San Jose Stage Company Poised to Buy SoFA District Theater

The San Jose Stage Company, which has operated out of the SoFA District theater for nearly two decades, is poised to buy the facility outright. San Jose’s City Council on Tuesday will consider the sale, which would transfer the property to the performing arts nonprofit for $2.3 million.

Downtown Councilman Raul Peralez applauded the move.

“While we welcome new development into the area, any measures that can be taken to preserve artistic businesses and organizations should be priority,” he wrote in a council memo. “The San Jose Stage Company has been a staple in the SoFA community, hosting theatrical performances for adults and families alike. By approving this sale and placing the property in the hands of the Stage Company, we can continue to ensure that while our arts district evolves with development, the arts itself will remain intact.”

San Jose’s now-defunct Redevelopment Agency bought the property at 490 S. First St. in 1999 and has leased it to the stage company until 2013, when it got bumped to a month-to-month plan. But after California eliminated its redevelopment agencies in 2011, San Jose handed the property over to a successor agency tasked with selling off all remaining redevelopment properties.

In 2014, the city’s redevelopment successor—called SARA—asked the San Jose Stage Company if it wanted to buy the property. The nonprofit theater company took up the offer and hired an appraiser, who pegged the value of the site at about $1 million.

That seemed a little too low for the SARA board, whose own appraiser came up with a value of $2.3 million. SARA approved the sale at that price in late April. Now it’s up to the various local agencies comprising SARA to authorize the transaction.

More from the San Jose City Council agenda for May 15, 2018:

  • The city plans to build an all-inclusive playground for children with disabilities at Emma Prusch Farm Park. The project will require $1.5 million from the city, $2 million from Santa Clara County and another $2 million in private donations.
  • Council members will consider awarding $10.5 million to Pavement Coatings Co. to repave 69 miles of major roadways in San Jose. Though nearly 40 percent over the engineer-estimated project cost, Pavement Coatings Co. was still the lowest of five bidders, according to the San Jose Department of Transportation.

WHAT: City Council meets
WHEN: 1:30pm Tuesday
WHERE: City Hall, 200 E. Santa Clara St., San Jose
INFO: City Clerk, 408.535.1260

Jennifer Wadsworth is the former news editor for San Jose Inside and Metro Silicon Valley. Follow her on Twitter at @jennwadsworth.

One Comment

  1. Two appraisers with valuations so far apart that one must wonder which of the two is incompetent. Jennifer, why did you not identify both of them?

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