New Fremont Development Around Future Transit Site Becoming Reality

Fremont_Thermo_Fisher_aerialThis rare instance of open land in Silicon Valley is now closer to becoming the bustling transit-oriented employment center the City of Fremont hopes it will be. Lennar Corporation was selected as the developer of a 112-acre parcel of land (owned by Union Pacific) in the Warm Springs District (home to under-construction Bay Area Rapid Transit Station, or BART), and they will not only develop housing, but also commercial real estate for additional jobs. Another company who bought land from Union Pacific in the future Innovation District, Thermo Fisher Scientific, is completing their manufacturing facility in a southern parcel of the District, and is set to finish by the end of July.

Developers to Transition Fremont’s Warm Springs District

On June 2nd, the City of Fremont officially announced that Lennar Corp. was chosen for the largest development opportunity in the area (the parcel is adjacent to Tesla Motors Inc. and the upcoming BART station), and the City described the company as a good fit because of its national expertise and specialization in multiple product types including single-family and multi-family residential and commercial real estate. The Warm Spring Community Plan calls for the 112-acre development to include a new boulevard which will connect Fremont Boulevard to the Warm Springs/South Fremont BART station, and significant space for commercial offices, research and development, residential and retail uses. According to the City, this development activity will lead to more than 20,000 more jobs and almost 4,000 new housing units.

Other new investors plan to develop key parcels adjacent to the future BART station. One national homebuilder, Toll Brothers, is in the early stages of developing 34 acres next to the BART station that would bring about 1,000 new homes, and another developer, Valley Oak Partners, is looking at a parcel north of the proposed Lennar development for a residential project. Construction of the 112-acre Lennar site is set to begin in early 2016, after the opening of the new Warm Springs BART station in December 2015.

General Information on the Warm Springs District

In 2010, the City of Fremont initiated the planning process for the 879 acres in South Fremont. With the closing of the New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. plant,  it was Tesla Motor’s subsequent purchase of the plant that helped to secure the Warm Springs area as a major employment region. With the Thermo Fisher Scientific new research and development facility, and the commercial potential of the Lennar land deal, Warm Springs is set to become a high density, mixed-use region that will provide jobs along with housing. A portion of the Lennar parcel will also contain a new elementary school.

Transit-oriented development is really becoming a trend here, especially because of the new BART extensions coming to the South Bay (Milpitas and San Jose) in 2017. This is leading to great developer interest around the under-construction BART stations, such as Citation Homes making plans for housing development right across from the future Milipitas BART station. If you are interested in developing in the Bay Area, then transit-oriented development may be the way to go!

Resources:

“Lennar buying 100 acres as developers encircle Fremont’s new BART station,” Silicon Valley Business Journal

“Developer Selected for 112-acre Union Pacific Parcel Adjacent to BART in Fremont’s Warm Springs District,” City of Fremont Press Release

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