How San Jose has seduced the « Silicon Valley »

Jewel of the american economy’s high-tech industry, the « Silicon Valley » is a spread out area located south of the San Francisco bay.

Composed with some of the mightest computer and semi-conducteur companies, the business activity has slowly expanded itself to reach biotechnology and renewable energy industries.

The « Silicon Valley » got world known because of its impressive capacity of innovation pulling american and world growth up.

Initially made of agricultural lands, this territory welcomed businessmen, scientists, intellectuals and university professors, carried by a collective impetus, build up large economic empires : Google, HP, Facebook, Yahoo, Adobe or Apple.

Often imitated but never equaled yet, its economic model fascinates. However, some international metropolis manage to catch up with the « Silicon Valley » as Bangalore in India.

In order to keep its leadership, San Jose, « capital of the Silicon Valley », has built itself an urban environment copying with its ambitions.

Taking advantage of remarkable weather conditions (rate equivalent to 300 sunny days per year), the city has remained especially attractive providing living conditions appealing to a wealthy and demanding population.

Throughout its master plans, the municipality has built a range of high-quality housing. It has established a secure, efficient and reliable mass transit. The metropolis has adapted its tax method to encourage new coming companies and job creation.

The city has promoted education. The university of San jose is a public institution providing to the « Silicon Valley » hundred of graduates.

Art, culture and entertainment are very important in the city life.

The municipality of San Jose has tried to preserve ethnic diversity making easier  foreign workers’ integration.

Urban village, San Jose CA

Urban village, San Jose CA (photo by Jay Graham)

In the masterplan « San Jose 2040 », the city wants to build urban village creating small central places within the metropolis and giving to the people, who live or work there, the feeling of being part of its neighborough.

Theses villages will contribute to improve living conditions. They will enable a part of the population out of the « Silicon Valley » business, to get a job.

Knowing that the territory’s economy doesn’t rely only on its executives, the municipality will promote small shop, retailers, craft industry, culture and nearness services.

The high salaries of the Silicon Valley have made the real estate increase. Housing has become an issue for people with low salaries. Local authorities will establish affordable pricing housing.

Strongly involved in environmental issues, the city wants to end up with the car model. Clean mobility solutions (walk, bicycle, rollerskating) will be promoted in these urban villages.

This local approach on San Jose’s urban and economic development is a key element of its success, making the metropolis attractive locally and internationally.

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