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Daily Business Report-Aug. 12, 2015

Daily Business Report-Aug. 12, 2015

Rendering submitted by Anthony’s Fish Grotto.

Back in the Game

Port Adds Anthony’s in Competition

For Watefront Development Rights

San Diego port commissioners on Tuesday accepted Anthony’s Fish Grotto’s request to include it as a finalist to redevelop its site at the Downtown waterfront.

That means the port will begin negotiations with Anthony’s, Sunroad Enterprises and The Brigantine Inc. with the idea of selecting one of them to remake the site.

Port staff had earlier recommended that the commissioners authorize them to initiate talks with Sunroad Enterprises and The Brigantine but not Anthony’s, a fixture on the waterfront since 1946.

However, the Anthony’s owners asked the commissioners to include them among the finalists, and the request was accepted, according to port spokeswoman Tanya Castaneda.

The 52-year Anthony’s lease expires Jan. 31, 2017, so the port requested developers to send in proposals. The port received six sets of plans and staff recommended moving forward with Sunroad and the Brigantine.

Sunroad proposes a two-story building housing five restaurants, including a Stone Brewery company store and tasting room and Blue Point Coastal Cuisine from the Cohn Restaurant Group, which operates local favorites like Corvette Diner and Indigo Grill.

The Brigantine proposal would include four eateries. One would be under its Brigantine name and another would be from its chain of six Mexican restaurants — Miguel’s Cocina. Two others would also operate in the building.

Anthony’s suggested a joint venture with Fish Market Restaurants Inc. that would include operating a revitalized version of Anthony’s, a fast-casual eatery and a third facility catering to higher-end patrons.

The port has given the three finalists permission to alter their plans since they now have looked at each proposal.

ShredLights, which provides illumination for nighttime skateboarding, was created by a student team in the Zahn Innovation Center. Photo: Tim Mantoani

ShredLights, which provides illumination for nighttime skateboarding, was created by a student team in the Zahn Innovation Center. Photo: Tim Mantoani

SDSU Receives $5.1 Million Gift

To Foster Innovation, New Ventures

The Moxie Foundation has awarded San Diego State University a $5.1 million gift to strengthen the university’s capacity to prepare students for innovative problem-solving.

The endowed gift will create the Zahn Innovation Platform (ZIP), the Zahn Chair of Creativity and Innovation, the Zahn Professorship of Creativity and Innovation, and the Irwin Zahn Spirit of Innovation Prize.

ZIP will be a campus-wide hub for collaboration across disciplines, the exploration of new ideas and the launch of new ventures. ZIP will facilitate problem-solving and inspire students, faculty and staff to pursue their creative ideas.  The Zahn Chair of Creativity and Innovation is a new staff position that will help lead these ZIP initiatives:

• The ZIP Launchpad is an expansion of the incubator capacity that has been central to SDSU’s entrepreneurial mission. This includes the HG Fenton Idea Lab, which offers state of the art experimentation and prototyping.

• The ZIP Lab will use Design Thinking to facilitate collaborative problem solving for all types of design challenges across campus and in the community.

• The ZIP Lounge is an open, creative space for informal brainstorming, co-working and planned events, which will also serve as shared space with SDSU’s Lavin Entrepreneurship Center.

• ZIP will expand SDSU’s Zahn Innovation Center, established in 2012 as a commercial and social incubator to support entrepreneurship on campus. The success of Zahn Center startups has helped SDSU break into the top 25 on FORBES Magazine’s list of America’s Most Entrepreneurial Universities.


San Diego International Airport

San Diego International Airport

Airport Must Encourage People

Not to Use New Parking Garage

By Voice of San Diego

San Diego International Airport officials are expected to get the green light today to build an $80 million mega parking structure on North Harbor Drive — with a curious caveat. They must encourage the public not to use it.

Staff at the California Coastal Commission is recommending board approval for the three-story, 3,000-space garage that will service Terminal 2 if, and only if, the airport agrees to several conditions — many centered on encouraging people to take public transit to the airport, bypassing the need to park there.

