City completes purchase of First Street property

Buildings expected to be torn down this year to allow future public use of site

The Pleasanton City Council gave its approval to the city purchasing the commercial property at 4363 and 4377 First St., which includes these two buildings. Tenants were offered relocation compensation. (Photo by Jeremy Walsh)

The city of Pleasanton is now the owner of new downtown property, closing escrow last week on the $2 million purchase of a commercial parcel next to Lions Wayside Park and the Firehouse Arts Center.

The acquisition was endorsed by the City Council in early December with the goal of closing by the end of that month, but contingencies and other factors pushed out the transaction time-frame. The deal officially finalized on Jan. 31.

Though how the city will use the First Street property in the future is subject to more public deliberations, plans will include razing the two buildings once the tenants relocate and offering new public access to the site, according to City Manager Nelson Fialho.

"The city's goal in acquiring the property is to eliminate long-term blight, complement the expansion of Lions Wayside Park and improve parking circulation to and from the Firehouse Arts Center," he said in his monthly community newsletter.

Fialho told the Weekly that he expects the council will consider rezoning the parcel at 4363 and 4377 First St. from commercial to public property later this spring. A final recommendation for how to use the property going forward will be incorporated into the city's ongoing project to redesign Lions Wayside and Delucchi parks a plan ultimately subject to council approval.

The 18,200-square-foot property contains two commercial buildings, most recently occupied by tenants Express Liquor, Yan's Massage, Roots of Eastern Medicine (acupuncture), Team EdServe (marriage and family counseling), Urban Realty Services and a leased storage unit.

The property owners, Ianson Holdings, LLC and Malakoff & McIntyre, Inc., had been aiming to sell the commercial/retail parcel when they entered into negotiations with the city last year. The two sides agreed to initial terms in the fall, a deal that was endorsed by the council on Dec. 4.

One of the terms was that each tenant still under lease at the property must enter into a relocation agreement with the city to free up the two buildings. Each could be eligible for financial help from the city to help with relocation costs.

Fialho said he expects the remaining tenant spaces will be vacated within three to four months, and the goal is to tear down the buildings by the end of the year.

The total acquisition cost was estimated at up to $2.34 million, of which $2 million was the purchase price.

Other costs included $2,650 for environmental review, $32,500 to hire a relocation consultant and relocation expenses for the tenants that could total between $92,500 and $310,000, city staff estimated in December. Building removal and interim site maintenance would cost another $70,000.

The costs were paid from the city's Lions Wayside Park renovation project budget, which has about $4.5 million in funding in the city's capital improvement program. The Lions Wayside project will be reimbursed in the 2019-20 budget year.

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26 people like this
Posted by Spudly
a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Feb 6, 2019 at 9:53 am

32K for a relocation consultant....I will do it for 10K and save you 18K...If the total hours is 80 to find a new space for these tenants (and that seems like a lot to me) the price per hour is $400 per hour. Good gig. My offer is "only" $125 per hour!

7 people like this
Posted by Margo
a resident of Las Positas Garden Homes
on Feb 6, 2019 at 11:06 am

I hope that the improvements can include a restroom for that end of the park.

5 people like this
Posted by Downtowner
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 6, 2019 at 11:52 am

This strikes me as sort of a backwards way of doing redevelopment. Wouldn't it be much better to have a firm plan for the parcel, based on both demonstrated needs/preferences of the community plus actual tenant(s) who have made a formal statement of interest (or else a commitment by the City to build a public building)?

Spending a large amount to acquire the property and demolish the buildings with no plan in place for what is to be built there is irresponsible and runs the risk of the site remaining an empty eyesore for years, or worse, a bunch of empty buildings with "For Lease" signs. We already have a number of empty storefronts on Main St. and elsewhere downtown.

22 people like this
Posted by Teri
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 6, 2019 at 12:37 pm

I'm all in for eliminating long term downtown blight.

3 people like this
Posted by Juanita
a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Feb 7, 2019 at 9:42 am

Juanita is a registered user.

Wow. $ 2M for a 18,000 sf property (that’s less than a half acre) with commercial buildings to be razed. Costs of demo and future park improvements expenditures not yet included or considered. I’m all for removing blight and expanding the park but the price paid seems really high.

6 people like this
Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Feb 7, 2019 at 12:19 pm

Forget the restroom idea we don’t need another magnet for the homeless unless the city plans on putting up shelters for all the bums hanging out at the park. Can’t believe we can’t cover up that drainage ditch behind the bandstand, we’ve been lucky so far that nobody has fallen and got hurt. Fence it off or let the city cover it up!

Like this comment
Posted by Bill
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Feb 7, 2019 at 5:32 pm

It's easier to get things done that people might not like, if you just go ahead and go 50% of the way there without asking.

There is a plan for the property, or they wouldn't have bought it. The folks across the street are not going to be happy.

1 person likes this
Posted by Downtowner
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 8, 2019 at 6:19 pm

So, what is the plan, then, if you claim to know? Why is it secret? Why was it not in the news story? What is your source or other verification?

I agree that it's easier to get things done if you start doing them without disclosing them in advance to people who would be affected, but that is not good public policy.

3 people like this
Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Feb 10, 2019 at 7:07 pm

Now that we own the property we can put in “stack and pack” city offices with underground parking, expand the existing PPD offices to accommodate all the new officers we can hire by not spending that 200+million on the Taj Mahal over by the Bernal sports park, and still have room left over at the end of Main st. To build more retail storefronts. Throw a little money at the library/daycare bldg for updates and maybe even toss out the homeless hanging out in the magazine section. Win/win for everybody.

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

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