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SAN FRANCISCO-The transformation of a 25-acre light industrial park in Santa Clara, CA, into a nearly 2 million-square-foot headquarters campus for computer graphics firm Nvidia Corp. is up for approval today by the Santa Clara City Council. The applicant is value-add investor Harvest Properties of Emeryville, which acquired the light industrial park in late 2005 with an equity partner for between $95 and $100 million. Harvest and Blackrock Realty Advisors sold Nvidia the 475,000-sf, 10-building development this past February for $149.4 million and will raze and redevelop it for the company, though no definitive timeline has been hammered out, a source at Nvidia tells GlobeSt.com.

The development site sits across San Tomas Expressway from Nvidia’s current corporate headquarters building. Harvest Properties’ development proposal covers not only the 25-acre business park but also an additional contiguous 10 acres that sits across San Tomas Aquina Creek from the business park, according to city documents. It wasn’t immediately clear whether Nvidia’s headquarters would cover the entire 35.6-acre site or only the business park it acquired earlier this year.

As proposed, the development plan calls for the existing low-rise buildings to be razed in favor of three eight-story buildings built out for high-tech lab and office uses, parking for 7,050 vehicles including three multi-story structures, and a pedestrian bridge over the San Tomas Aquino Creek connecting overall development site. The design, which includes more open space than the existing development, includes glass- and aluminum paneled buildings with large atriums, projecting canopies and elevated bridges connecting them to one another.

The City’s Planning Commission is recommending approval of the project, which entails certifying the EIS, approving a rezone from light industrial and approving the phased development agreement. The street addresses involved are 2600 and 2800 San Tomas Expressway and 2400 Condensa Street.

Harvest and Blackrock Realty acquired San Tomas Business Park from an affiliate of Miami-based LNR Partners. At the time of the transaction, sources told GlobeSt.com that the purchase price was slightly less than Divco West Properties paid Cigna Insurance for the asset five years earlier . Divco and its capital partner gave the property back to their lender in 2004 after key tenants left and the income couldn’t service the debt on the property. The LNR affiliate that sold San Tomas to Harvest properties acquired it from the lender.

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