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Daily Business Report-Nov. 25, 2014

Daily Business Report-Nov. 25, 2014

An example of a shuttle that would carry people around Downtown San Diego, under a proposal by Civic San Diego.

Civic San Diego Seeks Proposals

For Downtown Shuttle System

Civic San Diego, the city agency that replaced the Centre City Development Corp., wants to make it easier for residents, workers and visitors to get around Downtown San Diego. It is seeking proposals from companies interested in developing and launching a “circulator” shuttle system that would ferry people around the Downtown area.

“The new circulator system aims to be low-cost or free and offer a fleet of environmentally friendly vehicles that will provide on-demand rides throughout Downtown to workers, residents and visitors,” the agency said in a release. “The system will also include a mobile app so that riders can locate vehicles and request pick-up service.”

The agency wants to see the new system launched by the summer of 2015.

“This new circulator system will allow people to park once and move around Downtown often, providing a convenient, cost-free way to get from Point A to Point B to Point C and beyond,” said Reese Jarrett, Civic San Diego president.

The agency has worked with the Downtown San Diego Partnership to develop ideas for the new system to ensure it was economically feasible and able to provide much-needed mobility to people.

“This is addressing that last-mile transportation dilemma that faces so many of our Downtown workers, residents and visitors,” said Kris Michell, president and CEO of the Downtown Partnership. “With this new system, you would be able to park in East Village and catch a free ride to the County Waterfront Park or to any of Downtown’s neighborhoods. Think about it: with this new free service, you can go shopping in the Marina District and have dinner in the Gaslamp without having to get back into your car and look for parking all over again. It makes the Downtown experience feel more connected and seamless.”

Jarrett said a traditional circulator shuttle, one that would have used a bus and operated on a fixed route, was initially considered, but was deemed too costly and unable to adequately address the transportation needs of those in Downtown. “We needed a mobility option that was flexible, cost-effective and nimble,” he said.

“This proposal is just one of the ways we are ensuring that Downtown is made to move,” Michell said. “The circulator system is designed to effectively address parking concerns, ensuring that more people want to work, live and visit Downtown.”

A funding source for the system has not been determined.

Proposals are due to Civic San Diego by Dec. 19, with the goal to launch the shuttle by summer 2015.  RFQ available on Civic San Diego’s website:


Convention Center

Convention Center

San Diego Convention Center Boasts

$24.2 Billion Impact in 25 Years

The San Diego Convention Center turned 25 Monday, having generated billions of dollars of economic impact and given the city another iconic landmark with its Sails Pavilion, but challenges loom.

“When we look at what this convention center has meant and what it continues to offer, that is something that as mayor, I’m very proud of,” Mayor Kevin Faulconer said. “We will continue to do great things.”

According to the San Diego Convention Center Corp., the facility has hosted 20 million people at more than 5,000 events. Its economic impact has been estimated at $24.2 billion since the 1989 opening.

More than 14 million room nights have been booked at area hotels thanks to convention center events, resulting in around $450 million in tax revenue for the city, according to the SDCCC.

“This facility is more than just tax revenues for the city — there are so many broader benefits to our community as a result of the convention center,” said City Council President Todd Gloria. “Since opening in 1989, the San Diego Convention Center has been an industry leader in the ‘green movement,’ constantly finding ways to minimize impacts from large events on the environment.”

The future of the convention center is hazy, however.

An expansion plan, which tourism officials say is necessary to attract the largest of the trade shows and keep the wildly successful Comic-Con International, is tied up in court.

If built, San Diego would have the largest amount of contiguous floor space of any convention building on the West Coast. Without it, officials in the local visitor industry contend that organizers of the really big conventions are opting to stage their events elsewhere, even though they’ve signaled that they’d like to come to San Diego.

“In this competitive environment, standing still is losing ground,” said Nico Ferraro, chairman of the corporation’s board of directors. “We must continue to find a way to build on our 25 years of success with a Phase III expansion of this facility.”

Convention center executives are also trying to get their financial books in order following several years of operating without reserves, and finalizing a plan to address more than $40 million worth of necessary capital and maintenance projects.

Among them are an $11.4 million replacement of the roof sails, which could happen in fiscal years 2017 and 2018, according to a report presented to the City Council in March.

— City News Service

Appeals Court: San Diego Regional

Transportation Plan Fails to Meet State Law

The agency that plans how to expand San Diego County’s roads and transit systems has suffered a setback. A California appeals court has ruled that SANDAG, San Diego’s regional transportation planning agency, has not adequately considered the environmental consequences of its 2050 Regional Transportation Plan.

Cars driving through City Heights on northbound 15. (Photo/Katie Schoolov/KPBS)

Cars driving through City Heights on northbound 15. (Photo/Katie Schoolov/KPBS)

Back in 2006, California legislators passed AB 32, which affirms the state’s commitment to lower greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, the equivalent of taking approximately 15 million cars off the nation’s roads.

