By Jacob Bourne
A pre-application was filed by BRIDGE Housing on December 5 for a 68-unit affordable housing complex at 2775 South Delaware Street in San Mateo. The development opportunity site is a one-acre parcel in Bay Meadows adjacent to the Nueva School. BRIDGE was unanimously chosen by San Mateo City Council last year to develop affordable housing on the site with LMS Architects working on the design. The project is geared to create housing for families earning between 30 and 50-percent of the area’s median income. Revised plans were submitted on March 31.
“The site location in the new Bay Meadows development is an incredible opportunity to provide housing to lower income families in San Mateo in a transit oriented and amenity rich location,” commented Ali Gaylord, director of development, Northern California, BRIDGE Housing. “The site is walkable to grocery stores, parks, and when the grade separation at 28th Avenue is complete, will tie in directly to the commercial and job centers along El Camino Real.”
As Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects designed the Nueva School, the firm was selected for the Bay Meadows affordable housing project to create architectural continuity with the neighboring school. The building is expected to meet the design standards of the Bay Meadows Specific Plan Area and provide a seamless gateway to the neighborhood from the South Delaware and 28th Avenue access points. Important design elements include breaks in the substantial horizontal massing, setbacks above the third floor and a combination of overhanging flat and sloping roof segments.
The proposed 45-foot building will provide 76,171 square feet within four stories over subterranean parking. Units will range from studios to three-bedrooms, with ample numbers of two and three-bedrooms units able to accommodate families. Building amenities include a roof deck, lobby, community room, multipurpose room, laundry facility and podium courtyard with wind protection. The community room will be located on the ground floor and feature a “storefront” facade to enhance the corner of South Delaware Street and 28th Avenue. The location is also in very close proximity to Hillsdale Caltrain, Hillsdale Shopping Center and Bay Meadows Park.
“The development will exceed requirements for Title 24, and will include features such as solar hot water, passive shading, and water and energy efficient appliances inside resident units,” described Gaylord. “The building features indoor community gathering spaces, as well as a landscaped courtyard with children’s play area. The property will feature ample secured bicycle parking in order to encourage alternate modes of transportation.”
In a March press release, the Housing Endowment and Regional Trust of San Mateo County announced a $500,000 loan to BRIDGE to help pay predevelopment expenses. The project’s total cost is reportedly about $50 million.
“Financing for affordable housing is always difficult to obtain, so we are pleased that HEART was able to provide this key funding,” said Supervisor Don Horsley, Chair of the HEART board. “I was particularly pleased that HEART was able to coordinate with developers and City staff to quickly assess the project and provide the funding within three weeks of the application. Quick turnaround makes a difference for important projects such as this.”
“We hope to receive all planning approvals by the end of 2017 and begin construction in 2018,” Gaylord offered. “We plan on applying for Measure K funding for this development when the notice of funding availability is released by the County later this spring.”
San Mateo County’s Measure K was approved by voters last November. It continues a 0.5-percent sales tax to fund County services such as affordable housing, public transit, infrastructure, healthcare and other community initiatives.