St. James Park

San Jose, CA

Back to

150 Years of History Reimagined for The Future

This project is an opportunity to rejuvenate St. James Park in honor of its 150th anniversary. Rehabilitation of St. James Park must be pursued with an attitude that enables open space goals – cohesive yet differentiated, undivided yet accessible, situated within an urban context yet separated from it. CMG has worked closely with the City of San Jose to align the ambitions and design goals of the park with a phased implementation approach and budget to achieve these goals strategically, maximizing activation over time for highest community benefit. The design maintains and enhances unique historic aspects of the park while re-organizing a largely undefined central open space into outdoor rooms for recreation, play, and gathering. The revitalized contemporary urban park will resonate with the delight of Victorian strolling gardens and new recreational amenities. An expansive, shade-giving canopy of trees incorporates existing large heritage trees and defines the park’s place in the urban fabric.

The Levitt Pavilion will be able to transform from park structure into an extraordinary venue for outdoor music and performance; an iconic sculptural structure with undulating shade canopy wings. The stage and surrounding canopy arms each house fixed sound and lighting elements that facilitate a rapid and scalable setup for a range of activities, from solo acoustic sets to more complex musical ensembles. The generous open stage will accommodate many performance types from operas, symphonies, and large bands to solo musicians. The Lawn creates a flexible space for visitors to spread out a blanket and sit directly in front of the performers to enjoy the show or stroll along the edges under the canopy wings. Image Credit: Futureforms

Parks are for people that are diverse in both demographics and interests. Just as there is not only one type of person, there is no one type of park that will satisfy all. Yet, all interests can be held together, unified by a structure or framework that supports urban life. St. James Park is a space that accommodates and supports a wide variety of interests and activities, a world class park at the center of a neighborhood transforming itself in the present.