San Pedro Street to be redeveloped into a pedestrian-friendly, open-mall layout

After a year-long trial, the plan to make the area 100% walkable is making big strides.

A rendering of what San Pedro Street would look like after redevelopment.

This is the city’s goal for San Pedro Square’s entrance after redevelopment.

Screenshot via City of San Jose

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Be prepared to never drive through San Pedro Street again.

This week, San Jose City Council unanimously voted to give preliminary approval to repave San Pedro Street into a sidewalk, reroute the parking garage exits to another street, and beautify the overall area.

The redevelopment project has been in the works since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, and will likely go through a couple phases before being fully completed.

What led up to this?

In May 2020, the San Jose Al Fresco program was introduced — which closed San Pedro Street to cars and built temporary outdoor dining spaces. This allowed San Pedro Square businesses to continue operations during the height of the pandemic.

In April 2022, the City Council voted to extend its Al Fresco initiative through June 30, 2023, after observing increased patronage — in comparison to pre-pandemic times, that is.

However, this time around, the city would keep a more watchful eye on the program’s success and potential to become permanent by conducting a one-year trial — and this brings us to today.

A sketch proposing the open-mall layout of San Pedro Street.

This is a sketch proposal of what San Pedro Street could look like after redevelopment.

What can we expect?

Along with turning the full street into a sidewalk and giving each business 10-12 ft of outdoor dining space, expect these other proposed features:

  • More trees for a natural shade canopy
  • A potential mural, and/or AI art installations
  • Painted concrete to serve as a pedestrian gateway on both sides of the street
  • A small stage and/or outdoor TVs
A rendering of what the middle of San Pedro Street could look like after redevelopment.

The city hopes that the pedestrian-friendly layout will increase foot traffic downtown.

When will it be finished?

City officials predict that the construction process will take at least 2.5 years to complete, and cost ~$9.5 million.

So, what do you think? Let us know your thoughts and they might be shared in an upcoming newsletter.

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