HERCULES -- The new developer for Market Hall will host another community meeting March 19 to discuss the future of the site.
The 6.62-acre property, bounded by Sycamore Avenue, San Pablo Avenue, Interstate 80 and an onramp to the freeway, last served as a temporary and unsuccessful outdoor food court with shops, and was supposed to become Phase I of a planned mixed-use Hercules New Town Center.
Palo Alto-based McNellis Partners bought the property in late 2012 from Kennedy Funding of New Jersey, holder of a $2.5 million mortgage from the former developer, Newport Beach-based The Red Barn Co.
The now-defunct Hercules Redevelopment Agency had handed the property to Red Barn in 2009 for no money. In exchange, Red Barn had pledged a share of future proceeds and to develop the property to a density of at least 300,000 square feet, including 50,000 square feet of commercial space.
John McNellis, a principal with the new developer, has characterized Market Hall as "a brilliant retail location" and ruled out residential uses there as unsuitable so close to a freeway. He also has said there would be no market for offices at the site.
At an earlier community meeting, on Jan. 12, McNellis said he envisioned a single-story retail complex with surface parking, possibly anchored by a drugstore, with a restaurant such as Applebee's, Buffalo Wild Wings or IHOP.
He also said Market Hall could be an alternative site for a Safeway if
Some residents have accused McNellis of being dismissive of the community's New Urbanist, pedestrian-, bicycle- and transit-friendly vision for the site, while others have said his plan is realistic and have urged a rethinking of the city's Central Hercules Plan.
The March 19 community meeting will be from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in the conference room of the Hercules Library, 109 Civic Drive.
What: Community meeting with developer
When: 7 to 8:30 p.m. March 19
Where: Hercules Library conference room, 109 Civic Drive, Hercules