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County of Santa Clara Issues Request for Qualifications for Civic Center Development

Public and Private Development Possible Near Downtown San Jose
SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. – The County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors released a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to recruit developers to partner with the County in the process of redeveloping a 55-acre County-owned property that includes the 10-acre former City of San Jose City Hall property.
The purpose of the RFQ is to gauge developer interest and qualifications to assist the County in establishing a long-term site development plan which integrates both public facilities and private development on the property. The qualified developers should demonstrate the following
·        Successful development of complex sites in an urban setting;
·        A history of actively engaging the community;
·        Expertise in obtaining local entitlements;
·        Experience working with buildings eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places; and
·        Experience in the design and programming of governmental complexes.
“The size of the site and its proximity to downtown San Jose, shopping, and access to transit provide a good opportunity for the County to create a unique urban village,” said President Ken Yeager, County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors.  “We have an opportunity to reshape the civic center in a way that improves government efficiency while benefitting the surrounding neighborhood.”
The County government facilities to be developed will include operations, administration, judicial and correctional uses. Over half of the existing buildings on the property are more than 40 years old, and many require upgrades. At completion, the development could include 600,000-1,175,000 square-foot governmental office space.
The principle private sector development opportunities are in the area bounded by North First Street, West Mission Street, North San Pedro Street, and West Younger Avenue, where the County Government Center, former San Jose City Hall, and a County Health Building are currently located. The City of San Jose is willing to consider rezoning for the best use of the property.
The qualified developer is required to be able to prepare a flexible, market-driven, mixed-use master plan; prepare high-level site development phasing plan and financing plan; and convey property.
“The Request for Qualifications is very thorough,” said Supervisor Dave Cortese, District 3. “I support taking the effort to the next step because this property can become a significant asset for the entire community.”
On April 3, 2013, the County of Santa Clara held the first community meeting at the County Government Center to inform the public and receive feedback about the County's objectives for the future use and development of the Civic Center. Participants expressed the desire to improve the quality of life for the existing residents, improve the variety of retail businesses, as well as a plan to address any concerns regarding safety issues.
“We encourage public input to this decision-making process,” said Bruce Knopf, Office of Economic Development Director. “This recent public meeting was just the beginning of our efforts to reach out and keep stakeholders engaged. We recently launched a new website devoted to this project so that members of the public can track progress and help us ensure that we make highest and best use of the property.”
For the RFQ and schedule, go to:, or call David Barry, Senior Facilities Architect, and project manager for the Civic Center Master Plan, at (408)993-4645. On May 15, 2013, from 9:30 am to 10:30 am, at the County’s Government Center, 70 West Hedding Street, Lower Conference Room, the County will host a pre-submittal conference to go over the requirements of the RFQ, answer any questions, as well as give a brief tour of the project site area. The Statement of Qualifications must be received no later than 3 p.m. on Friday, July 19, 2013 to be considered.
In July 2011, the County took possession of the former City of San Jose City Hall Complex. The acquisition provided an opportunity for the County to re-evaluate the Civic Center and its relationship with the communities it serves. In early 2013, the County acquired the former Private George L. Richey, U. S Army Reserve at San Pedro and Hedding streets for a County Regional Law Enforcement Training and First Responder Readiness Center. The recent acquisitions and the County’s ownership of the majority of lands in the vicinity of the Civic Center prompted a study about the potential for development of the City Hall building, as well as the feasibility of consolidating government functions.
In December 2012, the County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance authorizing the possible lease, sale, joint development or other disposition of the 55-acre County-owned property for the purposes of public, residential, commercial, industrial, or cultural use development.
Media Contact:  Gwendolyn Mitchell/Lingxia Meng, Office of Public Affairs (408) 299-5119; Bruce Knopf, Office of Asset and Economic Development Director (408) 299-5155
Posted: May 2, 2013