Today’s ruling affirms a previous Superior Court decision that San Diego failed to analyze the difference between those goals and the outcome of its 2050 transportation expansion plans.

Several organizations, including the Cleveland National Forest Foundation and the Center for Biological Diversity, sued SANDAG, along with California’s Attorney General, Kamala Harris. They argued the plan is too focused on expanding freeways and not enough on alternatives such as public transit.

Attorney Cory Briggs said the appeals court agreed that SANDAG did not take an adequate look at the alternatives, namely building things such as rail lines and bike paths before expanding roads.


Expansive space at Quidel Corp.'s new headquarters.

Expansive space at Quidel Corp.’s new headquarters.

New Headquarters Completed

For Quidel Corporation

Construction of the new corporate headquarters of Quidel Corp. has been completed at One Del Mar in San Diego. The headquarters houses the company executive team and administrative offices in 30,000 square feet. Quidel’s manufacturing plan continues to operate at its existing location at 10165 McKellar Court, San Diego.

Ware Malcomb provided interior architectural and design services for the project. The tenant representative broker was Hughes Marino and the general contractor was Prevost Construction.

The office features a light open workstation, collaborative areas and alternate work spaces. Most of the private offices are located on the interior core, allowing everyone access to exterior windows and daylight. Office and conference rooms are lined with glass walls and doors to enhance the open feeling. The ceiling at the open collaborative spaces is lowered with exposed structure at the edge. This detail follows the organic curve of the building and defines the shared collaborative spaces.

“This was an exciting move for Quidel from a space dominated by private offices and high-paneled furniture into an open, flexible space that better reflects their corporate brand and identity,” said Tiffany English, principal for Ware Malcomb. “Weve designed an office interior that will help bring various departments together in a creative and comfortable environment.”

Built by a joint venture between PCL Construction, Turner Construction Company, and Flatiron, the Green Build Terminal 2 Expansion at San Diego International Airport received ENR’s Best Project Award in the Airport/Transit category.

Built by a joint venture between PCL Construction, Turner Construction Company, and Flatiron, the Green Build Terminal 2 Expansion at San Diego International Airport received ENR’s Best Project Award in the Airport/Transit category.

PCL Construction Wins Honors for

Two Big Airport Development Projects

PCL Construction has won two ENR California “Best Projects” Awards — one for the Green Build project at Terminal 2 at Lindbergh Field, and the other for the Westfield Tom Bradley International Terminal concessions modifications at Los Angeles International Airport.

The Green Build project received the Best Project Award in the Airport/Transit category. The project included a three-story, 460,000-square-foot expansion of Terminal 2, 10 new gates and a dual-level roadway.

The Westfield Tom Bradley International Terminal concessions modifications project was given an Award of Merit. The project consisted of building approximately 66,300 square feet of core and shell spaces for 47 concessions tenants on the fourth and fifth floors of the Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport.

First Angioedema Treatment Center Opens

UC San Diego Health System in partnership with the U.S. Hereditary Angioedema Association has opened the nation’s first dedicated center for diagnosing and treating diverse forms of swelling, known collectively as angioedema. The U.S. HAEA Angioedema Center at UC San Diego Health System will serve as an international referral center for people with all types of angioedema and will work closely with basic science laboratories at UC San Diego School of Medicine to better understand the condition and develop new treatments.

“The opening of this Center is an incredible step toward building a national center of excellence for the diagnosis and treatment of angioedema,” said Bruce Zuraw, professor of medicine and the center’s director. “With our research and clinical expertise and partnership with the U.S. Hereditary Angioedema Association, we can improve patients’ lives, save lives and ultimately find a cure.”

Physicians at the Center will offer comprehensive, holistic approaches to angioedema, emphasizing the importance of educating patients, families and the medical community about the condition in all its forms. Using the latest therapeutic tools, physicians will ensure that patients are correctly diagnosed and will then use novel therapies to treat and prevent acute swelling events that occur sporadically, often without clearly identifiable triggers, which may be life threatening.

Brown Law Group Founder Honored

Janice Brown

Janice Brown

The California Minority Counsel Program (CMCP) has named San Diego attorney Janice Brown to its Diversity Leader Hall of Fame.

“We’re honored to recognize Janice in our inaugural year as a true champion of diversity in the legal field and a strong believer in the importance of CMCP as a primary legal diversity organization,” said Marci Rubin executive director of CMCP.

Brown is the founder and senior partner at Brown Law Group.


Cal State San Marcos Professor Named

Carnegie African Diaspora Fellow

Moses Ochanji

Moses Ochanji

Moses Ochanji, associate professor of science education and associate director of the School of Education at California State University San Marcos, has been named a Carnegie African Diaspora Fellow by the Carnegie Corporation. The scholar program, which supports 100 short-term faculty fellowships for African-born academics, was created to support educational projects at African higher education institutions.

