By Natalie Nagy
Donut Delite, a long time retail business in downtown San Mateo, may soon be redeveloped with a larger commercial office project. Recently, Harvest Properties submitted a preliminary planning application for a new office development to take its place at 31 – 57 S. B Street.
Initially submitted to the Planning Commission in December of last year, the development team has met with the City several times since. Most recently, the Planning Commission held a study session for the project on May 10. A presentation shared with the Planning Commission on April 11 also showed plans for the four-story mixed-use building. In total, the presentation showed plans for the project include the construction of an approximately 41,799 square foot building with on- and off-site improvements, such as ground-level and terrace landscaping, a corner retail plaza and expanded sidewalks to enhance the pedestrian experience.
Harvest Properties, the developer, plans to work with RMW Architecture and Interiors as well as Place landscaping for the building’s design. Since Donut Delite has been an essential part of the community for the last 120 years, RMW plans to build on and celebrate the history of the site by creating a unique and innovative design.
“The prominent location of Donut Delite in front of the Caltrain depot sets the tone for the entire Downtown and presents a unique opportunity for us to work with the City to extend Main Street to the alleyway between the building and Caltrain, creating a sense of place, purpose and arrival,” Harvest Properties stated in the project presentation.
According to Harvest Properties, the brick base of the building is what will showcase the surrounding neighborhood and some of the earlier architecture near the site. The property will also have curtain walls on the fourth and fifth levels that fade into the sky to display the natural timber material, according to the Harvest Properties pre-application community meeting summary. The landscape design on both the ground floor and terraces will be used to soften the building’s prominent appearance.
“Members of our team, including at the Partner level, are residents of San Mateo and are passionate about our commitment to improving the downtown for all community members,” project plans state.
Harvest Properties was founded in 2003 and is based in Oakland. The company has experience owning and operating Bay Area real estate since the 1960s. Harvest and its partners have their headquarters based in San Mateo, and the organization has entitled 290 entry-level homes across 15 acres in San Mateo.
Although plans for the project include the demolition of Donut Delite, there is discussion of the store coming back to the redeveloped property.
“We will try to keep them there as long as possible and see where the project lands,” Harvest Properties stated in the Harvest Properties pre-application community meeting summary. “We are totally open to having the conversation.”