OCTOBER 16, 2020
Sweeping Burlingame development advances
The Daily Journal
Officials favor 298-unit development with park identified as linchpin for emerging neighborhood.
A key project expected to open the door for development of a new neighborhood in north Burlingame received glowing reviews from officials who blessed construction of 298 apartments near the Millbrae border.
The Burlingame Planning Commission unanimously approved, by a 4-0 vote with three commissioners absent, plans submitted from SummerHill Apartment Communities to construct a sweeping residential development and new park at 30 Ingold Road.
The development, which still needs a final approval from councilmembers, is expected by officials to help the area north of Broadway transform into a residential hub where additional, similar projects are planned to follow along Rollins Road.
“I think it is a really well-crafted project,” said Commissioner Will Loftis, who added he believed the development featured some essential urban design elements and characteristics for a new neighborhood.
Commissioner Michael Gaul too praised the plans for the seven-story building.
“I think this is a great project, especially for this area,” he said.
Plans make way for 217 one-bedroom units and 81 two-bedroom units with 43 of the total units set aside for those earning 80% of the area median income. There will be 329 parking spaces, with 15 designated for guests and 14 to accommodate the 4,000 square feet of commercial space in the ground floor of the building.
There is also about 18,000 square feet of park land planned in the more than 3-acre site, and the open space will be granted to the city once the project is built. Additionally, the proposal features a public plaza near the park on Ingold Road.
Officials have said the park will be a valued amenity in the area which has been identified as home to a burgeoning neighborhood in the northern portion of Burlingame. Officials are optimistic the area is primed for development due to its proximity to the Millbrae joint Caltrain and BART station.
“I’m really excited about a new park for residents in Burlingame,” said Gaul.
Commissioner Richard Sargent too shared his enthusiasm for the development, with an anticipation for additional development nearby.
“I look forward to seeing whatever else gets built,” he said.
Officials late last month discussed strategies for converting the region traditionally reserved for industrial businesses into a new neighborhood. Officials favored a mix of uses in the area, preserving space for existing companies while enhancing it to draw residential and other commercial developers.
To make the area more accommodating, commissioners called for better sidewalks and bike lanes for residents and pedestrians, while requesting aesthetic improvements such as additional open space, public art and landscaping. While some officials favored the plans, others wanted to assure that the industrial businesses in the area will not be squeezed out.
To appropriately address the divergent interests, officials launched a public outreach campaign designed to collect feedback from residents, merchants and other community members seeking to shape the future of the north Rollins Road area.
As plans evolve, SummerHill is also building 290 units in a development more than 1 mile away at 1008 Carolan Ave., in a project including an apartment building and condominiums. And less than 1 mile away, the company is constructing 265 units at 1 Adrian Court, in a project abutting Highway 101. The other two projects are the largest residential developments recently proposed in Burlingame, prior to the Ingold Road plans being submitted.
Regarding the development at Ingold Road, Gaul shared his appreciation for the plans and the future of the site.
“I think it is a great project,” he said. “It is very well designed and I look forward to getting this thing off the ground.”
Commissioners Richard Terrones, Sandy Comaroto and Audrey Tse were absent from the meeting.
By Austin Walsh Daily Journal staff