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OED gets a private tour of The Grad


In August, a small group of OED staff were given a private look at The Grad, a 19-story dorm-style apartment building one block from San Jose State University.  The tour was hosted by Carol Schwartz, senior project manager for Amcal, co-developer with Swenson, and included a terrifying ride on the external construction elevator to the first stop, the 18th floor.

With a 2020 opening scheduled, the L-shaped high-rise is being completed from the bottom up, with appliance installation, flooring, and finishes moving from floor to floor. On the third floor, over the adjacent parking garage, is a spacious, ¾-acre open-air recreation area that will include a swimming pool, barbeques, sundeck, sports courts and storage for as many as 575 bicycles. The building also features extensive study and common areas and workout facilities.

City staff collaborated closely with the development team through 2016 as they worked to consolidate a multi-property project encompassing the then-blighted former McDonald’s restaurant at the corner of San Carlos and 3rd Street. AMCAL and Swenson then partnered during the planning process in the Fall of 2016, and the project received an entitlement for the 19-story tower within five months.

Swenson, the general contractor and architect for the project, opted to keep rents lower by constructing a shared community-driven floor plan, featuring approximately four bedrooms per unit, mostly with  their own bathroom, and a shared common area and central kitchen and laundry area. Some layouts may have only three bathrooms.

Although the layout of units in The Graduate conforms to student dorm needs, it is expected that non-students will also be attracted to the co-living arrangements, especially given the associated lower rents, estimated to be around $1,200 per month for each 165-square-foot single room.

The temporary leasing center will soon be open in the parking lot across 3rd Street, and Schwartz shared that there has already been interest in the 14,750 sf of ground floor retail space accessible from East San Carlos at Second and Third Streets.  For more information on The Grad, visit Amcal’s webpage.