Developers hope commission will jump aboard residences

A condominium project onDelaware Street, designed to get residents to make use of the nearby Caltrain station, is the first to make full use of city guidelines for transit-oriented development, according to planning officials.

Secure bicycle storage, a low-tech kiosk with train and bus schedules, high-bandwidth Internet connections, a gym, video-conferencing center and pedestrian-friendly design are all features of Delaware Place, a 111-unit condo project set for a San Mateo Planning Commission vote tonight. It is the first project to truly implement the rail corridor transit plan approved by the City Council last year, city associate planner Lisa Ring said.

The 2.37-acre project on South Delaware Street is a quarter of a mile from the Hayward Caltrain station and half a mile from the Hillsdale station’s fast-connecting Baby Bullet trains, according to Mark Hirth, a project manager with Toll Brothers, the project applicant. The company plans to sell the units for $750,000 to $850,000, with 11 reserved as below-market-rate residences. The site formerly was home to a printing and lithograph company.

The project has met with some resistance from its nearest neighbors at the Ironwood condos, an industrially designed complex more than a decade old. Some residents there worry that the height of the three- to four-store Delaware Place project would shadow their homes, and that its deliberately limited parking would lead to crowded streets. In response, the company reduced the number of condos from 143 to 111, increased the parking area and set three courtyards between the two developments to add more light.

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