Urban Core Primed for Growth
Remember when Downtown San Diego was mostly the haunt of sailors on shore leave? We don't either. Downtown's come a long way since then, and is going to change even more in the coming years. That's why we're excited to hold Bisnow's Evolution of Downtown event on Nov. 13 at the Westin San Diego, starting at 8am.
AVRP Studios CEO Doug Austin, who will speak at the event, is a long-standing believer in the future of East Village, relocating his firm there and taking an active role in Downtown’s redevelopment as a Centre City Development Corp (now Civic San Diego) director, among other roles. Doug tells us that East Village in the coming years will see more activity, more walkable streets and more innovative design—which AVRP is working on. Snapped: Doug and the key people on the firm’s Ariel Luxury Apartments project: Pablo Collin, project manager; Amanda Wynne, project coordinator; and Sharon Rissling, project architect during construction.
Doug says he can’t divulge any details of the next East Village project just yet, but he does say it will represent less expensive development techniques, while being greener. Last week, AVRP won a Citation Award from AIA San Diego for its design of Ariel Luxury Apartments in Little Italy. The 25-story mixed-use property includes 224 high-end apartments and 18k SF of retail space on the ground floor, featuring a pool deck with a gym and an outdoor BBQ area as well as a green roof. Its five levels of subterranean parking accommodate 237 residential parking spaces and 40 retail spaces.
HP Investors principal Sumeet Parekh, who will also speak at the Future of Downtown, tells us that as an investor, his firm looks for retail, especially in the urban core. “We like urban retail for a long-term hold,” he says, because Downtown has the best long-term demographic outlook of any market in San Diego. Population growth Downtown is much more robust than elsewhere in the city—especially among people with relatively high incomes--while at the same time the supply of retail properties in the area is constrained.
Recently, HP Investors joined the team of developers planning the mixed-use Makers Quarter, buying out the interest of Portman Holdings. “The Makers Quarter opportunity will allow us to make a big splash—an opportunity to create retail from scratch that makes sense for the East Village,” Sumeet says. Makers Square is already attracting a lot of attention during events, such as the recent groundbreaking for the Urban Discovery Academy, a charter school that will be part of Makers Quarter. To hear more, please join us for Bisnow's Evolution of Downtown event on Nov. 13 at the San Diego Westin, starting at 8am. Sign up here!