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Redwood City - Downtown Revitalization Strategy and Precise Plan

Client: City of Redwood City

The Redwood City Downtown Revitalization Strategy & Precise Plan is guiding investment and change in this rapidly growing 190-acre city center at the heart of Silicon Valley. New retail and entertainment destinations, art and cultural opportunities and infill housing are combining with improved transit infrastructure, enhanced streets and lively public spaces to create an exciting centerpiece for the city and region.

Depot Circle will be Downtown’s transit hub, containing its train station, new retail and transit-oriented design.
 

Before

El Camino Real and Sequoia Station were cut off from downtown by the train tracks and their "no man's land" of parking lots.

  • An historic city center and county seat with magnificent public and historic building stock.
  • Almost no downtown housing existed; retail was underperforming; and there was little to no pedestrian activity.
  • Existing train and bus stations were in close proximity but felt cut off from the Downtown.
  • The Downtown district was built before the age of the shopping mall and strip center; it was significantly oversized for the contemporary retail landscape.

Assignment

  • Bring activity and sales back to the flagging Downtown Core.
  • Integrate planning for downtown with planned enhancements to regional commuter rail.
  • Develop solutions to the problem of frequent high speed trains moving through the district at grade.
  • Prepare development standards and design guidelines to insure that new development fits in sensitively with the best existing and historic development.
  • Add to the number and types of public spaces on offer in Downtown.

Outcomes

Adopted in 2007; updated in 2011.

  • Planning work began in October 2003.  The Precise Plan was adopted by the City in May 2007. A revised version per an updated EIR (by others) was adopted in January 2011. The Plan's recommended Courthouse Square and Cinema Streetscape improvements (also designed by FTS) were completed in 2006.
  • The Plan was recognized with a 2007 Grand Boulevard Initiative Award and a 2008 Northern Section, California Chapter of the American Planning Association Award for Comprehensive Planning, Small Jurisdiction.
  • Over 1,100 new downtown dwelling units (all privately financed) have been processed under the plan since 2011, representing more housing than had been constructed in downtown over the preceding five decades.  In addition, over 300,000 square feet of new downtown office space is under development.

In collaboration with:

Korve Engineering and The Concord Group