Downtown San Jose property owners have overwhelmingly agreed to continue funding a special-benefit assessment district that its members say helps keep the area cleaner, friendlier and more attractive.
Ninety-one percent of the district's approximately 600 property owners last week voted in favor of a new 10-year agreement, beginning Jan. 1, for an annual assessment total of $2.2 million.
The nonprofit property-based improvement district, which began services in January 2008, is known for funding Groundwerx clean teams that keep downtown streets and pedestrian areas clear of graffiti and debris. Its ambassadors walk the district and assist in deterring nuisance crimes, while providing concierge service to visitors, residents and employees. And its street-beautification projects include tree trimming and installing decorative lighting, planters, hanging flower baskets and murals.
The group's property owners plan to contract with San Jose police officers for additional security. They also will collaborate with shelters and social service workers to help the homeless in the area. They're developing a plan to fill downtown office and retail vacancies, and working with small businesses on tenant improvement and city permit issues.
The district is bounded by Fourth Street and the San Jose City Hall complex to the east, St. James and Devine Streets to the north, Highway 87 and HP Pavilion to the west, and Market and First Streets south