After 100 years in operation, the Gilroy Cannery closed down in 1997 and for a short period following, operated a packaging business at the old canning facility. Recognizing the opportunity of a housing project to introduce and restore economic and social life to Downtown, the project was seen as a catalyst and cornerstone for the community.
Embracing the vision of the Cannery District in Downtown Gilroy’s Specific Plan, the project helped to transform the light industrial area into a contemporary higher density housing and arts district providing affordable housing. The 100 percent affordable housing project provides 104 units designated for families making between 50 to 60 percent of the area median income. A mix of five one-bedroom live/work units, 71 two-bedroom units, and 28 three-bedroom units is supported by approximately 1,500 square feet of community space offering a community lounge with kitchen and dining room, exercise room, outdoor park, playground, community garden, outdoor eating area, covered parking, bike storage, and on-site management.
Recognizing the site’s heritage, the project also integrates colorful, mosaic public art panels of its canning history to create vibrant and culturally rich streetscapes within Downtown. Its location offers easy access to downtown amenities including transit stops, the Gilroy Public Library, public parks and local schools. The reintroduction of housing puts feet on the street, supporting downtown merchants and the resurgence of downtown life and activity.