The San Francisco office of Perkins+Will has been selected by the City of San Mateo to update the Specific Plan for the city’s downtown.
Downtown San Mateo’s prime Silicon Valley location has long presented both challenges and opportunities. As a massive tech boom continues to course through the region, it has become critical for cities to balance their need for housing with the need to attract new businesses and ensure a vibrant central district.
Revising the Specific Plan will help San Mateo’s stakeholders find that balance. Its creation will establish a framework around which all parties can set and attain common goals. Once the new plan is adopted, it will act as a guide for the direction and priorities of future development. It will recommend strategies and policies for affordable housing and for helping local businesses grow, and set new goals that prioritize pedestrians, cyclists, public space, and transit. Such goals are especially important to a downtown blessed with a commuter-rail station yet cut in half by train tracks.
Geeti Silwal, Associate Principal at Perkins+Will, said, “We are thrilled to be doing this work. Anyone strolling through downtown San Mateo will see what is great about the city. But they may also feel that something’s missing. We’re excited to define those missing pieces and enhance the downtown experience. The influence of these changes should extend well beyond downtown.”
Perkins+Will’s urban design team has developed similar plans for over a dozen cities in California. Transportation consultants Nelson\Nygaard, strategic partners with Perkins+Will, will also be a part of the multidisciplinary team. The group is excited to begin work in December.