Daily Business Report — Oct. 8, 2014
Rendering of the Pendry San Diego that will be built on J St., between Fifth and Sixth avenues in Downtown San Diego.
Downtown San Diego to Get Luxury Hotel
The Robert Green Company and Montage Hotels & Resorts are breaking ground today on Downtown San Diego’s newest hotel — Pendry San Diego, a 12- story high-rise that will offer 317 guest rooms, including 36 suites.
The hotel will be on J Street, between Fifth and Sixth avenues.
Scheduled to open in 2016, Pendry San Diego will include a rooftop pool, two restaurants, ultra-lounge, a beer hall, a spa and energizing fitness facility, and over 22,000 square feet of meeting space.
The Robert Green Company is a privately held real estate development company headquartered in Encinitas. It was founded by Robert S. Green Jr. more than 15 years ago.
Montage Hotels & Resorts is a hotel and resort management company founded by Alan J. Fuerstman.
Huge Fishfarm Proposed Off the San Diego Coast
Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute and Cuna del Mar LP, a private equity firm, have filed permit applications to build and operate a 5,000-metric ton finfish farm off the San Diego Coast.
The applicants have formed the Rose Canyon Fisheries to entitle, construct and operate the farm.
“About 91 percent of the seafood consumed in the U.S. — worth $14 billion annually — is imported,” said Don Kent, president and CEO of the research institute and acting CEO of Rose Canyon Fisheries. “There is enormous need for new domestic supplies of safe, healthy, sustainable and locally sourced seafood.”
Kent said wild fisheries around the world are reaching their limits. “Worldwide, fully half of all seafood is now produced by aquaculture, yet the U.S. grows only 2.5 percent of its own supply,” he said. “With the U.S. seafood demand projected to increase by another 2 million metric tons within the next decade, all signs point to the need develop economically and environmentally sustainable domestic aquaculture.”
The collaborators said that once the farm is operational, it will create jobs in hatchery and feed production, equipment manufacturing, port facilities, seafood processing and food service, and reinvigorate underutilized seafood infrastructure.“The time has come to launch a new industry — commercially successful and environmentally sustainable aquaculture in the U.S.,” said Robert Orr, managing partner of Cuna del Mar and board chair of Rose Canyon Fisheries. “We expect the success of this project to provide a new paradigm for domestic seafood production and thereby catalyze nationwide
Kent and Orr anticipate that permitting will take 12 to 18 months from a number of agencies, including the California Coastal Commission, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and California Department of Fish & Wildlife.
Once permits are in place, the principals anticipate one year in construction and two years phasing in production and growing the first crop of fish. Commercial-scale harvesting will begin after about three years.
Celadon Wins Builders Choice Grand Award
Celadon, a 250-unit apartment high-rise under construction at Ninth Avenue and Broadway in Downtown San Diego, received the 2014 Builder’s Choice Grand Award by BUILDER Magazine. The development will offer affordable housing to seniors and post-foster young adults.
Developed by BRIDGE Housing with architecture by SVA Architects in collaboration with Studio E, Celadon at 9th and Broadway will be available for households with incomes ranging from 30 percent to 60 percent of the area median income, with monthly rents varying from $408 to $879.
The project also features on-site shared amenities for an intergenerational resident population, including a kitchen, media room, a laundry room, a supportive services office, a seminar room with kitchen, and outdoor space that includes barbecues and a resident garden.
Celadon will welcome residents in February 2015.
Mayor Kevin Faulconer Takes Up Call
For Mandatory Water Use Restrictions
Mayor Kevin Faulconer announced Tuesday that he’s joining a call to impose mandatory water use restrictions on San Diego residents and businesses because of the continuing drought. The proposal is set to go before the City Council’s Environment Committee today. Councilmen David Alvarez, who chairs the committee, and Ed Harris called last week for making the now-voluntary restrictions mandatory.
Faulconer said he, too, is calling for mandatory restrictions since the drought shows no sign of easing and state water reserves are dangerously low.
He noted, however, that San Diego residents have responded to the voluntary measures by cutting back use by 5.7 percent in September and 4.4 percent in August.
Halla Rezak, director of the city’s Public Utilities Department, said the major water wholesaler in Southern California — the Metropolitan Water District — has only 49 percent of its usual capacity available. The San Diego County Water Authority is at around 37 percent, while reservoirs serving the city of San Diego are at 44 percent of capacity, she said.
If approved by the full City Council and signed into law by the mayor, the mandatory restrictions would include measures like:
• Watering lawns three days a week, and limited to seven minutes per station during the cooler weather months.
