Lopez Named Program Manager of Groundwerx

Jon Lopez is the newly appointed program manager for Groundwerx, funded through the Property-Based Improvement District (PBID) that is managed through the San Jose Downtown Association (SJDA). At 33, Lopez is the youngest ever to hold that position, but be is also one of the few to have spent 14 years moving up through the organization, eventually holding virtually every position at some point.

“There is no better manager than one who can relate to the job challenges of every single worker,” said Chris Kendrix, SJDA Operations Manager.  Lopez was just 19 years old when he started as a Safety Ambassador, eventually graduating to machine operator, pressure washer, and finally supervisor.

Jon says the best part of his job is that every day is a different challenge. “Since downtown property owners voted to expand the boundaries and services of the PBID last year, our staff has nearly doubled in size,” he noted.  “I now manage 50 people, and they most definitely keep me on my toes!”

Joh also notes that the praise they get from downtown stakeholders really makes a difference.  “Keeping the Groundwerx team motivated and challenged is a big part of my job, and it definitely helps when they feel appreciated for their hard work.”

A native, Lopez has lived all over San Jose, but settled in the SUN neighborhood of downtown about seven years ago. He loves the diversity of the downtown and can often be seen catching a show at The Ritz or at 55 South on Sunday nights to see the band iLLiance play. He’s also looking forward to seeing his favorite DJ, Gordo, live at Discovery Meadow on June 15th, and the SJZ SummerFest, at which his father serves as MC of the Salsa Stage.

An avid bicyclist, you can often find Jon on his fixed-gear bike riding laps around Plaza de Cesar Chavez.  “I discovered a while back that fifteen laps is a perfect 5 mile conditioning ride, but soon learned that a lot of other Fixed Gear Cycling enthusiasts favor that route as well.”

The Property-Based Improvement District (PBID) is a special benefit assessment district that provides enhanced maintenance, public safety, beautification and economic development programs above and beyond those provided by the City of San Jose.  Key programs include Groundwerx cleaning and ambassador programs, tree-trimming and care, homeless assistance, business development and street life projects such as murals, crosswalk enhancement and decorative lighting.

Nationally, PBID services improve the overall viability of business districts, increasing property values and sales tax revenue.  Groundwerx is staffed by Block by Block, a company that specializes in staffing clean and safe programming for downtown assessment districts nation-wide.

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