Current Proposal - Comparison of Buildings & Scope

The two proposed major projects are still in the design phase, so the available renderings are limited. Click here to see the available renderings. When and if the proposals move forward, more specific renderings will be produced.
Community members may find it useful to view some of the graphics from the Specific Plan which, while not precisely depicting the proposals’ plans, do give a fair representation of the scope and massing (general shape and size) of the buildings. Some examples are shown below.
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In addition, community members may gain a valuable perspective by viewing some of the existing office/mixed use buildings in the area, such as the Charles Schwab building at 800 El Camino Real (56 feet height), or the Menlo Center building at 1010 El Camino Real (46 feet height). These examples are  not intended to represent precisely what is being proposed for the area, but will at least offer a sense of scale from the pedestrian and driver perspective.
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Based on community input, the Specific Plan allows for buildings up to 38 feet tall in most locations, 48 feet nearer downtown and the station area, and up to 60 feet in selected locations, principally in the station area and along the eastern side of El Camino Real south of Ravenswood Avenue. These height limits were thoroughly discussed in community workshops and at Planning Commission and City Council meetings. In a number of areas, the City Council lowered height limits that had been proposed in the Draft Specific Plan, in order to ensure compatibility with the surrounding area.
It’s important to remember, especially when viewing these rough comparisons, that the Specific Plan includes standards for maximum façade heights along public rights-of-way, sidewalks and other public spaces and sensitive areas. These limitations help to attenuate the visual effects of taller buildings. 
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For example, the top two levels of a five story building could be “stair-stepped” back from the sidewalk side, to avoid the undesirable “monolithic” form or “canyon effect.” There are many other elements in the Specific Plan guiding developers toward varied building mass and height with appropriate “façade articulation” which promotes visual interest.