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Site Chart

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City-owned Site election
Site selection is critical for the success of your event. Consider the number of people attending, weather, sight lines, access, and event set-up when choosing a site. The following list of City-owned sites are some of the sites available and is meant to assist you in choosing a City-owned space for your event. You should visit the space and judge for yourself. Remember, some spaces are extremely popular and may already be booked on certain dates. To find out, contact OCA at (408) 793.4344 or the Special Parks Use Office at (408) 794.6500.

Downtown Sites:
Reservations: The Downtown Festival Site, Downtown Parade Route, Paseos and Plazas are reservable up to 1 year in advance. Organizations that have used a site for 3 consecutive years (at approximately the same time of year) may reserve that site for the same event up to 2 years in advance.

Parking: There are over 21,000 parking spaces in the downtown core. Several public lots are discounted after 6 pm and on weekends. See the downtown map for context, adjacencies, access, and nearby parking.

Sites below are listed in order from maximum capacity to least capacity.
To shortcut to sites that fit your event capacity best, click here: 100, 800, 1,000, 2,500, 8,500, 12,000, 26,000, 150,000.

Please remember that these are maximum capacities; a smaller event may work best at a site with a much larger capacity. Also remember that capacity is only one factor in determining the best event site.

SiteLocationCapacityDescriptionTypical Event UseOther
Downtown Festival Site, Expanded Festival SiteCore Street Site (below) and Discovery Meadow150,000+Events with a single day attendance exceeding 200,000 must expand their event site to include both the Core Street Site and Discovery Meadow, which lies at the south boundary of the Street Site. This mitigates excessive congestion within the event site. Extremely large festivalsTemporary fences may be erected to establish a gated event ($15 per person maximum admissions charge, a 5% additional fee for gated events will apply), as long as public sidewalk passage is left open for pedestrian use. Business and parking access plans are required to mitigate public inconvenience.
Downtown Festival Site, Core Street SiteAlmaden Boulevard between Santa Clara and San Carlos Streets 150,000 attendees As the largest public property event venue established by the City, this central Downtown location is in close proximity to parks, public transportation and cultural facilities. Large festivals Generally used on weekends and holidays only, with setup/removal of event equipment taking place during non-business hours, so as to accommodate Downtown business and commute patterns.
Parade Route** Moving eastward from HP Pavilion (Arena) on Santa Clara Street, then south on Market Street to begin disbanding at San Carlos. A shorter parade route is available on Market Street from Santa Clara Street to San Carlos with disbandment occurring at San Carlos. 2 hours with approximately 150 maximum units (i.e. a float, a marching bands, etc.)San Jose's largest and most historic parades are conducted in the heart of the Downtown. Designated staging areas have been developed that can accommodate floats, marching units, equestrians and giant balloons. A reviewing stand and bleachers may be erected on or near Plaza de Cesar Chavez Parades Street closure to take place as close to the start of the parade as possible and to remain closed for just 1/2 hour after the parade ends, for clean-up. Parades with fewer units may use a portion of the route, depending on adequate staging and destaging plans.
Discovery Meadow, Guadalupe River Park and Gardens San Carlos Street & Woz Way Small Event: Less than 26,000 standing and 12,000 seated. Less than 4 hours in duration. 4 or fewer booths.
Large Event: To be negotiated for standing and 12,000 seated. More than 4 hours in duration. 5 to 125 booths.
Rectangular park bordered by the Children's Discovery Museum, San Carlos Street, and the Guadalupe River Park. Typically used for large events, midsize festivals, arts & crafts, concerts, exhibits, minor events, performances, and ceremonies. Available for free or gated & private event. ($15 per person maximum admissions charge, a 5% additional fee for gated events will apply). Signage is required for all fenced events that cross or block paths. Limited number of events scheduled per month.
Arena GreenAutumn and Santa Clara Streets Small Event: Less than 12,000 standing and 5,500 seated. Less than 4 hours in duration. 4 or fewer booths.
Large Event: Less than 16,000 standing (some flexibility) and 7,500 seated. More than 4 hours in duration. 5 to 100 booths.
Triangular park located to the east of the HP Pavilion and adjacent to the Guadalupe River Park. Carousel and permanent bathrooms on-site. Typically used for some large scale, primarily small scale events, including: festivals, concerts, exhibits, arts and crafts, theatrical events, ceremonies, and performances. Available for free or gated and private event ($15 per person maximum admissions charge, a 5% additional fee for gated events will apply). Signage is required for all fenced events at Guadalupe River Park and Gardens - Arena Green that crosses or blocks paths. Limited number of events scheduled per month. Simultaneous events at Park and Arena require special traffic and parking plan.
Plaza de Cesar Chavez Park & Market Streets Small Event: Less than 8,500 standing and 4,000 seated. Less than 4 hours in duration. 4 or fewer booths.
