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Pacific Building Group Lands Tech Tenant At New Carmel Mountain Ranch Repositioning

With creative office rents rising in popular submarkets, some users are seeking less expensive space. We caught up with Pacific Building Group president Jim Roherty to hear about how the firm attracted a new tech tenant to a property it recently repositioned.


Jim tells us Pacific Building lured Daybreak Game Co, a video game developer, to leave an outdated space in the Miramar area for a 60k SF building at 15051 Ave of Science in SD’s Carmel Mountain Ranch neighborhood that was repositioned as creative space by the SD-based company.

Among the big attractions was the gaming firm wanting to be in a desirable environment—including lots of surrounding retail amenities. Jim says the property on Ave of Science was an outdated traditional office building.


The freestanding, single-tenant building was gutted and transformed to a modern hub for game developers. The build-out features a lounge area (pictured) with a garage-style roll-up door, booth seating and bar-height tables; large training and gaming spaces; a theater; low lighting for extended screen time; collaborative and private gaming spaces; and electric car charging stations.

The design included elements like exposed wood and cement, acoustic ceilings and high-quality carpet to improve comfort. The architect was FS Design Group, a locally based interior design firm. Jim tells us the reno cost was about $4M.


Jim says his company has done creative conversions for a number of companies, including Qualcomm, Sony, Verizon, I Boss (tech) and Kilroy Realty. The biggest challenge, Jim says, in doing creative office projects is timing. “Everyone wants it done 10% to 15% faster, and the design and construction can be more challenging than typical build-outs.”

He notes unlike LA and the Bay Area, skilled labor is not a big problem in SD County, but rather delays involving delivery of materials and finish products, particularly light fixtures, carpet, HVAC systems and millwork, are what slow down projects.


Even Daybreak's lobby (pictured) provides a modern setting with exposed cement, raw wood elements and lounge furniture.

Jim says Pacific Building completed the space in 12 to 13 weeks, but should have had 16 weeks, noting his crew worked a shift and a half or two shifts daily to meet the deadline. Additionally, high-tech companies require rooms occupied by computer servers to be completed a few weeks in advance to allow ample time for setting up, so the space is fully operational when the company moves in. Jim says this client wanted the data and server rooms done in eight weeks.

He says the key to success scheduling this type of project is to get the owner, architect and contractor together during the design phase, months before construction starts.

Some of the biggest players in creating futuristic spaces will be speaking at Bisnow's San Diego Future of Real Estate event March 10. Info and registration here!