Daily Business Report-June 10, 2014
Illumina’s headquarters in San Diego
Illumina and Chinese Company to Co-Develop
Genomic Diagnostic System for Reproductive Health
San Diego-based Illumina and Beijing-based genomics firm Annoroad announced today that they will jointly develop advanced clinical applications for reproductive health based on next-generation sequencing technology. The collaboration signals the increasing importance of genomic applications to improve health care in China.
In recent years, NGS technology has evolved rapidly and is regarded as an essential factor for enabling precision medicine. The collaboration between Annoroad and Illumina will focus on providing the most advanced and integrated sequencing solutions to the clinical market. In particular, the two companies will work together to develop a user-friendly, prenatal DNA diagnostic system for the Chinese market.
“Non-invasive prenatal testing is used widely in the reproductive health arena, and we hope to promote it as a standard practice in hospitals,” Junbin Liang, Annoroad’s founder and CEO, said in a statement. Liang added that China’s National Health and Family Planning Commission had previously appointed Annoroad as one of China’s first national clinical pilot sites for NGS.
“Illumina is very excited to collaborate with Annoroad to increase access to reproductive health solutions in China,” said Tristan Orpin, senior vice president and general manager of Illumina’s Reproductive and Genetic Health business.
The alliance comes a day after Illumina said that it is collaborating with Germany’s Merck KGaA and Australian fertility firm Genea to improve fertility-related technologies and laboratory processes.
Aside from reproductive health, Annoroad has also developed NGS diagnostics in the field of cancer and rare disease. The firm also provides sequencing and bioinformatics services for research.
Carlsbad Proposal Envisions Large
Shopping and Entertainment Complex
Caruso Affiliated has filed a development plan with the city of Carlsbad for a 585,000-square-foot outdoor shopping and entertainment complex adjacent to the ecologically sensitive Agua Hedionda Lagoon.
The company said the development would be anchored by Seattle-based Nordstrom.
“The pedestrian-friendly promenade … reflects the community’s strong desire to welcome high-quality retail to Carlsbad and will serve as a world-class lifestyle destination for the Carlsbad community,” the company said in a release.
The Agua Hedionda 85/15 Plan filed last month with the city will conserve and create new access to 85 percent (176 acres) of the land along the south shore of the Agua Hedionda Lagoon and 15 percent of the land (26 acres) will be reserved for visitor retail, according to the company.
The Nordstrom store is planned as a two-level, full-line store totaling approximately 123,000 square feet.
“Other community wishes for the pedestrian-friendly, open-air promenade will include a curated collection of high-quality retailers, both local, independent merchants and global brands, along with a best-in-class market and state-of-the-art movie theater,” the company said. “Dining options will range from casual on-the go eateries to sit-down, approachable and full-service operations, including chef-driven concepts and local farm-to-table eateries offering fresh produce from the Carlsbad Strawberry Company, grown on the property. “
The company filed the plan as a citizen-led initiative with the Carlsbad city clerk’s office. Paid solicitors began gathering signatures for the initiative last week. If they collect valid signatures from at least 15 percent of Carlsbad’s registered voters, the initiative will be presented to the Carlsbad City Council, which can either approve the measure without changes or place it on a special election ballot.
Orthopedics Program at Rady Children’s
Hospital Ranked 2nd in the United States
The Orthopedics program at Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego has been ranked as the No. 2 program in the United States by U.S. News & World Report in its Best Children’s Hospitals rankings.
For the fifth year in a row, the hospital achieved rankings in all 10 specialties surveyed.
Based on a combination of clinical data and reputation surveys of pediatric specialists, the Best Children’s Hospitals rankings highlight U.S. News’s top 50 U.S. pediatric facilities in cancer, cardiology and heart surgery, diabetes and endocrinology, gastroenterology and GI surgery, neonatology, nephrology, neurology & neurosurgery, orthopedics, pulmonology and urology.
“At Rady Children’s, we are committed to leading the way in pediatric medicine by providing advanced, patient-focused care, whether it’s mending a broken bone or performing a heart transplant,” said Rady Children’s President and CEO Donald Kearns. “As we enter into a new frontier of genomics research and personalized medicine, it’s gratifying to know that U.S News recognizes our enduring commitment to providing a full spectrum of the best possible care to every child.”
U.S. News introduced the Best Children’s Hospitals rankings in 2007 to help families of children with rare or life-threatening illnesses find the best medical care available. The rankings open the door to an array of detailed information about each hospital’s performance.
Median Home Price Continues
Upward Trend in San Diego County
The median month-over-month price of San Diego County resale homes increased by 2 percent in May, and was 7 percent higher than a year ago, according to new housing statistics from the Greater San Diego Association of Realtors.
