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335 S Winchester Blvd, San Jose, California, 95128
Verse Design LA worked in collaboration with the private developer to identify the opportunities for development at 335 S. Winchester, a site next to a wildly successful outdoor shopping center (Santana Row) in San Jose. While located directly across the street from Santana Row, the project site, like its neighboring parcels, suffered from the decay of a single-story building with small tenants and an empty parking lot. Through our thorough feasibility analyses, we completed detailed zoning analysis and building layout for several by-right and variant programs, including (4) scenarios consisting of micro-units and live-work units.
The zoning code was found to be out of sync with the City’s densification goals. As a result of the feasibility study, we outlined two viable development scenarios – one with a minimum required number of housing units and the other a Class A office building with a ground floor retail program. At the time, the Planning Department maintained the zoning classification, forcing the developer to abandon the housing plan in favor of a by-right Class A office building.
Since then, the City of San Jose has revisited its zoning approach for this area and connected with Verse Design LA and its client in the fall of 2022 to develop a housing project on the site. This is an example of Verse Design LA’s ability to critically evaluate a site’s potential, weighing financial, market, and local agencies’ needs to find solutions that are outside of the parameters prescribed by the code.