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Design Matters In Keeping San Diego Competitive With Other Business Hubs

A commercial development doesn't end with the completion of a building or even when much of the space is occupied. Creating a place that attracts and retains tenants is an ongoing process, even in a healthy office market like San Diego.

Ware Malcomb principal Tiffany English

In short, design matters, not just to fill space, but to keep San Diego competitive as a business and tech hub. Some of San Diego's top commercial property designers will be on hand to discuss cutting-edge commercial design at Bisnow's Design Matters: San Diego Construction & Development event July 31.

"Tenants are looking for environments that are more focused on the occupant," Ware Malcomb principal Tiffany English said. English leads the growth and overall management of the firm's San Diego office.

A number of different design elements can make a space occupant-focused.

"They include access to more natural light or nourishment, activities and variety in how the occupants work, and approaches such as WELL Building, amenity spaces and alternative work environments," English said.

Recently the San Diego office of Ware Malcomb completed the interior architecture and design services for the new San Diego offices of 3D Systems, a manufacturer of 3D printers.

The new 52K SF facility serves multiple functions as an office, a research and development lab, and as a briefing center for customers to learn about the company’s products. Its amenity space includes a first-floor café with outdoor access and large glass sliding doors that open into the engineering space. The mezzanine addition provides a multiuse collaborative workspace overlooking the executive open-plan area. 

“In addition to meeting the company’s immediate space needs, 3D Systems’ new office was designed to reflect the culture of the company and allow flexibility to accommodate future growth,” English said.

I.D.E.A. Partners partner David Malmuth

At San Diego's IDEA1, a mixed-use development in the 93-acre I.D.E.A. District in Downtown San Diego’s East Village neighborhood, art is an essential component in making the space distinctive for its occupants.

"We’ve integrated art into IDEA1 because it's a key component of building an inspiring place for our tenants and residents," I.D.E.A. Partners partner David Malmuth said. 

"IDEA1 combines visual art with frequent programming of musical, dance, fashion and food events in a way that enables multiple opportunities for creative collisions."

A recent example of such a "collision," Malmuth said, was the Sensorium event at the property, produced by Vanguard Culture.

"It was revelatory," he said. "The way they used the spaces — particularly the transformation of 15 units — was surprising and delightful."

During a single evening that also featured food and wine tastings, over 80 artists transformed 15 condo lofts of IDEA1 community with experiential, multisensory art experiences themed around the five senses. Vanguard Culture is a nonprofit focused on creating arts jobs and fostering collaboration among the visual, performing and culinary arts.

English and Malmuth will both be speakers at Bisnow's Design Matters: San Diego Construction & Development event July 31 at the Westin San Diego.