The conditions mark a compromise between the two agencies, which have been wrangling over the garage for months. A flurry of letters between the airport and Coastal Commission staffers — whose job it is to enforce the state’s Coastal Act –show the commission pushed for a better explanation of why the garage was needed.

Commission staffers also wanted to know what had changed since 2009, when airport officials said they wouldn’t build the parking garage in order to encourage passengers to use public transit, rideshare and private parking lots away from the coast.

“This will be a major airport terminal expansion encouraging airport users to utilize existing public transportation rather than expand vehicle parking,” airport planning Manager Ted Anasis wrote March 27, 2009, during permit talks for the $1 billion Green Build project. “SDIA must consider this approach in order to reduce passenger and employee reliance on individual automobile use that requires vehicle parking.”

Read the full story here.

San Diego County Housing

Affordability Down to 25 Percent

By City News Service

A surge in demand for housing in San Diego County and statewide during the second quarter of this year drove down affordability for prospective buyers, the California Association of Realtors reported Tuesday.

According to the CAR, 25 percent of households could afford to purchase a single-family home in San Diego County at the median price of nearly $548,000. That’s down from 28 percent in the first quarter of this year and 26 percent in the second quarter last year, according to the association.

To afford a house in San Diego County, a household would require a minimum annual income of $108,390 to make monthly payments of $2,700 — including principal, interest, and taxes on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage at 3.95 percent interest rate.

Statewide, 30 percent of Californians could afford a median-priced house, according to CAR’s Traditional Housing Affordability Index..

Just 10 percent of households could afford to purchase a median-priced house in San Francisco, according to CAR data. The most affordable region was Kings County, where 62 percent could afford such a residence.

Nationwide, 57 percent of households could afford to buy a median-priced house, according to CAR.

Retail center in Carmel Mountain Ranch

Retail center in Carmel Mountain Ranch

Capstone Advisors Acquires

Retail Center for $12.7 Million

Carlsbad real estate development firm Capstone Advisors has purchased a 30,421-square-foot retail center in Carmel Mountain Ranch from American Assets Trust for $12.7 million.

The center is located on the northeast corner of Ted Williams Parkway and Rancho Carmel Drive at 10155-10195 Rancho Carmel Drive. Built in 1993 and consisting of three buildings, the property is 96 percent leased with tenants including USE Credit Union, Starbucks, and Oggi’s Pizza and Brewing. Capstone plans to enhance the property by upgrading tenant signage and developing the landscape.

American Assets Trust was represented by CB Richard Ellis. Cushman & Wakefield will manage leasing for the retail center.

Donald Durden, UC San Diego School of Medicine

Donald Durden, UC San Diego School of Medicine

Therapeutic Agent for Pediatric

Cancer Developed at UC San Diego

Donald L. Durden, pediatric researcher at UC San Diego School of Medicine and Moores Cancer Center has identified and developed a novel therapeutic target for neuroblastoma, the second most common solid-tumor childhood cancer. The agent, named SF1126, acts by inhibiting the part of the cancer cell engine that promotes tumor angiogenesis and growth.

“This is the first time that a PI-3 kinase inhibitor has been used to treat a child with cancer,” said Durden. “This agent has been shown to be safe and effective in adults and is now being evaluated in pediatric patients. We are incredibly excited to see how this agent progresses in clinical trials.”

In some children, neuroblastoma tumors spontaneously regress. In children with high grade disease, however, the cancer is metastatic and can become resistant to the best available standard therapy. Between 20 and50 percent of high-risk neuroblastoma cases do not respond adequately to high-dose chemotherapy. In 50 percent of patients, the cancer spreads to other parts of the body.

“We are hopeful that this discovery at Moores Cancer Center may lead to an effective therapy for this vexing pediatric cancer. More of these novel agents need to be developed to help this incredibly fragile population of children,” said Scott Lippman, director of Moores Cancer Center.

