By as early as February, Palo Alto train riders may be able to grab a cup of coffee from Caffé del Doge in the University Avenue Station.
The café, which also has a location on University Avenue, was one of two firms to bid for several hundred square feet of space in the depot free for six months, in exchange for cleaning the bathrooms, Real Property Manager Bill Fellman said recently.
Caffé del Doge's proposal needs to be approved by the City Council in January before it can begin applying for permits to install sinks and other equipment, Fellman said.
A non-profit, the Bike Coalition, also plans to rent about 500 square feet of the depot, Fellman said.
Both organizations hope to be set up before the Feb. 17 Tour of California bike race, Fellman said.
Fellman said he expected more applications.
"I think they realized the janitorial (work) is more than not paying rent," he said.
After six months, the café will begin paying rent based on its sales.
Two coffee carts have failed at the depot, but the number of passengers passing through has increased since then, Fellman said.
The Santa Clara County Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) pays for janitorial service now, but it is only available for transit workers. VTA rents the depot from the City of Palo Alto, which then pays property owner Stanford University.