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Livermore celebrates downtown development partners' recent milestones

Eden Housing, SPARC Theater, Quest Science Center secured property ownership, leases for key projects
Downtown Core
From left: Bryan Balazs (SPARC Theater Board Chair), Cheryl O’Connor (Eden Housing Board Member), Lisa Tromovitch (SPARC Theater Artistic Director), Monya Lane (Quest Science Center CEO), Matt Graves (Eden Housing Senior Project Developer), and Andrea Osgood (Eden Housing Senior Vice President of Development).

The city of Livermore recently celebrated three local organizations advancing projects aimed at achieving development goals in the city's downtown core.

Representatives from SPARC Theater, Eden Housing Inc., and Quest Science Center gathered with city officials Friday for a ceremony at Quest Plaza in Stockmen's Park, with the three organizations being lauded by City Council members for their commitments to projects in that area.

Each of the organizations has secured property ownership or leases for key sites in the downtown core and have all agreed to take the next steps needed to develop the property around or near Stockmen’s Park, city officials said in a statement. 

"The Council enthusiastically embraced their 'Unified Design Concept' which beautifully blended the arts, science, our western heritage, historic downtown and support for wine industry tourism, while also providing much needed workforce housing," Livermore Mayor Bob Woerner said of the city's development partners.

"Now that these partners control the land, they are focusing on securing the funding needed to build it within the next few years,” he continued.

Eden Housing and SPARC Theater representatives were presented with framed copies of their grant deeds, which both closed escrow earlier this month. Quest Science Center was awarded a certificate of acknowledgment for Quest Plaza, and plans to construct a Science and Society Center on land leased from the city.

"There are a dozen Cultural Core groups looking forward to sharing their work in a small affordable space downtown," said SPARC Theater artistic director Lisa Tromovitch. "We’ve received donations and pledges of almost $4 million dollars to-date and the design process is well underway. Purchasing the land will help us continue to raise funds as people see the project moving forward."

SPARC Theater has committed to move forward with plans for a TheaterLab space, with Eden Housing moving forward with construction on its 130-unit affordable housing complex and public park.

"This site is an exciting opportunity for Livermore, my hometown," said Matt Graves, senior project developer at Eden Housing. "Residents will enjoy easy access to transportation, education, restaurants, and entertainment. We look forward to contributing to the community of small family-owned businesses that make Livermore so special."

Quest Science Center has already started to unveil their vision for family and community programming at Quest Plaza with its Science@Stockmen series. The next event is on Sept. 24, focused on engineering.

The next steps that the three organizations have committed to range from fundraising, seeking investors and architects, and ultimately designing and building the planned new facilities.

The Blacksmith Square Expansion in the surrounding area is set to continue advancing later this month, when land transfers for the remaining parcels are anticipated to be complete.

Construction on the L Street Parking Garage is set to begin in January, following the completion of the I Street garage earlier this year. The two buildings combined are expected to provide an additional 1,200 parking spaces to the city's downtown area.