at 11:17 am

Just so more businesses fail? If the site already has had previous businesses fail, why approve a multi business complex? Just another example of how the city council doesnt give a rip about traffic or parking. Keep stacking people on top of each other & cram cars into an already packed, tiny space. It's all about $$ & living for the now, not about how it affects quality of life or community. Oh, & about increasing the supply of above moderate rental supply...have you no clue of the price of rents in this town?

2 people like this
Posted by mooseturd
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Mar 24, 2016 at 12:09 pm

mooseturd is a registered user.

I always have liked to park my care on city streets.

4 people like this
Posted by FrequentWalkerMiles
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 24, 2016 at 1:24 pm

FrequentWalkerMiles is a registered user.

"In approving the project, it requires Knuppe to advise residents that they can only use their garages for vehicles, not as workshops or for storage. "

Advise is not the same as requirements. Basically more cars on city streets from the apartment renters who use their garage as storage sheds andeach have 5 sub-leasees. That's how you succeed in Pleasanton these days!

9 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Downtown
on Mar 24, 2016 at 1:28 pm

"it requires Knuppe to advise residents that they can only use their garages for vehicles, not as workshops or for storage"

Or what? Mommie will take away one of your toys? Will the code enforcement department open garage doors to check for cars versus tools? Oh yeah, code enforcement never walks the streets anyhow or the illegal sidewalk signs, blocking the sidewalks, would not be out every day.

The merchants on that end of Main St have just lost a minimum of 10 parking spaces, two each per unit. Anyone taking bets on whether even ONE of those unit garages will ever see a car?

3 people like this
Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Mar 25, 2016 at 12:52 pm

"Can't use the garages for a workshop or storage" --what a joke, how about not turning those garages into bedrooms for the "grandparents". The city council has no idea what's going on, maybe it's time to get off their pedestals, and open their eyes, if this gets built we are going to see lots of overnight parking on main st. And on spring st!! I'm guessing an additional 3 cars on the streets per unit. Another job well done by these knuckleheads, big money talks,AGAIN!!

Like this comment
Posted by JD
a resident of Happy Valley
on Mar 26, 2016 at 10:50 pm

Time for another referendum...

1 person likes this
Posted by KK26
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 28, 2016 at 9:57 am

I can see the need for more rental units in Ptown, however if rents weren't so damn expensive, there wouldn't be 5 people to a 1bd apartment. There should also be an off street parking requirement enough to accomdate tennants and their visitors.
Parking garages and underground parking, not just crappy car ports or two visitor spots for 40 units. There is a way to do this right and provide rental homes. Not every working professional wants the upkeep of a house or has a family that needs one, in addition to spending a million on a starter home that needs to be totally redone!

3 people like this
Posted by Observer
a resident of Hacienda Gardens
on Mar 28, 2016 at 12:38 pm

Just another example of planners and the council not listening to what business owners are saying. Then they wonder why people pursue initiatives or referendums...

1 person likes this
Posted by AntiSheeple
a resident of Las Positas
on Mar 28, 2016 at 12:44 pm

So the city turns down the offer of the land for public parking in a busy downtown area, and then turns around and gives it to a developer for housing so more public parking spaces are taken for non-business use. Does anyone see the logic of this? Or are they so desperate to meet state mandates for housing that they allow their brains to go on 'sleep' mode?

1 person likes this
Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Mar 29, 2016 at 4:41 pm

It's going to be a perfect location for maybe a hair/nail salon, a massage parlor and maybe a check cashing store or a mini wal mart. It's going to be a proud addition to our downtown!! Goodbye downtown parking spots, hello new residents and their cars parking on our streets.

3 people like this
Posted by mooseturd
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Mar 29, 2016 at 5:57 pm

mooseturd is a registered user.

Surely there is room for a badly needed tattoo salon and spa.

3 people like this
Posted by No Change without Leadership Change
a resident of Avila
on Mar 29, 2016 at 9:41 pm

This was a decision driven by the people that wanted it the most.

Time after time for decades, our government has approved new developments of all kinds with little thought to the traffic they will generate or the inadequacy of parking for the customers/residents.

An in lieu parking fee is simply paid and the development marches forward.

For traffic concerns, the developer agrees to pay for another traffic signal. More cars mean more traffic lanes are needed, but a traffic light will suffice.

All of this is a continuing stain on Pleasanton's supposed "small town charm". Remind me again about how charming clogged streets and no parking spots are. Oh yea, this is how they do it in that city by the bay. Must be the right thing to do.

In the last election, Pleasanton had a candidate who offered a different approach to development. He lost. That says it all to me. We must like the status quo!

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