San Jose Environmental Innovation Center
City of San Jose
San Jose, CA
San José Environmental Innovation Center, built on a reclaimed brownfield, includes field and real-world scale demonstration access for entrepreneurs building smart and sustainable city solutions.
Initial: 31 Million USD
General Fund/Existing Public Funds
Public Private Partnership
State and local grants
Operational since 2014
Environmental Services Department
Like many other cities, the City of San José is always on the lookout for meaningful opportunities to encourage entrepreneurship and create jobs.
The City of San José transformed a marginal property and reclaimed brownfield into an asset that brings economic and environmental benefits to the region. Developed by the city’s Environmental Services Department, with support from San Jose State University Regional and Urban Planning department, the San José Environmental Innovation Center (SJEIC) is home to three tenants - Habitat for Humanity ReStore, County of Santa Clara’s Household Hazardous Waste facility, and Prospect Silicon Valley. Especially interesting, Prospect Silicon Valley – which was launched in partnership with the City and sponsored by BMW, Applied Materials, Wells Fargo Bank, DENSO, and Siemens – maintains a 23,000 sq.ft. Technology Demonstration Center providing lab, field and real-world scale demonstration access for entrepreneurs building smart and sustainable city solutions.
The project was developed debt-free, leveraging New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) to round out city investment.
This was the first time in California and the second time in the US where a city undertook all NMTC roles – the leveraged lender, master tenant, and developer. NMTC funding was available because the project was in an economically depressed area of the city. NMTC financing was made possible by National Development Council, Brownfield Revitalization, and Northern California Community Loan Fund providing $7.4 million in equity from J.P. Morgan Chase for the tax credits. Additional funding came from city sources including unclaimed deposits from the Construction Demolition Deposit Program, late fees associated with garbage pickup, a state grant from CalRecycle, a federal grant from the Economic Development Administration, and a portion of enterprise funds (waste, sewer and stormwater fees). To manage the financing, San Jose created a non-profit entity.
Reclaimed a marginal brownfield site.
Built to demonstrate 20 innovative water, energy and waste solutions.
Longterm, built to create 25,000 clean tech jobs.
This project was developed debt-free!
Who Should Consider
Cities that want to attract innovative environmental or smart cities companies.
Last UpdatedMar 15th, 2018