Developments proposed for the 400 block of San Benito Street by the Community Foundation for San Benito County and the Del Curto Brothers will go before the Hollister Planning Commission on Thursday.
The projects are returning for official consideration after controversy arose over developing the site.
The Community Foundation for San Benito County is requesting a site and architectural approval for a new 10,858 square-foot, two story “Community Building” located at 430, 434, and 438 San Benito St. in the downtown mixed-use zoning district, according to the commission agenda for the 6 p.m. Thursday meeting at Hollister City Hall, 375 Fifth St.
Del Curto Brothers is requesting a site and architectural approval for a new 30,738 square-foot, three-story, mixed-use building located at 365 Fourth St. in the downtown mixed use zoning district. The building is proposed to have eight commercial/retail units on the first floor, and a total of 22 residential units (one-bedroom and studio apartments) on the second and third floors, according to the commission agenda.
Hollister council members in June agreed to repeal a prior resolution to put a referendum on the ballot asking whether voters want allow development on the 400 block of San Benito Street.
That 4-0 vote came after the state attorney general’s office issued an opinion stating that the matter did not belong on the November 2018 ballot.
Mayor Ignacio Velazquez recused himself at the time, but has been an outspoken opponent of developing the projects neighboring his Vault building at Fifth and San Benito streets.
Council members in October 2017 approved placing the question on the ballot after a group of residents, in opposition to the proposal for a philanthropy center and mixed-use development, submitted a petition to stop the buildings from moving forward. The philanthropy center is meant to be the future home of the Community Foundation for San Benito County and other local nonprofits and will be funded by donation. The Del Curto Brothers development firm is handling the construction and was involved in pursuing the land purchase from the City of Hollister, which has owned the lot since the former redevelopment agency bought it following the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.