Developer prepares home sales in downtown San Jose tall tower


SAN JOSE – A developer with long-standing projects in downtown San Jose is about to start selling homes in one of his high-rise apartment buildings, a welcome counterpoint to the company’s other challenges real estate.

Z&L Properties has said it is about to begin selling condominiums in one of two towers at its 188 West St. James project in downtown San Jose.

The company also said it is assessing the future of two other key projects it owns, including whether to sell the sites or continue their development.

These two key undeveloped downtown San Jose properties are:

– Park View Towers, a two-tower development with 221 residential units at 43 E. St. James St. The residences would flank the historic First Church of Christ Scientist, which must be redeveloped and restored before the project can go ahead. before.

– The old Greyhound station at 70 S. Almaden Ave., where two towers totaling 708 residential units as well as shops on the ground floor are offered. Construction work has not yet started on the site.

Chinese firm Z&L Properties, which has a local office in Foster City, is very optimistic about the start of condominium sales in the west tower of 188 W. St. James.

“The project at 188 W. St. James is one of the first condo for sale opportunities to come onto the market in some time,” said Sam Singer, Z&L spokesperson.

Those sales are currently expected to begin in September, according to Singer.

“188 West St. James is doing very well,” Singer said.

The complex has a total of 640 residential units, approximately 320 in each of the towers. The project will also include 32,000 square feet of retail space on the ground floor and will feature a large utility terrace.

Amenities, pool and gathering areas at 188 West St. James, a two-tower complex with a total of 640 homes in downtown San Jose, concept. // Z & L properties

The developer is convinced that the city center will be strengthened by projects such as Google’s district focused on public transport of offices, homes, shops, restaurants, hotel facilities, entertainment centers and cultural hubs near Diridon station. .

Z&L believes that downtown San Jose is a vibrant market that will continue to attract buyers, with growing opportunities in the area for top talent, such as the expansion of Google, as well as food and beverage offerings and entertainment like the San Pedro Square Market, ”Singer said.

Two other downtown Z&L projects face much more uncertainty than the prospects for 188 West St. James.

First Church of Christ Scientist, 43 E. St. James St. in downtown San Jose, wrapped in a large tarp. // George Avalos / Bay Area News Group

The historic church building where the Park View Towers development is planned next to St. James’s Park is currently wrapped in a tattered and torn tarp.

City officials and real estate officials are concerned about the safety of the historic church, which was built in 1905.

Fires burned historic buildings in San José twice in 2021.

In January, a fire ripped through the historic Lawrence Hotel building which housed the famous Cinebar liquor store and a few restaurants.

In June, a fire destroyed the historic HG Wade warehouse in the Alviso neighborhood of San Jose.

“We absolutely don’t want a problem to occur in church property,” said Nanci Klein, director of economic development for San Jose, in an interview earlier this week.

The church site and the Greyhound property are both areas of great concern, according to Bob Staedler, managing director of Silicon Valley Synergy, a land use planning consultancy.

“These sites are ravaged and dangerous for members of the public,” Staedler said in a previous interview. “In the case of the Greyhound site, this is dangerous for the surrounding buildings. “

At the historic church, Z&L spent $ 1.5 million to decontaminate the asbestos in the building, according to Singer.

“This building has overwhelming problems,” Singer said. “The roof of this building has problems. Z&L is doing their best to protect the church. The company is in the process of repairing the tears in the tarpaulin of the church. It is a costly undertaking to rehabilitate the church. But it is an amazing property and an amazing location.

Z&L insisted the company didn’t overlook either the church site or the site of the old Greyhound bus terminal.

Planks and fences can be seen at the Old Greyhound Bus Terminal at 70 S. Almaden Ave. in downtown San Jose. // George Avalos / Bay Area News Group

“We are evaluating the options for the Greyhound site and the church site,” Singer said.

In May, Z&L divested ownership of one of its development sites, a 1.6 acre property located near the corner of Terraine Street and Bassett Street. Z & L’s plans for a large residential tower at this location were at a standstill.

An alliance led by global developer Westbank, local developer Gary Dillabough and San Jose-based Terrascape, a company run by real estate veterans Tony Arreola and Mark Lazzarini, paid $ 11.4 million for the plot. choice. The property is in a downtown area known as the North San Pedro neighborhood.

“At the moment, it’s unclear what will happen with Greyhound and the properties of the church,” Singer said. “We are looking at development. But people are also contacting us to buy the properties.

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