The fellowship will allow Ochanji to travel to his native country of Kenya in the summer of 2015 to work on a project to develop online curriculum and materials for the courses offered in the Teacher Professional Development Program at Kenyatta University in Nairobi. While there, Ochanji will collaborate with members of the university faculty.

First Friday Breakfast

The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce will host its First Friday Breakfast starting at 7:15 a.m. on Dec. 5 at the Ronald Reagan Community Center, 195 E. Douglas Ave., El Cajon. Breakfast sponsor and host is the Viejas Casino & Resort. Attendees are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy, valued at $10 or more, for the 39th annual East County Toy & Food Drive benefiting the Salvation Army. Cost to attend the breakfast is $20 per person for members, $25 per person for nonmembers. RSVPs are requested prior to Dec. 1. For more information and to RSVP, contact Sarah McCorkle at, (619) 440-6161, or visit

Most Innovative New Product Awards

Connect will hot its 27th annual Most Innovative New Product Awards at a Dec. 4 dinner at the Hyatt Regency La Jolla.

This year’s MIP Awards will be emceed by Maureen Cavanaugh of Midday Edition on KPBS and will recognize innovative new products developed in the last year in the following eight categories: Aerospace and Security Technologies, Communications and IT, Diagnostics and Research Tools, Mobile Apps, Pharmaceutical Drugs and Medical Devices, Software, Sport and Active Lifestyle Technologies and Sustainability.

Connect also will name the two recipients of the 2014 Duane Roth Distinguished Contributions Awards for Life Sciences and Technology Innovation.

The finalist exhibit hall opens at 5 p.m. The awards presentation and dinner is from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

For more information, call (858) 964-1316.

Seminar on How Businesses Can

Learn How to Reduce Energy Costs

Owners of small- and medium-sized businesses can learn how to reduce their energy costs and more at a free, bilingual seminar hosted by San Diego Gas & Electric on Dec. 4.

Owners and administrators will learn simple measures they can take to improve their businesses’ energy efficiency, find out how to save on lighting, heating and air conditioning costs, and better understand rates available for commercial customers. They also will be able to create a customized plan to reach their energy-saving goals.

The seminar, to be offered in English with Spanish interpretation, will be held at the SDG&E Energy Innovation Center, 4760 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., San Diego, 92117, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m., and a continental breakfast and lunch will be provided.

The seminar is free but registration is recommended at or by phoning 800-644-6133 and selecting seminar #9607.

A UC San Diego student examines a bacteria culture. (Photo courtesy UC San Diego)

A UC San Diego student examines a bacteria culture. (Photo courtesy UC San Diego)

California Leads U.S. in Biotech Employment and Investment

California’s national lead in the life sciences industry is growing, and San Diego plays a key role in what is emerging as one of the state’s largest industries, according to a new report by the La Jolla-based California Healthcare Institute. The report by the nonprofit, public-policy research organization showed that California leads the nation in job growth, federal research dollars, venture capital and doctoral graduates in the life sciences industry.

“The life sciences sector continues to drive our state’s 21st century economy,” said Todd E. Gillenwater, president and CEO of the institute. “270,000 Californians are employed by over 2,600 companies, with average wages topping $100,000. It is no coincidence that California is also home to 11 of the world’s top universities and that we garner more federal biomedical research dollars than any other state in the nation.”

San Diego accounts for 14 percent of life science jobs and 17 percent of the venture capital, while UC San Diego ranked with Stanford University and UC San Francisco as a top recipient of federal research grants.

Personnel Moves

Terri Schmid Promoted at Swinerton Builders

Terri Schmid

Terri Schmid

Terri Schmid has been promoted to project executive at Swinerton Builders San Diego. Schmid previously was senior project manager. She has more than 25 years of construction management experience in a variety of markets.

Focusing on tenant improvement projects under $10 million, under her leadership the Special Projects team recently completed projects in hospitals, universities, mid-rise condos, data centers, hotels, casinos, theaters, office buildings, and restaurants. She now heads a team of over nine project managers, seven project engineers, and nearly 15 superintendents.

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Voice Your Opinion

We Want Your Opinions on San Diego’s Big Issues In the coming months, Probosky Research (one of California’s leading opinion research firms) will continue its partnership with SD METRO to survey San Diego residents about topics of interest to our readers. We’d like to throw open the door for suggestions for topics. What do you want to know? What do you think you know, but aren’t sure? What are you certain you know, but want to prove it beyond doubt? Ideally, we’d like to see questions that have to do with public policy.

Some areas may include Mayor Filner’s first 100 days job performance, should the city be responsible for economic growth and the creation of new jobs, how important are infrastructure improvements to our daily lives (streets and bridges, etc.), how important is water independence, how satisfied are residents with public transit or how do city residents value Balboa Park and other open spaces? Do you believe the City Council should revive the Plaza de Panama plan for Balboa Park?

You can email Probolsky Research directly with your ideas: