Google’s “Downtown West” proposal is Google’s fist mix-used campus, comprising of 80 sprawling acres in downtown San Jose.
Sitelab Urban Studio
Google‘s path to its massive tech campus planning in San Jose began with activists chaining themselves to chairs inside City Hall over the city’s decision to sell public land to the tech giant. It ended with some of its biggest opponents signing its praises.
Last month, the San Jose City Council approved Google’s plan for a mixed-use megacampus that spans 80 acres and 7.3 million square feet of office space in the heart of California’s third-largest city. To win over critics, Google designated more than half of its campus to public use and offered up a $200 million community benefits package that includes displacement funds, job placement training, and power for community leaders to influence how it’s spent.
“It’s certainly a much different process in the end versus what we saw at the beginning with regards to community and labor movement,” said Jeffrey Buchanan, director of public policy for San Jose-based community coalition Working Partnerships USA.
“It was a reminder of how organizing works and matters,” said nonprofit Silicon Valley Rising director Maria Noel Fernandez. “Now, it really does feel like a partnership.”
The successful partnership comes as tech giants like Google, Facebook and Amazon seek to expand their real estate footprint around the country while residents complain of displacement. It comes two years after Amazon…