The 600-800 blocks of Laurel are no longer adequate to handle dining and retail needs for our community, as well as the influx of visitors flocking to our lively downtown. Here are a few ideas to protect and extend our downtown:
- We should look at augmenting the downtown corridor by encouraging more retail and restaurant businesses on South Laurel Street, as we did on North Laurel.
- We should encourage mixed-use buildings that can accommodate family-friendly retail and restaurants with added on-site customer parking. This will both relieve congestion in traffic and parking in the downtown area, and stimulate additional economy and jobs.
- We need to protect North Laurel’s charm. Current zoning has set a building height limit for the 600-800 blocks of Laurel at 50 feet, and no more than four stories. While larger buildings around that area of Laurel can happen, let’s cap the height of the 600-800 blocks of Laurel at two stories to preserve the character of our core downtown area.
- East San Carlos has a thriving and growing new biotech hub, many small businesses, and an Industrial Arts Zone – together these create a new ecosystem for restaurants and retail, and can serve to distribute traffic across the city. By encouraging more restaurants and retail businesses in this area, and connecting this key neighborhood to West San Carlos via bike lanes, more well-lighted sidewalks and pocket parks, we can extend the corridor of retail and restaurants from downtown into East San Carlos.
- The city should develop a multi-year plan for our Downtown, so residents and businesses can envision the future of our retail areas and plan for their success.
Drop me a line with your thoughts and concerns about our downtown. I'd love to hear from you!