Stanford University submitted to the city of Menlo Park this week updated plans for its 8.4-acre "Middle Plaza" mixed-use development at 500 El Camino Real.
Stanford's plans for the complex of housing, offices and retail reflect some architectural changes, such as the shape and location of some buildings, according to Stanford officials.
"To the casual observer, the current project will look very similar to the images we showed in September 2015," said John Donohoe, associate director of planning and entitlement at Stanford.
The development, which will run along El Camino from the Stanford Park Hotel (100 El Camino Real) in the south to Big 5 Sporting Goods (700 El Camino) in the north, will still contain about 215 rental housing units, 144,000 square feet of office space and 10,000 square feet of retail space.
Also unchanged from the plans submitted in September 2015, the project will not include medical office space. About 48 percent of the apartments will be one-bedroom, and 52 percent will be two-bedrooms, according to Mr. Donohoe.
A large plaza, also expected to be named Middle Plaza, will remain part of the development. It will be publicly accessible but privately owned and maintained, and will have landscaping, outdoor seating and shops, according to the plans.
The plans also factor in the presence of a bike and pedestrian crossing at the Caltrain tracks and Middle Avenue. While the crossing is a city-sponsored project, Mr. Donohoe said, "Stanford stands by its previous commitment to make a significant contribution toward the cost of the crossing, and we have designed our Middle Plaza to integrate with the crossing when it is ultimately constructed."
Residents who participated in Stanford public events on the project "overwhelmingly endorsed the idea of a significantly expanded public plaza that serves the community as an asset and vibrant gathering place," said Steve Elliott, Stanford's managing director for development, land, buildings and real estate, in a press statement. "Beyond the plaza, residents also made it clear that they want to see more restaurants featuring a diversity of cuisines, more open space and more rental housing to support the City's growth."
The city of Menlo Park is expected to release its draft environmental impact report on the development later this week, Stanford officials said.
Stanford will hold an open house for the public to learn more about the project on Thursday, March 16, from 6 to 8 p.m. The informational event will be at Little House at 800 Middle Ave. in Menlo Park. Staff will answer questions and explain the changes on a drop-in basis.
Stay tuned for updates as more information becomes available. Documents about the project are likely to be uploaded to the city's web page on the project here.