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Site Near UCSD Proposed For California Stem Cell Center

San Diego leaders on March 16 submitted their proposal to the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, naming a building that could serve as the headquarters for the $3 billion stem cell research institute, approved by voters in Proposition 71 in November.

The site chosen to serve as the administrative building for the institute is Torrey Pines Science Park at 11025 N. Torrey Pines Road. The property is owned and managed by Slough Estates USA, Inc., which contributed funds toward providing a free, 10-year lease to the institute. The offices would occupy one floor of the two-story building, which has roughly 44,000 square feet.

The site meets the criteria set out by the CIRM, including at least 17,000 net usable square feet of office space, a minimum of 40 assigned parking spaces, and a location within one-quarter mile of public transportation. The institute indicated that it would also give preference to applicants that can provide free rent, additional parking, high-speed communications, tenant improvements and other perks.

Julie Meier Wright, the president and chief executive officer for the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corp. and one of the leaders of the San Diego site selection effort, said the site meets these requirements.

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The property is across the street from the Torrey Pines Golf Course and has a deepwater ocean view.

Burnham Real Estate Services represented the property owner. San Diego-based McGraw/Baldwin was the architect involved in the selection.

“I look at it this way we think we’ve got a great proposal and we should certainly be a finalist,” said Meier Wright on Wednesday, after the proposal was submitted.

Several cities including San Francisco, Sacramento and Los Angeles are also contenders for the headquarters, which would serves as the administrative building for stem cell research institute.

According to the request for proposal issued by the CIRM, the independent Citizen’s Oversight Committee will make the final decision on the site recommended by the CIRM in 75 days. The Citizen’s Oversight Committee includes two San Diego members: John Reed, the president of the Burnham Research Institute, and Richard Murphy, the president of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

The institute, which is currently using temporary space in Emeryville, would move into the office space within 30 to 90 days of lease execution.


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