SPUR San Jose: Incubated and Launched

SVCREATES (then 1stACT Silicon Valley) was introduced to the 100 year old SPUR organization in 2009 when attending the opening of its new Urban Center location in San Francisco. The level of civic pride, engagement and ownership in San Francisco’s future was palpable, and seen as an incredible opportunity for advancing SVCREATES’ community building and place making agenda through arts, culture, urban planning and design in San Jose.

The courtship began. Over the next two and a half years, SVCREATES hosted a San Jose City tour for SPUR board members, socialized “the idea” of a SPUR San Jose with local leaders, raised over $500,000 in seed funding, prototyped an organizational model, helped recruit SPUR San Jose’s first director, and provided administrative support and incubation space for its opening in 2012.

Today, SPUR San Jose has an office of its own and a high-functioning local board and staff. It has substantially grown the number of civic leaders and urbanists who care, and are engaged in every important public policy debate shaping San Jose’s future and that of our region.

SVCREATES continues to be involved in SPUR San Jose through board participation and an arts and urban design partnership on projects like the Creative Center for the Arts in Japantown.