By Crysta Cross
The city of Livermore will begin the first leg of their downtown revitalization plan later this spring, with the stripping of the dirt parking lot between Railroad and First Street. In place, a temporary parking lot will be constructed. Upon completion of the lot, the city will proceed with construction of a four-story hotel on the corner of Livermore Ave and Railroad west of the Bankhead Theater.
The community newsletter stated that, “based on feedback from hotel experts”, this position gives it the best “opportunity for synergy” with the surrounding restaurants and the Bankhead. Due to the lack of luxury hotels in Livermore, artists, performers and celebrities have stayed at the Rose Hotel in Pleasanton when visiting the area.
The new hotel would provide guests with a better, closer option to the bustling downtown of Livermore. It would also allocate a classy alternative for tourists visiting our wine country.
The hotel will have several meeting rooms and a private open space rooftop to use, in hopes of increasing the traffic of the Silicon Valley sector.
One of the most important things to the Livermore community is the historical preservation of downtown. With that goal in mind, Livermore representatives are keeping the historic Blacksmith Square and adding more retail and restaurant spaces along Livermore Avenue.
These businesses will fit in with the overall design of Blacksmith Square, with intention to surround a 3.5-acre park, named Stockmen’s Park. The park will include public art and information on Livermore’s ranching and farming history.
The final two stages of the revitalization project consist of the science and society center, to be named Livermorium Plaza, and new housing for the area.
The downtown sites were purchased with funds from the city’s housing budget, which leaves the city with the obligation to construct housing or repay the fund, where the city chose the latter.
The housing will be on the corner of Railroad and L Street with four buildings, each 3 to 4 stories tall for a total of 130 units. This has not been finalized, so the plans may change as construction progresses.
The overall goal of the downtown rejuvenation project is to bring in more tourism to boost the local economy, as well as community pride. This, in turn will make the city of Livermore a true extension of Silicon Valley and competitive in the tech industry, while keeping to its humble roots.