Google unveils new plans for a 'city-within-a-city' in San Jose to base 25,000 ...

Google on Wednesday released its most detailed plans yet for a San Jose 'city-within-a-city' development that will add 7.3million square feet of office space and 4,000 homes to the downtown area.

The Google village, named Downtown West, would include shops, restaurants, a hotel, and cultural and entertainment hubs, as well as potentially acting as the campus for 25,000 Google employees.  

The internet giant has continued with its plans for the development despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic that saw them transition to a work from home model in spring. 

The company in July decided that it will keep its employees working from home until at least July 2021, affecting 200,000 full-time and contract employees across its parent company Alphabet. 

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An artist's sketch of Google's Downtown West development in San Jose

An artist's sketch of Google's Downtown West development in San Jose

The return date for employees had originally been scheduled for June of this year.   

If employees do return to Google offices next summer, Downtown West may still only be in its planning and review phases. 

The company has not given an expected building start date as the planning process may be even further delayed as a result of the pandemic. 

Google submitted its initial application to the San Jose planning division on October 10, 2019.

On Wednesday, they submitted updated plans in two major documents, officials said.  

Google submitted a plan Wednesday detailing how the area would maintain 'core character'

Google submitted a plan Wednesday detailing how the area would maintain 'core character'

The company submitted the more detailed plan this week which showed its idea for the green spaces and parks in the area. At least 30 acres will be for homes and public spaces

The company submitted the more detailed plan this week which showed its idea for the green spaces and parks in the area. At least 30 acres will be for homes and public spaces

One was a a 1,350-page draft environmental impact report, while the other details the design guidelines and how the buildings would be massed. 

The final environmental review is projected to be submitted before the city moves into a decision-making phase by summer 2021. 

Public hearings will be held online during this process, as well as formal votes . 

'We embrace this vision not because it's Google's, but because it encompasses the aspirations for a vibrant, dynamic downtown that our community has long held, as generations of San Joseans have sought to create a regional destination reflective of our authentic, diverse character,' San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo said, according to Mercury News. 

'Particularly amid all the challenges of this pandemic, I'm grateful for the persistent collaboration between Google and city staff to enable our community to benefit from thousands of jobs, affordable apartments, vibrant retail and restaurants, public plazas, and park space.' 

The company has also planned for cultural and entertainment hubs

The company has also planned for cultural and entertainment hubs

The improved plans detailed the zoning for the Downtown West development

The improved plans detailed the zoning for the Downtown West development 

'We're excited about this next step in our project, which incorporates feedback from thousands of people over the last two years and provides another opportunity for community input,' added Alexa Arena, Google's development director for San Jose. 

The Downtown West area in San Jose covers 80 acres, 55 of which can be developed.  

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