• Using hoses with shut-off nozzles or timed-sprinkler systems to provide water to landscaped areas.
• Washing vehicles only before 10 a.m. or after 6 p.m.
• Watering potted plants, vegetable gardens and fruit trees before 10 a.m. or after 4 p.m.
• Not watering lawns or plants on rainy days.
— City News Service
Melvin Garb Hill Center
Receives ‘Gold’ Certification
Hughes Marino announced that the Melvin Garb Hillel Center at San Diego State University has earned “Gold” level certification through the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED program. The goal of Hughes Marino’s Construction Management team when overseeing this project was to earn a minimum LEED certification of Silver.
Some of the features of the Melvin Garb Hillel Center include an energy efficient HVAC system, energy efficient appliances, the use of sustainable and recycled materials in construction, and a photovoltaic system (solar panels) on the roof.
As a result of these sustainable features, the center will enjoy lower operating costs over the life of the building, conservation of water, power and electricity, tax rebates, and improved health and safety of occupants, according to Hughes Marino.
EPA Awards $8.6 Million to Fund
Border Environmental Projects
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is awarding over $8.6 million in grants to fund environmental improvement projects along the U.S.–Mexico border. The funds were announced Tuesday during a border tour led by EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy in San Diego.
“Water, waste and environmental health concerns cross national boundaries, and environmental solutions benefit communities on both sides of our shared border,” said McCarthy. “Border environment projects have already benefitted 8 million border residents, providing 63,000 homes with first-time drinking water service and 569,000 homes with first-time wastewater services.”
The funding will be used for infrastructure, water treatment plant upgrades, New River cleanup and education campaign, electronic waste management, and border environmental health assessment.
Sequenom Purchases Intellectual Property
From Isis Innovation for $14.55 Million
Sequenom Inc., a San Diego-based company providing genetic analysis, has purchased noninvasive prenatal testing intellectual property from Isis Innovation Ltd., the technology transfer company of the University of Oxford for $14.55 million, including a $3.2 million final royalty payment under their prior agreement.
“The patents purchased from Isis Innovation will enable us to strengthen our intellectual property position worldwide, while reducing future expenditures,” said William Welch, Chief Executive Officer at Sequenom. “We look forward to leveraging this important intellectual property for additional applications of our technology in the future.”
The intellectual property purchased by Sequenom includes a portfolio of globally issued patents in the United States, Europe, Japan, Hong Kong, Canada and Australia.
bioTheranostics Names New President/CEO
bioTheranostics, a San Diego company making molecular diagnostic tests for cancer, has appointed life sciences industry veteran Nicolas Barthelemy to the position of president and CEO. Barthelemy succeeds Richard Ding, who will remain chairman of the board in addition to heading the Asia Pacific operations for parent company bioMérieux.
Barthelemy has extensive experience in the life sciences and biopharmaceutical industries. Prior to joining bioTheranostics, he held a number of executive-level positions at Life Technologies/Invitrogen, and held senior-level positions at Biogen Idec. He began his career at Merck & Co.
Barthelemy serves on the boards of several private and public life sciences companies.
Chris Carter Joins SENTRE Partners
Chris Carter, formerly of Flocke & Avoyer, has joined SENTRE Partners as a member of its acquisitions and transactional services team. Carter was a senior associate at Flocke & Avoyer, the exclusive sales and leasing agent for retail centers in the county. Born and raised in Australia, he holds a bachelor’s degree from Monash University in Melbourne and a master’s degree from University of San Diego.
Interwest Capital Names Director of Acquisitions
Interwest Capital Corp. has named Chris Meredith as director of acquisitions. He will be responsible for sourcing new acquisitions and joint venture development and equity relationships. During his career with Portfolio International Holdings, Babcock and Brown and CBRE, Meredith acquired, developed, repositioned, financed and capitalized development and investment properties totaling over $500 million of residential, hospitality and mixed-use real estate.
C. Blair Pruett Joins Mana Investments
C. Blair Pruett has joined Mana Investments as an investment partner. Pruett has more than 15 years of experience in the residential asset class. He also is the founder and principal of Northstar Pacific Partners, which provides independent third-party evaluation and management of distressed real estate assets for companies such as Bank of America, Citibank, JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo. In previous roles, he was division president for Cadence Homes of Southern California, managed staff and daily operations as division manager and vice president of land acquisition for Trumark Pacific Homes, and procured land and originated the land strategy for Ryland Homes Southern California division.