Land Swap also preserves 10 Acres of Future Recreation and Open Space
Redwood City, Calif.- The Redwood City City Council recently took action to advance multiple City priorities, including housing homeless residents, improving circulation and public safety, and preserving approximately 10 acres of City waterfront property for future community uses.
The City Council unanimously (Espinosa-Garnica absent) approved a property exchange of City-owned property located at 1469 Maple Street with the County of San Mateo for County-owned property located at 1580 Maple Street.
“With all of us pulling together, I believe the community impact will be powerful, positive, and long-lasting.”Melissa Stevenson Diaz, City Manager of Redwood City
Individual units over shared spacing
For Redwood City, this exchange advances construction of the Blomquist Street Extension – extending Blomquist Street from Maple Street to Bair Island Road – in the Inner Harbor area of the City. The County plans to relocate an aging and outdated homeless shelter and build the County’s first Homeless Navigation Center with 240 individual sleeping units, providing temporary living facilities and services to help people move into permanent housing. Providing individual units, rather than shared shelter space, is an important new strategy in helping unhoused individuals obtain housing and vital services.
“This property exchange advances City Council priorities going back more than a decade, including housing, transportation, recreation and economic vitality,” said Diane Howard, Mayor of Redwood City. She added, “I often hear from residents concerned about homeless individuals and encampments in Redwood City, and I am proud Redwood City is part of the solution.”
The Blomquist Extension will provide multiple benefits for residents, visitors, and employees, including:
- Improved access for emergency responders by providing a second point of entry and exit to the neighborhood
- Faster public safety response times to the northern portion of the City limits
- Improved community access to and from the Inner Harbor area and Pacific Shores (for the Bay Trail, jobs at Pacific Shores, visits to a future Bayfront park, and access to recreational waterfront activities such as rowing at the Bair Island Aquatic Center)
- Improved non-vehicular access along the Bay Trail
“This negotiation was one of the most complex of my career, and there were more than a few times when we felt stymied,” said Melissa Stevenson Diaz, City Manager of Redwood City. “With all of us pulling together, I believe the community impact will be powerful, positive, and long-lasting.”
Waterfront Recreation Opportunities
The City would still own approximately 10 acres of property adjacent to the water after the exchange. Through a robust community engagement beginning in spring 2022, the City will explore recreation, open space, water access and trail access in the area.
The City Council City Owned Property Ad Hoc Committee (Mayor Howard, Vice Mayor Hale, Councilmember Reddy) was instrumental in shaping the approved exchange. Mayor Howard added “I want to thank Vice Mayor Hale and Councilmember Reddy, as well as former Councilmembers Bain and Masur, for their time, dedication and perseverance while serving on this Ad Hoc Committee alongside me. We listened to the input of our residents and balanced many priorities. This is a win-win for Redwood City and the County.”