SAN JOSE (KRON) — South Bay homeless and affordable housing advocates are taking aim at Google on Thursday.
They’re upset with details of the company’s tentative plans to buy up land and bring thousands of new jobs to downtown San Jose.
Now, critics of the plan are making some demands. Critics have already taken to calling the plan “Googleville.”
They say that if and when Google comes to town with 20,000 jobs, the company had better make sure it sets aside some funds for affordable housing.
Forced into homeless by the lack of affordable housing, Mercy Wong pitched her tent in what she and community activists have taken to calling Googleville.
They are worried about Google’s plans to buy up the land around Diridon Station and build some 8 million square feet of office space.
“What’s going to happen is that we’ll have 20,000 Google employees come in and a lot of them will be well paid and the well-paid ones will be at the top of the housing market, and they’ll push 20,000 people out of the bottom of the market, and we think that’s wrong,” Head of the Affordable Housing Network Sandy Perry said.
Affordable housing and homeless activists are calling on Google to provide 20,000 low-income housing units as part of the company’s plans to expand into downtown San Jose.
Partnering with the City of San Jose, Google’s ambitious plans, which would coincide with the arrival of BART, the electrification of Caltrain, and high-speed rail have already touched off a real estate boom in the area.
Critics say the poor are being left out.
“Apple went into Cupertino and built the spaceship and created a demand for 9,000 housing units, and they contributed what amounts to a pittance to the housing fund, and we don’t want that to happen here in San Jose,” Perry said.
Google is said to be interested in the parcel at the corner of Park and Montgomery.
Virtually all of the mostly commercial and industrial parcels between there and HP Pavillion are said to be on the market or already spoken for.
KRON4 reached out to Google for comment but the company did not immediately respond.
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