Update on Centennial Village & Safeway Grocery Store on ECR/Spruce

South San Francisco, CA   March 22, 2017  by SSF Resident Jaime González

The proposed Centennial Village has once again stalled with the potential outcome a rebuilding of basically the same footprint.

Preface: As neighbors wait for the Safeway store to be re-built at Spruce & El Camino Real more and more issues continue to put the development off. For a long time the word on the street was the owner only wanted to rebuilt the shopping area yet housing was needed on this transit corridor. Thanks to South City resident Jaime González for his continued share of information on our social media allowing us to help keep our community updated on the progress, or lack thereof, of this & other issues in our City. Please note this is copy/paste from social media which tends to be an informal communication. 

Update on Centennial Village: Last Night March 22nd, City Council denied 3rd Amendment to take away some of the Prevailing Wage agreed upon by Developer. Instead voted to go into default proceedings. Developer has 30 days to come up with new plan. After 30 Days, city will vote to cancel project.

From last nights meeting, owner of property will probably go to just refurbishing existing building if no agreement is worked out. Did not sound like he was willing to to expand that much from original foot print of existing building.

Councilman Mark Addiego gave a small history of the original plan last night (Going back to about 2007). Looks like both city and developer are somewhat at fault (More Developer and owner). Anyway, this site was to just have new business built on the site. At the 11th hour when everything was ready to go, the city decided to change the game plan and wanted housing added to project. Causing a delay of approximately four years. Meanwhile, all the costs kept going up. Developer thought he could still do the project and continued with plan to build with modifications. Project approved in 2015. Turns out the numbers financially were not working out to well, so developer asked for extension’s. Trying to lower cost. Fast forward developer now asking for number 3 amendment. All this time not paying attention to cost. plain and simple. What tipped the scale was the Prevailing Wage part. City was not having no part of this. Giving way to this would set precedent for future projects. Council finally said No. Now it looks like more and more that there will be just a spruced (pardon the pun) up shell at the location. Owner not willing to spend.

Robert Hernández posted this concern “I think this site needs to explain what prevailing wage is and does. I don’t think your readers understand it. And the longer you all complain about it and not get it done, well the faster the homeless take it over and make it look like a slum.” to which Jaime González responded “In government speak, a prevailing wage is defined as the hourly wage, usual benefits and overtime, paid to the majority of workers, laborers, and mechanics within a particular area.”

A few other comments from neighbors on this news:

Lucinda Denning I had a feeling it was never going to happen
Christina Barnett Haas Wow all bullshit! Just build it already!
Edgar Luiz Diaz good! dont build, your RENT WILL INCREASE
Roschele Prasad Just make some great restaurants it is a perfect place for it
Marie Carelli-Partney yes, good restaurants!
Lucinda Denning They could of done without the housing and builded a new safeway and cvs and some resturants. But no. Cheap ass people
Ryan Goodwin So how much longer do we have to look at that mess. Oh but god forbid my garbage cans are visable from the street.
Monica Burke Let’s hope they do cancel it and realized it just needs to be shopping and really good restaurants.
Andrea Carey Villa The City should be ashamed of the way this project has been handled. We don’t need over-priced condos. But, we do need better shopping stores. Just get a contractor in there to build the new Safeway, CVS, Gym and forget about making the almighty dollar on housing. This city is getting very greedy and now we all have to pay the price for their poor choices !!!
Lorna Galvan Feger I agree…we do not need more housing in this area! We need the stores!
Denni Harp I agree 100%
Ryan Rogers Very well said
Judy Petersen Wtf
Karen Johanson Meanwhile, a main intersection in our city remains a totally embarrassing eyesore.
Lorna Galvan Feger Im glad it’s not happening! I live in Brentwood and I was dreading all the dirt from construction, and the nightmare of traffic from the completed project! I do miss having Safeway so close.
Sally Johnson Why even give the developer 30 days. Sounds like he doesn’t have the money to build this project. WE NEED A GROCERY STORE, The city keeps on building condos where are these people suppose to shop here in town. CANCEL THE PROJECT NOW. He’s had way to much time to jerk the citizens of this town around.
Jazrel Olvera We need another grocery store, going to Safeway on chestnut takes so long, I had 3 items and it took me 45 min in line. ?
Angela Rudoni Need another grocery store! In a food desert! The Chestnut Safeway is so awful they might as well tear that one down too! We can’t all afford/don’t want to eat out every night, even with really good restaurants all around.

Ron Dahlen There are NOT many GOOD restaurants remaining in SSF = a larger- clean Safeway with real bakery / butchers and iced display fish is a real upgrade from the Chestnut Store . New jobs- housing – shops great idea needed
Angela Rudoni Really? Seems at least a couple new good ones open every year! Flavas, Café 382, Amis Café, the new brewery. Access to all kinds of great food nearby is something that’s pretty unique to our area – IMO. We definitely agree that we’re in dire need of a quality grocery store in our town!
Robert Mantegani Every other town gets a new Safeway and we get that dump on Chestnut. give me a break.
Mary DeMars Good places to dine in So. City just to name a few: Garden Club, De Napoli, Bertolucci, Basque Cultural Center. But, yes, an upscale grocery would do wonders for our daily dining needs Devin Varela Like you guys cant go one more block to the lucky..

UPDATE: Austin Walsh with the San Mateo Daily Journal offers his perspective CLICK HERE Thanks again to Jaime Gonzalez for the continued updates. 

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M Vidak
M Vidak
4 years ago

Too many high rise building going up. We need to keep space to breath like So City was 50 years ago.

parc place
parc place
5 years ago

My vote is to open up a Cheesecake Factory or a CPK. We need some better restaurants in SSF

6 years ago

We have so many apartments going up in downtown SSF, that we don’t need more apartments at this site. Plus the traffic would be terrible. What we do need though, is a high-end safeway, like the one in Millbrae or Burlingame; and some nice stores/restaurants. That location is a premium location for a nice shopping center. Don’t waste it!!!!

your neighbor
your neighbor
6 years ago

I’m glad its not happening, to reserve open space (what little remains).

Just put in a new Safeway and better fitness gym. We don’t need high rises, the traffic would be a nightmare. Fix it, don’t re invent the wheel.

SSF can’t be everything to everyone, keep our open spaces. We’ll never see the sunset or sunrise if we keep building high rises. Stop and watch the sunset some time.