Large Event: Less than 8,000 standing and 4,000 seated. More than 4 hours in duration. 5 to 35 booths.
Oblong urban park. Large stage on north end. Water feature in middle of park, near Paseo de San Antonio. Metered parking along park, surface parking lots nearby. Typically used for events, small festivals, music concerts, and ceremonies. Normally not available for gated events and not available for private event. A limited number of events are scheduled per month.
St. James ParkSecond and St. James Streets. Small Event: Less than 2,500 standing and 1,000 seated. Less than 4 hours in duration. 4 or fewer booths.
Large Event: Less than 5,000 standing and 2,000 seated. More than 4 hours in duration. 5 to 35 booths.
Rectangular park, bisected by Second Street and light rail. Historic features, playground, and senior center on-site. Typically used for primarily small scale events such as small festivals, concerts, exhibits, minor events, ceremonies, and performances. Available for free or gated event ($15 per person maximum admissions charge, a 5% additional fee for gated events will apply). Signage is required for all fenced events at St. James Park that crosses or blocks paths. Limited number of events scheduled per month. No electricity is available at this site.
Circle of Palms Plaza Market Street, near San Fernando and First Streets. Limited to 2,000 standing or 1,000 seated. This elegant, hard-surfaced plaza in the heart of Downtown has been the site of numerous public and private events. Nestled between the San Jose Museum of Art and the Fairmont Hotel, the site centers on a large, embedded California State Seal surrounded by a circle of lofty palms. Typically used for outdoor movies, private parties, holiday events, overflow from events at Plaza de Cesar Chavez, performances, and exhibits. The event set up must not contact or rest on the California State Seal, or the sculpture: Figure Holding the Sun. It may be tented for corporate galas, and provides an excellent outdoor space in conjunction with Fairmont Hotel functions and Downtown conventions.
Repertory Plaza (Also known as Susan & Phil Hammer Repertory Theater Plaza) In front of the Repertory Theatre on Second Street. ~1,000 10,000-square foot plaza Adjacent to large public parking lot, and readily accessibly by light rail. Typically used for small events and performances. Requires close coordination with the Repertory Theatre.
Library West PlazaSan Carlos Street, near Almaden Boulevard. Less than 800 standing or 400 seated. This hard-surfaced plaza is semi-shaded is located at the front of the San Jose McEnery Convention Center and adjacent to the San Jose Hilton and Towers. Typically used for small scale events, exhibits, ceremonies, and performances. The public passageway adjacent to the west side of the former library building may serve as the required public access between San Carlos Street and the Convention Center. Amplified sound is not permitted.
Paseo de San Antonio From Plaza de Cesar Chavez (Market Street) to San Jose State University (Fourth Street) Although no maximum event attendance has been determined for these venues, each block has a unique environment that must be considered during event planning. Pedestrian access must be maintained through all blocks during special events. Four block long sidewalk connecting Plaza de Cesar Chavez to the Repertory Theatre Plaza to San Jose State University. This paseo is well served by businesses and light rail. Typically used for exhibits, information booths, and limited vending booths. May be used as contiguous event site, or each block may be used independently. Paseo One is bordered by the Fairmont Hotel and the Fairmont Annex; Paseo Two serves small businesses, a cinema and a residential complex; Paseo Three lies adjacent to the San Jose} Repertory Theater and opens to a larger Repertory Plaza; and Paseo Four fronts the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, residential units and small shops.
Fountain Alley Between First and Second Streets, just south of Santa Clara Street. 100 Unique mid-block paseo one block long bordered by a surface parking lot to the south and historic buildings to the north. Light rail accessible. Typically used for exhibits, information booths, and vending booths (food, beverages, merchandise). Although paved, it does not have the hardscape or landscape amenities that other Downtown plazas and paseos offer.
Alternate Street Sites City of San Jose Streets Various Downtown streets and streets throughout the City have served as venues for a wide variety of unique, successful special events. The use of public streets and sidewalks is encouraged by the City, with special attention paid to the needs of business and residents in the proposed area Event producers are encouraged to seek imaginative uses of public and private property combinations, to ease event impacts on the normal course of business and traffic.
**Alternate Parade Routes City of San Jose Streets Various San Jose's neighborhoods also enjoy and participate in unique parades. Neighborhood parades may be permitted on streets outside the Downtown, depending on potential impacts on businesses, residences and traffic patterns in the proposed location. The San Jose Police Department and the Office of Cultural Affairs will work with the parade organizer to design the route, and identify any mitigation required, for alternate parade routes.

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Last Modified: 09.28.12

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