Bank of Italy is key part of downtown San Jose plan

SAN JOSE — The Bank of Italy historic tower in downtown San Jose is slated for more than an eye-catching renovation: The iconic high rise could become an office, cultural, retail, and food hub under a revamp that a development alliance has proposed.

Global development powerhouse Westbank has teamed up with local developer Gary Dillabough to launch a wide-ranging and long-term venture that would usher in a dramatic makeover of downtown San Jose, and the Bank of Italy tower is one of the early efforts in the endeavor.

“The Bank of Italy is an amazing building,” said Andrew Jacobson, head of development for Westbank’s San Jose initiative. “The historic characteristics are unlike anything you will see.”

Street-level view of Bank of Italy office and retail tower, looking north along South First Street in downtown San Jose, with exterior staircase and entrance to Fountain Alley visible, concept. Bjarke Ingels Group / Westbank

A top-to-bottom, inside-and-outside renovation and rehabilitation of the historic tower at 12 S. First St. in San Jose is long overdue, Jacobson said. Now, the upgrade is ready to happen under the guidance of Westbank and Dillabough’s Urban Community company.

Detailed view of the exterior staircase in Bank of
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How Does A House Or Condo Fit Into Your Financial Plan?

Personal Financial Advisor to Founders, Entrepreneurs, and their Families | Keystone Global Partners 

If you are a tech founder considering buying a house or condo, there is a lot to consider. It’s about far more than finding a nice place to call home. A home is an investment — a major asset to add to your portfolio. So it’s important to explore how your home purchase will fit into your overall financial plan.

Financial And Investment Planning

Buying a home impacts your personal finances in significant ways, so it’s crucial to evaluate a home purchase from a financial planning perspective. While plans change, you’ll need to be of the mindset that this investment may require a five- to 10-year commitment or more. 

Transaction costs alone mean it could take years to break even on the purchase. Upfront expenses can add up quickly, such as your down payment, mansion tax (for New Yorkers), other taxes and legal fees, among others. In general, it takes homebuyers around five years to recoup this investment.

As a homeowner, you are tying up your personal cash flow in ways that renters don’t have to consider. You will be committing to a long-term mortgage. Maintenance

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Plan To Rehab Hell’s Kitchen Building Approved By Landmarks Board

HELL’S KITCHEN, NY — A historic building whose shuttered storefronts have blighted a block of Hell’s Kitchen for years may be in for a makeover after the city’s Landmarks and Preservation Commission signed off on renovation plans Tuesday.

a group of people walking down a street next to a building: Owners of the Windermere Hotel on the corner of West 57th Street and Ninth Avenue are seeking to renovate the building's street-level facade to add new windows and cornices, repair its original cast-iron columns and restore brickwork.

© Landmarks and Preservation Commission
Owners of the Windermere Hotel on the corner of West 57th Street and Ninth Avenue are seeking to renovate the building’s street-level facade to add new windows and cornices, repair its original cast-iron columns and restore brickwork.

Owners of the Windermere Hotel on the corner of West 57th Street and Ninth Avenue are seeking to renovate the building’s street-level facade to add new windows and cornices, repair its original cast-iron columns and restore brickwork, bringing it closer to its original appearance.

Commissioners unanimously approved the plan during their Tuesday meeting, but asked applicants to keep working on aspects of the design in order to adhere more faithfully to the building’s original architecture.

Considered a prime example of Victorian architecture, the building was constructed in the 1880s as a residence for unmarried women. For decades, it was shrouded behind scaffolding as it crumbled into disrepair. The building became infamous after landlords were convicted for violently harassing tenants,

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Home Depot in Easton? Town asked to revise plan to host another ‘home improvement’ store | Local

EASTON — The town council will hear a request on Jan. 19 from a local property owner who wants to revise zoning text through an amendment to allow for the possibility of building a home improvement store east of U.S. Route 50 in Easton. The proposal would allow for a standalone, big-box home improvement store larger than 65,000 square feet.

The application is stirring up talk of a potential hew Home Depot store in Easton. In November, the town planning commission voted unanimously against the amendment.

Under the town of Easton’s current regulations, no major retail store larger than 65,000 square feet is allowed to be built outside of a shopping center. It must be within or adjacent to an existing shopping center.

The Gannon Family Limited Partnership, which owns property along U.S. Route 50 and leases land to companies such as Chipotle, Olive Garden and Tractor Supply Co., wants to change that.

Zach Smith, an attorney representing the Gannon Family, requested the change from the town at the end of October. He wrote a letter to the town planner dated Oct. 30 that his client was approached by a developer with interest in “proposing a new home improvement center

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More than 25{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c} of Surveyed Homeowners Plan to Finance Home Improvement Projects by Borrowing from Contractor

FOSTER CITY, Calif., Dec. 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ —, a leader in the home improvement and home services industry, recently surveyed more than 3,100 homeowners about how they plan to pay for their upcoming roofing, siding, window, HVAC and solar projects. Survey responses include the following highlights:

Expected financing for home renovations
While most respondents plan to pay for home improvements in cash, loans and credit cards will be used by nearly as many people.

  • Cash/Check: 41.66{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • Financing/Loan: 29.63{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • Other: 15.37{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • Credit Card: 13.34{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}

Loan option preferences
For respondents who indicated they would pursue financing/getting a loan, over 25{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c} hope to obtain financing through their contractor.

  • A loan through my contractor: 25.33{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • Personal loan: 13.09{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • Home Equity Loan: 7.39{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • Home equity line of credit (HELOC): 6.30{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • FHA or VA Loan: 4.24{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}

Finance research timing
Those planning to finance were asked about when they will begin researching their financing options.

  • After meeting with contractors/after learning more about project cost: 33.48{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • After choosing a contractor for my project: 18.55{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}
  • Before meeting with contractors/I already started researching: 13.27{ac967ad544075fb2f6bcea1234f8d91da186cac15e616dc329e302b7c7326b8c}

“It’s paramount to compare three to four contractor quotes ahead of your project, to find the best contractor, price and financing options,” advises

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