A Class A office development planned for the Peninsula city of San Carlos received unanimous city council approval on Monday night, as the Palo Alto developer Windy Hill Property Ventures looks to transform six industrial buildings bordering US Highway 101 into a modern, 528,000 square foot campus.
The nearly 8-acre site, which was constructed in the early 1970s, today is comprised of six lots with a single industrial building on each. Windy Hill assembled the lots between December 2014 and December 2015 and paid just over $25.5 million for a total of 134,187 square feet ($190 per square foot), according to public documents. A range of businesses have been located at the site, including light industrial, fitness, general office and retail uses.
Windy Hill is proposing to demolish the existing buildings, remove all existing improvements and landscaping and build a new Class A office complex. Two equally-sized office buildings would front onto Industrial Road and a parking structure would be located adjacent to Highway 101. The office buildings are mirror images of each other and each includes a floor area of 264,260; the total floor area of the office buildings is therefore 528,520 square feet. The buildings are proposed to be six stories with a height of 87’-3” to the top of the parapet and 97’- 2” to the top of the roof screen. The parking structure at the rear of the site includes three levels of below grade parking, one level at grade and two levels above grade.
“It’s a tremendously unique location given the current office demand in the general Bay Area,” said Mike Field, founder of the commercial division at Windy Hill, who is leading the development and spoke on behalf of his firm. “The project is extremely transit-oriented. If you look at travel times to and from airports, trains and to our major metropolitan cities, it’s really within the tolerances that most people are willing to drive.”
Earlier this month, the project received overwhelming support from the city’s residents during a planning commission review meeting. This support was echoed by the planning commissioners, as well. They lauded Windy Hill for their inclusive process that made citizens aware of what they were planning and for including recommendations into the agreement.
“I think you get a sense after working with developers and being on a planning commission for a while which developers are looking for a win-win and which ones are looking out for Number One, and I just wanted to say than you. I think you guys did an excellent job in trying to make a win-win for San Carlos,” said Angela Harper-Pedersen, planning commissioner, at the time.