27 developments proposed in East Palo Alto; Jones Mortuary on the list, but spokesman says that’s wrong

Jones Mortuary at 660 Donohoe St. in East Palo Alto. Ikea is the blue building in back. Google photo.
Jones Mortuary at 660 Donohoe St. in East Palo Alto. Ikea is the blue building in back. Google photo.

Daily Post Staff Writer

Developers have submitted proposals for 27 developments in East Palo Alto including one that would replace Jones Mortuary, though a representative of the funeral home denied last night that there were any plans for the property near the Highway 101-University Avenue intersection.

“We’ve been here for 40-plus years serving the community. We wouldn’t sell out for pennies” said Michael Mackie.

He said the idea that mortuary would be redeveloped is just “rumors and vicious lies.”

Mackie said that when he and others at the mortuary hear about the property being redeveloped, they “just bust out laughing.”

But on the list of 27 proposed developments on the city of East Palo Alto’s website is a 200,000-square-foot building between eight and 14 stories at 660 Donohoe St., the address of the mortuary.

No further information about the would-be developer was available yesterday (June 12).

The list of 27 projects indicates the city has been deluged with development proposals since a building moratorium was lifted last year. The city imposed the moratorium because of a water shortage, which has been alleviated after the city bought a water allocation from Mountain View and was given one by Palo Alto.

If all 27 projects were built, the city would gain 2 million square feet of office space and nearly 800 homes.

By far the largest commercial project is a development at 2020 Bay Road, nearly Cooley Landing, where New York developer Bill Uhrig wants to build five office towers that are eight stories each. It would be 1.4 million square feet, slightly less than the 1.7-million-square-feet of office space for the Willow Village project that Facebook wants to build in Menlo Park.

When Uhrig was asked about the traffic the office complex would create, he suggested the city could start charging tolls to enter and leave East Palo Alto.

The largest housing project on the list of 27 is the redevelopment of the Woodland Park apartments at Euclid and Manhattan avenues. Developer Peter Pau of Sand Hill Property Co. wants to tear down 160 apartments and replace them with 605 apartments in buildings between four and eight stories tall.

The list includes a proposed development at the corner of University Avenue and Runnymede St. That project will comprise of 32 homes and 2,186 square feet of retail.

Another mixed use project is for 21 homes and 1,000-square-feet of retail at 2212 University.

Other projects include:

• An eight-story, 220,000-square-foot office project at 2111 University, the sister project to the Amazon building across the street.

• The school proposed by Mark Zuckerberg’s wife, Dr. Priscilla Chan, for 1200 Weeks St. Some 736 teachers and children will be at the school every day.

• At University Circle, 180,000-square-feet of office space is proposed near the Four Seasons Hotel.

• At 1650 Bay Road, a 160-room hotel is proposed where Pal Market currently located.

• Nonprofit Job Train wants to build a 100,000-square-foot office building at 2519 Pulgas Ave.

• Ten condos are proposed 717 Donohoe St., between Cooley Avenue and the Ravenswood 101 Shopping Center.

• A three-story, 37-apartment complex is proposed for 1207 Runnymede.

Already approved are 91 renovated and new apartments at the Light Tree apartment complex, 1805 East Bayshore Road.

This list did not include commercial projects under 60,000 square-feet and housing projects under 10 homes.

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    • I agree with you… Mr. Jones would not sell however those in charge now most likely will… Sad Indeed…!!

      • It is sad, but in the 47 years I’ve lived here, I’ve never liked where it is located. Maybe the Mortuary can continue in a different location and a lot more parking. I don’t like entering our city with the reminder of all the deaths that happened when were the murder capital of the world, reminder of all the gangs, drugs and the bad of our city. I know death is part of life, but it should not be the center of attention and Jones Mortuary, though I loved having Mr. Jones as my neighbor on Cooley Ave, and he was a great man indeed, the mortuary could use a new home.

        • East Palo Alto has a prime location at the corner of Bay Rd. And University Avenue (formerly Nairobi Village Shopping Center) but that prime piece of land has been dormant since the late 1970’s. What is going on with that? Meaning if Jones Mortuary were to relocate(preferably in East Palo Alto)why not that property. Just a suggestion. However I don’t blame Mr.
          Mackie for not moving. Or entertaining the idea.

  1. to make it easier for the developers, why don’t the city council get a wrecking ball to knock over all the existing buildings in E.P.A.? that will make gentrification move much faster!

    • “…asked about the traffic the office complex would create, he suggested the city could start charging tolls to enter and leave East Palo Alto.”
      Or flying ponies for everyone. I mean, if you’re going to make it someone else’s problem, why not go big?

  2. A toll to drive through East Palo Alto? Really? It doesn’t seem that long ago that we tried to avoid driving through that area because of the excessive crime rate. Is there any consideration for the quality of life for those of us who make the peninsula our home? Is this part of the price we must pay to live in an area with insane real estate appreciation? Who is going to end up living here? Certainly not the hard working accomplished professionals who built Silicon Valley. Is there a quota for the number of hours per day we must spend in gridlock on our streets and highways? The sacrifice of quality of life in one of the beautiful communities on Earth disgusts me!

  3. Just one year after they lifted the moratorium and look at these seething snakes. Your messing with the wrong people, I have been here for over 40 years and went go down without a fight

  4. So with all these propositions of rebuilding/remodeling homes, condos and apartments… what percentage will be bmr or low-income to all of the EPA natives?

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