Innovative retail destination reinvented in Market-San Pedro Garage, continuing people-first development efforts in downtown San Jose
SAN JOSE (April 30, 2018) – With the conversion of parking into micro-retail shops at the Market-San Pedro Garage completed, four locally owned retailers will be part of the new destination’s grand opening May 18.
The shops collectively will be known as MOMENT at San Pedro Squared.
MOMENT exercises a new approach to retail that allows temporary shops to coalesce with traditional brick-and-mortar experiences.
“We want MOMENT to serve as a platform for small businesses to make the leap from part-time to full-time,” said Kevin Biggers, chief strategist for San Jose Made, which is curating the vendors and managing the spaces for San Jose Downtown Association.
The conversion of parking spaces into retail shops was called San Pedro Squared because it adds activation and street life to the garage side of San Pedro Street on one of downtown’s most popular blocks.
The SJDA proposal to turn 12 parking spots on the San Pedro Square side of the garage into four 400-square-foot business spaces was a winner of the 2015 Knight Cities Challenge, an initiative of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation that seeks to make the cities where Knight invests more vibrant places to live and work.
“The parking garage has been transformed into a vibrant venue that promises to bring new life to the community and serve as a destination for residents of all kinds to meet and connect,” said Danny Harris, Knight Foundation program director for San Jose. “The new MOMENT retail stores are a great example of people-first development, aiming to address resident needs and advance the economic vitality of the neighborhood.”
The Knight Foundation, along with the Downtown San Jose Property-Based Improvement District (PBID) and City of San Jose – owners of the garage – funded the project, including a new parklet that extends along the sidewalk into a seating and social area in front of the shops. The parklet replaced five street parking spaces.
“With MOMENT, the entire block of San Pedro between St. John and Santa Clara streets becomes more active at the perfect time when new residential developments around the square near completion,” said Chuck Hammers, PBID president.
The initial roster of MOMENT tenants includes four women-owned businesses:
Bobo Design Studio: Angie Chua has created a lifestyle wanderlust brand featuring brilliant designs crafted on everything from pins and patches to bags and graphic apparel, handcrafted and made in California. bobodesignstudio.com
Fractal Flora: Through Fractal Flora, Yuri Lee and Sarah Lim have a mission to reconnect people to nature, be it through their wonderful curation and care for the plants and flowers they sell or their popular DIY terrarium workshops. fractalflora.com
Blooms Privé: Sarah Coronado and Marie Coronado of Blooms Privé have created the next evolution of women’s underwear (patent-approved), prioritizing an empowering and inventive design for women anywhere. bloomsprive.com
Sea Senorita Studios: For Sea Senorita Studios, Sofia Arredondo uses her incredible artwork to power a diverse range of products, featuring everything from paper goods to T-shirts to accessories. seasenoritastudios.tumblr.com/
“For small business owners like myself, MOMENT provides an opportunity for us to get back into our community, engage with our customers and build a presence that is increasingly more difficult to do online,” said Angie Chua of Bobo Design Studio, a San Jose native who quit her job in a tech-based startup to pursue her dreams as a creative business owner.
San Pedro Squared was designed by Gensler and Eaton Hall Architecture, and built by TICO Construction. The project’s evolution has been documented at sanpedrosquaredsj.com.
“This project achieves a number of collective community objectives – incubating local talent, transforming the public realm and creating a cluster of destination retail in our city center,” said Blage Zelalich, downtown manager in the city’s Office of Economic Development. “We’re confident that MOMENT is going to be great for San Pedro Square and downtown San Jose.”
Established in August 2007 and managed by the San Jose Downtown Association, the Property-Based Improvement District (PBID) provides cleaning and tree-trimming services, beautification and street life projects, downtown ambassadors and secondary police enforcement units, and business development assistance. http://sjdowntown.com
MOMENT is a set of four dynamic micro-retail spaces designed and programmed to advance, grow and celebrate creative retail. Powered by San Jose Made, MOMENT embodies the urgency, immediacy and verve of today’s new retail and creative culture, featuring makers, creatives, artists and emerging brands for varying short-to-mid-length durations. The first four shopkeepers will occupy the spaces through August 2018. Visit moment-sj.com
About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Knight Foundation is a national foundation with strong local roots. We invest in journalism, in the arts, and in the success of cities where brothers John S. and James L. Knight once published newspapers. Our goal is to foster informed and engaged communities, which we believe are essential for a healthy democracy. For more, visit http://knightfoundation.org.
About the San José Department of Transportation
The San José Department of Transportation (DOT) plans, develops, operates, and maintains transportation facilities, services, and related systems that contribute to the livability and economic health of the city. Our goal is to provide a transportation system that is safe, efficient, and convenient for all modes of transportation, and which supports San José’s livability and economic vitality.