At a city council meeting on April 26th, Soriano proposed inviting Apple to open a store in this space. "I’m not one just to voice out an opinion, I like to offer some solution!” said Soriano. He also has launched a website, Hercules2020.com, to promote his vision for a thriving Hercules.
“Maybe, just maybe, an Apple store will keep bankruptcy away from the City of Hercules, ” said Soriano. He notes that a solid anchor store creates stability for other merchants. He points to Berkeley’s 4th Street as an example of this.
Additionally, an Apple store will bring in more tax revenues and more retail shops, something residents of Hercules have been clamoring for.
Soriano supports city manager Steve Duran’s proposal to increase sales tax by a half a cent. This will be on the June ballot. However, he says an increase in sales tax alone will have less impact on the current financial state of the city than if it is also bolstered by creative efforts to bring in unique retail businesses to Hercules.
Soriano encourages residents to visit Hercules2020.com website, sign the petition to bring APPLE STORE to Hercules, and attend a town hall meeting at Hercules City Hall on Thursday, May 10th at 7pm.
About the North Sycamore Downtown Project
To date, the North Sycamore Downtown Project has cost the city $35 million with $25 million in anticipated additional costs to finish the project. The building is currently unfinished and wrapped in white winterized material. The 160,000 square feet of retail space and condominium units sold for just $425,000 in March of 2012. This equates to $2.56/square foot plus profit sharing. According to Councilwoman Myrna De Vera there is no guarantee the building will be profitable upon completion.
The developer’s current proposal is to reduce the 40,000 square feet of retail space to a mere 10,000 square feet. The plan is to convert the rest of the square feet to housing units. This is concerting to Jojo Soriano. “The downtown is the heart of a city, and right now, ours doesn’t have a pulse,” says Soriano. “This proposal reverts the city back into a quiet bedroom community. Our new city slogan should be SHHH for SILENCE! Herculeans Homely Hibernating!”
About Jojo Soriano
Former Community Services & Library Commissioner, City of Hercules (2006-2010)
Hercules Chamber of Commerce, Director
Hercules Farmers Market, Organizer
Dynamic Referral Group, Founder
For more information, contact:
Jojo Soriano, Realtor & Hercules Resident
Direct – (510) 245-8500
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org