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Tuesday, Jun 25, 2024

Project to Create Jobs, Produce Taxes for City

Liberty Station, the $850 million multiuse development being built on the former site of the Naval Training Center in Point Loma, expects to create some 8,000 jobs, and bring in tens of millions of tax dollars in the long term that its developers say will be reinvested in the surrounding community in the coming decades.

Here’s the status of the project to date, according to the San Diego-based builder Corky McMillin Cos.

Office District ,

This 22-acre, 380,000-square-foot tract of Class A office space is in various stages of development, with a number of buildings now under construction or complete and occupied.

Among the tenants in the office district already occupying space at Liberty Station are the Corky McMillin Cos., which has relocated its headquarters there after 44 years in National City, CDS Small Business Finance, Cooper Mann, San Diego Funding, Novonics Corp., Rock Church Administration, McMillin Capital, and TriWest Insurance.

Others that have signed leases, and are awaiting completed buildings, are Countywide Mortgage, Dr. Julie Doyle , Glow MD Skin Care, Cubic Defense Applications, Telisimo, Gnostech, Inc., and Stutz Artiano Shinoff & Holtz.

“The velocity of the leasing has been very good,” said Don Mitchell, the first vice president of office and investment properties for CB Richard Ellis.

“The activity seems to be much stronger than the general market in San Diego, because of the special development of Liberty Station , the opportunity to be in a location that is truly live, work and play, with access to Downtown, and free parking.”

Linda Hobbs, the president of Telisimo, formerly the Aradiant Corp., which provides technical support services, plans to move her first group of staffers to Liberty Station in mid-February.

“We are very excited,” she said. “We’ve been in Kearny Mesa for 10 years, and it was very convenient. Last October, we purchased a company in Mexico, because there are a lot of opportunities down there. Our lease is coming up here, and because we will be in Mexico, we wanted something closer to Downtown, something near the airport, with clients coming in from all over the U.S.

“We looked in Old Town, but nothing really sparked our interest,” she added. “Then we went to Liberty Station, and the location and value were very good. We have Kearny Mesa prices for Downtown quality. I’m looking forward to being a pioneer tenant there.”

Residential ,

The 349-unit residential component is sold out, and includes 140 condos (Anchor Cove), 80 detached, single-family homes (Admiralty Row), and 129 detached row homes (Beacon Point).

Each neighborhood has several different floor plans and sizes, ranging from two to five bedrooms and 1,000 to about 2,800 square feet.

Original prices, all market rate, ranged from the mid-$400,000s to the mid-$800,000s, with resales of the highest-end homes going for more than $1 million.

NTC Park ,

Curbs and gutters are being laid for the parking and traffic areas of the $14.7 million, 46-acre regional park. On schedule for completion in December.

Sail Ho Golf Club ,

Grading and shaping are under way on the nine-hole, short-distance course, covering 16 acres, and plans are being completed for the pro-shop renovations. On schedule for completion in April, with a three- to four-month grow-in period. Public play scheduled to start in August.

Historic Gate 1 ,

Work includes reconfiguring the intersection and replacing the existing traffic light. On schedule for completion in January. (Opening of the gate to be announced.)

Farragut and Rosecrans ,

Reconfiguring the intersection and adding a traffic light. On schedule for completion in February.

Hotels ,

What hotel will be built on Liberty Station’s east hotel site, on the other side of the Harbor Drive pedestrian bridge, is still being negotiated.

On the west hotel site, the California Coastal Commission in October approved plans for the project’s resort village , a hotel complex that will host a 200-room Courtyard by Marriott, a 150-room Hilton Homewood Suites, and a 33,000-square-foot conference center.

Building plans are being reviewed by city staff. Construction is expected to start by February.

Harbor Retail Pads ,

Part of the west hotel project, this includes 24,000 square feet of restaurants and other retail uses. Construction documents are under way, with building expected to start in late February to early March.

Rock Church and Academy ,

Construction has officially begun, with the demolition of the south side of the building. This area will become the Rock Church’s sanctuary.

Demolition will continue during the next couple of months as the south side demo is completed and the north side exterior wall is removed. The Rock Church is expecting construction to be completed on the new church home in spring 2007.

Education District ,

The final High Tech High building is complete and occupied by High Tech High Media Arts, High Tech Middle Media Arts and Explorer Elementary School.

John and Alice Finn Office Plaza ,

These three historic buildings, making up about 29,000 square feet, are undergoing renovations and tenant improvements. The first tenant is scheduled to move in next month. Two other buildings are scheduled for completion in May. Leasing is ongoing.

Liberty Station Marketplace ,

“Termiting” is complete; awaiting approvals to move forward with major construction. Scheduled for completion in December.

The only signed tenant is Trader Joe’s, which will anchor the Marketplace, a 150,000-square-foot commercial district that is expected to include a grocery store, coffeehouse, bookstore and restaurants , all now being negotiated, according to Jeff Rogers, director of development for La Jolla-based CW Clark Inc.

“We hope to be fully under way shortly, and we hope to begin hard construction within a month or so,” he said recently.

Bo Havlik, a partner and director of retail services for Lee & Associates’ San Diego office, said: “I have taken tenants there, and they like the project. Some upscale restaurants are interested in going into the area. Trader Joe’s is getting more and more into these areas, where there is disposable income to shop, like Point Loma.”

Shoreline Plaza ,

Occupying 33,000 square feet in six buildings, Ocean Village will be a maritime-themed retail and light industrial area, with eventual public access to the boat channel. The project also includes a boat slip and launching ramp.

“I’d like to revive the Rowing Club, or something like that,” said Robert C. Spriggs, managing partner of Western Communities Group and Ocean Village Associates, LLC, owner and developer of the Shoreline Plaza at Liberty Station. “It’s an ideal location for rowing and kayaking. I think it’s going to be a great project when it’s done, and a great asset to the community. We are the gateway to the bay.”

Spriggs said he’s also working with consultants on what he said would be state-of-the-art access for people with disabilities, “which has been lacking in marinas and waterfront properties.”

Possible tenants include sail makers and businesses that make small boat repairs, rent kayaks and offer boat storage, as well as a small waterfront cafe.

“Tenants we are going for now are on Shelter Island,” said Spriggs. “They’ve been unable to get long-term leases from the port. We’ve gotten a couple of inquiries from port tenants, who don’t want to live under a month-to-month tenancy.”

NTC Promenade ,

Two of the initial six buildings of the 26-building arts, culture and science district are under renovation, and are expected to be finished by March. Events already are being scheduled. All six of the buildings are expected to be completed by the summer.

Resident groups in the first phase of the Promenade include:


the Jean Isaacs San Diego Dance Theater, the Lower Left Dance and Performance Collective, Malashock Dance, and San Diego Ballet.

Environmental Science:

San Diego Coastkeeper.

Recreation Education:

Walkabout International.

Multidisciplinary Arts:

A Reason to Survive, the AJA Project, the Arts Miles Mural Project, Expressive Arts Institute, and Street of Dreams.

Education/Youth Leadership:

Family Literacy Foundation, the Jenna Druck Foundation, and KIT: Kids Included Together.

Visual Arts:

Visions Art Quilt Gallery and San Diego Watercolor Society.


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