Single-family home median prices reached the $530,000 mark last month. Condos and townhome prices increased to $348,000 in May, which also represents a 2 percent increase over April, and a 6 percent increase over last year.
Sales slowed for single-family homes in May, down by 10 percent from April. Sales of condos and townhomes were down 7 percent. Year-to-date sales of all previously owned homes are up about 3 percent over last year.
Inventory levels continue to languish at about 2.5 months. Five to six months is considered a healthy inventory level. It follows that escrows are closing quickly, within only five weeks after being listed.
The most expensive listing sold in the county in May was a six-bedroom, six-bath, 4,000-square-foot home on the coast in Del Mar, built in 1958, with a sale price of $11 million.
Viability of Hydroelectric Project at
San Vicente Reservoir to be Studied
The San Diego City Council Tuesday unanimously approved an agreement with the County Water Authority to study the viability of a hydroelectric energy storage system at the city-owned San Vicente Reservoir near Lakeside.
The two-year, $900,000 study will build on an assessment conducted last year that found such a system could produce $1 billion-2 billion of revenue for the city over its lifetime.
In March, city officials estimated a cost of $1 billion to construct the storage plant, partly because a second, smaller reservoir would have to be built.
An in-depth analysis is needed to select the optimal size of the project, the most attractive business model, and the optimal strategic positioning for the partnering agencies, city officials said.
According to city staff, the goal of what they call the “pumped water storage project” would be to offset increasing costs of energy and imported water, and help the city meet its climate action plan goals.
A city report says the plan is to create what is essentially a large battery that would be capable of delivering 500 megawatts of power, for eight hours a day, to the grid during periods of high demand.
The council approved the item without comment, as part of its consent calendar.
— City News Service
227 Homes Planned for Otay Ranch
Presidio Residential Capital and Cornerstone Communities have purchased 44 acres in Otay Ranch in Chula Vista to build 227 single-family homes.
Otay 225 will be in Otay Ranch Village 2 and will break ground by the end of the year. The retail value is pegged at more than $128 million.
The houses will range from 1,800-square-foot cottages to 3,400-square-foot executive homes located on Heritage Road off of Olympic Parkway.
As part of Otay Ranch, residents will have access to the Otay Ranch Swim Club and the neighborhood’s hiking and biking trails.
Presidio and Cornerstone have partnered on three other projects, including
Pacific Ridge, a 317-lot community in Oceanside that broke ground in March,and Quarry Creek, a 636-lot neighborhood in Carlsbad, which will break ground this month.
San Dieguito River Conservancy Awarded
$20,000 Grant for Del Mar River Path
The San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy (SDRVC) has been awarded a $20,000 grant from the William Hall Tippett and Ruth Rathell Tippett Foundation toward construction of the Del Mar River Path.
The River Path provides a scenic overlook of the San Dieguito Lagoon and River, complete with interpretive signage of the flora and fauna of the River and Lagoon. The existing trail goes from Jimmy Durante Boulevard westwards to the coast and parallels the south edge of the river, providing beautiful water views and information regarding this important wetland and natural resource.
This grant will help fund the construction of the portion of Del Mar’s River Path from Jimmy Durante Boulevard east to the Old Grand Avenue Bridge, providing scenic vistas of the lagoon wetlands and interpretive information of the flora and fauna.
The total project cost is estimated at $475,000. This cost includes project design, entitlements and easement acquisition, environmental review and mitigation, and construction.
Dempsey Finishes Construction of
Seven Mile Casino in Chula Vista
Dempsey Construction has completed the construction of the new upscale Seven Mile Casino located at 285 Bay Boulevard in Chula Vista.
Seven Mile Casino is an exclusive gambling club, offering California Blackjack, Poker, Baccarat and Pai Gow, accompanied by a full-service restaurant and bar.
The new 14,000-square-foot facility consists of a large porte cochere entry, 30-foot-high elevated ceilings in the main card room, Blackjack, Poker, Baccarat and Pai Gow tables throughout, two high limit areas, a full-service kitchen, indoor and outdoor bar area with exterior patio areas containing multiple fire pits and water features.
Interior improvements included the installation of a complex AV and security system throughout the entire facility, custom high-end lighting, a full-service commercial kitchen, multiple bar areas, gambling rooms, indoor/outdoor dining areas, and custom aquarium. Exterior improvements included the construction of the main porte cochere entry, outdoor dining patios with multiple water features, fire elements and AV enhancements. The design architect was Joseph Wong Design Architects of San Diego and the interior design was handled by Davis Ink of Costa Mesa.
Women’s Museum of California Hosts
Wine, Cheese and Chocolate Festival
The Women’s Museum of California will host its annual Wine, Cheese and Chocolate Festival on Friday, June 26, on the North Promenade at Liberty Station in Point Loma.
