Information and history about each of the buildings on this stretch of South First Street.
The Uniqueness of Character
This row of buildings has remained unchanged for a hundred years, and they represent an entire block of the South First Street area that is quaint, beloved, and much frequented.
We're not talking about a forgotten row of decrepit old industrial buildings in an area where nobody travels. This is a bustling area of the city and these buildings have run businesses and housed many successes for one decade upon another.
We don't need another condominium tower here. If there is an argument to be made for more housing Downtown, then a supplementary argument can just as easily be be made in favor of placing it in another location — one that is more appropriate for a city that claims to cherish and protect its history.
Red Front Surplus
This is the last stretch of First Street before exiting Downtown, and how special to have it preserved here as it is. In all its quaintness there is an enduring character that is most definitely San Jose, for most of what could be called the "Original City" Downtown was demolished in the 20th century, and to have this area so intact is quite exceptional.
We Represent History
Garden City Glass
The Garden City Glass Building was constructed about 1815, many decades before California came under United States control, and many decades before what are today the oldest buildings in the city.
For us to raze this precious and rare piece of our city’s history would be as unthinkable as destroying a piece of its technological beginnings and achievements. Why is putting a housing tower downtown at this exact location so important that we have no consideration for destroying what we already have?
- Three of the buildings have been placed on the city’s Historic Resource Inventory.
- Herrold's Laboratory has been designated as City Landmark No. 74, and is also eligible for enlistment on both the State and National Register.
- The above mentioned building is an important San Jose location and structure, and a historic place without a doubt. It is where inventions and developments were made toward Radio Broadcasting and other areas of Wireless Technology, having been constructed as the laboratory of “Doc” Charles Herrold, considered the father of Radio Broadcasting in that he was the first to broadcast regularly scheduled programs to a local audience.
- Among these buildings is San Jose’s second oldest structure, built many decades before many of the city's existing buildings. It was constructed way back in 1815 according to the city's Historic Resource Inventory.
- This row of buildings is the middle portion of an unbroken link that is the South First Street Art's District. The majority of the buildings along this three block district have been here for roughly 100 years, and much longer in some cases. Taking down the middle of three blocks would in essence sever that vital connection.
- The area is profoundly "human scale" and a housing tower would not integrate well into the present atmosphere given the potential for its dramatic offset in elevation to overwhelm the remainder of the street.
1899 Brick Italianate with rare contrasting Convex and Concave Bay Windows
Voices Resound Together!
We need to start being more resourceful, and looking in our own backyard for answers. We've got wonderful buildings, and the people and ideas to fill them. Community doesn't simply exist by default. When citizens get involved by providing feedback and alternatives, then community is born.
Let's work together and develop new housing in a way that moves the city's plans forward while keeping the fabric of our city's history intact.
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