Thompson has worked to improve relationships between Old Quad residents and Santa Clara University students.
“There has been a push among some Old Quad residents to limit the expansion of the students who live in the neighborhood,” Thompson said. “We’re trying to bring the students and residents together so they interact and understand that they’re all part of the community.
“If the students meet the neighbors, they have a better respect for them. If the residents meet the students, they’ll know that the students are approachable, and they can work on resolving the specific issues that affect one another, such as noise and garbage issues,” continued Thompson. “Some landlords don’t have enough garbage service for their student tenants and we’re working with the University on that.”
According to Thompson, when Prometheus Apartments wanted to launch a new apartment development on Benton Street. off El Camino Real, Thompson engaged in 18-month negotiations with the developer. When Prometheus Apartments sought to build more apartment units, the Old Quad Residents Association asked for something in return for the impact these units will have in the local community.
“Prometheus also owns Park Central Apartments, which is on Benton, just down the road from this new development,” Thompson said. “Park Central Apartments encompasses parts of Franklin Street and Washington Street in the downtown area. We asked Prometheus to return Franklin Street and Washington Street to the City of Santa Clara. Prometheus has owned this area since the 1980s.
“Prometheus showed that they were a good corporate citizen by working with us to come to a solution that worked for both parties,” continued Thompson. “The City Council saw the opportunity that everyone had been working toward and approved this. This also wouldn’t have happened without the support of City Manager Deanna Santana and the Assistant City Manager Manuel Pineda. Dan Ondrasek, one of the founders of Reclaim our Downtown, was a part of the negotiations.”