The festival includes 12 free tastings of wine, cheese and chocolate from manufacturers and local chefs. It also includes dancing to the music of Sue Palmer, Queen of Boogie Woogie.
All proceeds go toward funding exhibits, educational programming and operations at the Women’s Museum.
Click here to purchase tickets.
Mesa College Students Advance to Final
Round of Statewide Business Plan Competition
San Diego Mesa College students Tyler Aloe of Pacific Beach and Celine Ahearn of North Park will face off against competitors from two other community colleges in the final round of the statewide “Get a Taste of Success” Business Plan Pitch Competition on June 19 in Sacramento.
Aloe and Ahearn will travel to the Small Business Summit in Sacramento to present their pitch for “Take ‘N’ Charge” — mobile kiosks that rent chargers for mobile devices — live in front of a panel of business experts.
Mesa College’s “Take ‘N’ Charge” is one of three community college teams to advance to the statewide finals after besting other teams in 10 regional competitions across the state. The other two college teams are “Inspired Aquaponics” from Cañada College, and “SkyScout” from Irvine Valley College. Santa Barbara, West Valley and El Modena teams advanced in the high school competition.
Aloe, along with Class of 2015 Valedictorian Ahearn, will pitch their idea for “Take ‘N’ Charge,” which helps smartphone and tablet users keep their devices charged. “Take ‘N’ Charge” features strategically placed kiosks where mobile device users can rent a pre-charged power bank for smartphones and tablets. Used chargers can then be returned to any location. “Take ‘N’ Charge” (www.takencharge.com) has already been rolled out in select locations throughout San Diego.
“Mesa has been a great place to learn the fundamentals of business,” said Aloe, a Business Administration major who cited Mesa College Assistant Business Professor Howard Eskew as an integral part of “Take ‘N’ Charge” development. “Celine and I learned the importance of financial budgeting and preparing for the future in Professor Eskew’s class.”
Monetary prizes of $500, $1,000 and $2,000 will be given to the third, second and first place winner.
County Gets Money to Install
Automated Vehicle Locators
The county Board of Supervisors accepted a $276,000 donation from the San Diego Regional Fire Foundation to purchase and install automated vehicle locators on emergency vehicles such as fire engines.
Eighty additional firetrucks will be outfitted with the new tracking system that aims to make the backcountry safer for San Diego County residents.
The equipment allows vehicles to transmit their location from a device the size of a cable box to CAL FIRE. Using this GPS information, the agency can then dispatch the closest unit to an emergency and have the fastest response time to 9-1-1 calls.
The funds accepted Tuesday will allow the county to increase the number of automated vehicle locators on San Diego County Fire Authority and CAL FIRE vehicles from 112 to 192. Supervisor Ron Roberts said the goal is to have the devices on all county emergency equipment.
Twenty-three rural stations across the county will now have the technology. Funding for the donation from the San Diego Regional Fire Foundation was made by San Diego Gas & Electric.
Supervisors Postpone Free Speech Vote
The San Diego County Board of Supervisors Tuesday delayed a vote on a controversial proposal to require permits for large groups conducting political activities at the Waterfront Park outside the County Administration Center.
After some discussion the supervisors decided more time was needed to review the proposal and make changes before going to a vote.
A report by county staff says the park, since opening last year, has become a popular venue for people who wish to exercise their First Amendment right to free speech. They gravitate to the busier sections of the park, like recreational areas and walkways.
Groups of 200 or more people involved in free speech activities would be required to obtain a First Amendment Activity Permit and conduct their event in one of several designated park zones that would not interfere with government operations, according to the proposal.
Groups that bring amplified sound equipment, tables, chairs and other staging equipment would also be required to obtain a permit, regardless of the size of the group.
If such groups do not acquire a permit ahead of time, they would be offered a chance to relocate to a free speech zone. If none is available, they would have to leave to park, according to the report.
— City News Service
Tammy Endozo Reappointed to State Board
Tammy Endozo, 44, of Imperial Beach, has been reappointed to the California Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians by Gov. Jerry Brown. Endozo has been on board since 2013.
Endozo has served as a licensed vocational nurse at the Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility since 2006. She was a licensed vocational nurse at Scripps Mercy Hospital from 2003 to 2011 and a residential care unit leader and licensed vocational nurse at the Veterans Home of California, Chula Vista from 2000 to 2006. Endozo was a licensed vocational nurse at the University Community Medical Center in San Diego from 1998 to 2004, at the San Diego County Edgemoor Hospital from 1998 to 2000 and at Friendship Manor-Lakeside Nursing Home from 1996 to 2000.
The position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $100 per diem. Endozo is a Democrat.