S.D. Convention Center Corp. President

To Receive Lifetime Achievement Award

Carol Wallace

Carol Wallace

Carol Wallace, president and CEO of the San Diego Convention Center Corp., has been named to receive the 2015 Convention Center Lifetime Acievement Award at the International Convention Center Conference Oct. 1-3 in Atlanta. The award will be presented by the International Association of Venue Managers.

Wallace has been active in the convention center business since her first job as the assistant general manager of the Dallas Convention Center in 1980. She went on to become the executive director at the Colorado Convention Center, before joining the San Diego Convention Center Corp. in 1991 as the general manager. She was promoted to her current role as CEO in 1994, where she has served with seven mayors and 22 chairs of the corporation’s board of directors.

Wallace has been at the helm of the San Diego Convention Center Corp. for nearly 24 years. She is a past president of the International Association of Venue Managers. n 2014, the Professional Convention Management Association named her a Professional Achievement Supplier Honoree. In 2004, she received the industry’s highest honor: the IAVM Charles A. McElroy Award for outstanding contributions to the industry.

FedEx Ground to Pay $1.75 Million

For Mishandling Hazardous Waste

FedEx Ground Package System Inc. has been ordered to pay $1.75 million as part of a settlement in a case involving claims the Pennsylvania-based company was illegally transporting and storing hazardous waste, San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis announced Tuesday.

The County of San Diego Department of Environmental Health and County Counsel played an integral part in the investigation. Prosecutors said prior to June 1, 2013, the company failed to adequately train its employees regarding the proper handling of the waste and failing to appropriately dispose of the waste.

The DA’s office worked with 15 other district attorney’s offices around the state, with a lawsuit filed in Sacramento County. Two of the 36 FedEx Ground facilities involved were in San Diego County.

FedEx Ground also will be bound under the terms of a permanent injunction prohibiting similar future violations of law. The company was cooperative during the investigation.

At UC San Diego, all new landscaping uses drought-tolerant plants (above).

At UC San Diego, all new landscaping uses drought-tolerant plants (above).

UC San Diego 7th ‘Coolest’ School in Nation

UC San Diego has been named the seventh  “Coolest School” by Sierra magazine, climbing 10 spots from last year in the publication’s annual ranking of America’s greenest colleges. Sierra magazine is a publication of the Sierra Club.

According to the editors at Sierra magazine, factors that helped schools like UC San Diego land in the top 10 included having dining halls that serve organic and local foods; waste systems that divert trash from landfills; transportation options that keep students and staff out of cars; academic programs that are heavily eco-focused; and strong methods to conserve water and energy.

“Sustainability is a top priority in UC San Diego’s education, research and campus operations,” said Gary C. Matthews, vice chancellor for resource management and planning. “From building green to saving water to offering hundreds of sustainability related classes, our efforts are changing not only the campus, but also the minds of the students we’re educating.”

AltheaDx and Sinfonia Rx

Partner on Mental Health

San Diego-based AltheaDx and SinfoniaRx announced a deal to integrate AltheaDx’s IDgenetix proprietary genetic testing into Sinfonia’s medication therapy management programs directed at mental illness.

AltheaDx offers tests for use by clinicians to tailor treatments for cardiovascular disease, neuropsychiatric disorders, and pain. The company filed to go public in December with plans to raise up to $69 million in proceeds but withdrew those plans in March citing unattractive terms.

Assurance Health and Wellness Centers in Phoenix and Tucson, Ariz. will initially offer the enhanced MTM service, the companies said, adding that the deal will result in “an unprecedented level of drug therapy optimization and customization for individual patients.”

SinfoniaRx and Assurance Health andWellnessCenters are wholly owned subsidiaries of Sinfonia Healthcare.

Financial and other terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“The testing offered by AltheaDx will allow us to better understand how our patients will respond to medications based on their own genetic profile,” SinfoniaRx Founder and CEO Kevin Boesen said in a statement.

AltheaDx CEO Greg Hamilton added that his firm’s research has suggested that genetic testing can identify “more than twice the number of potential drug-related problems when compared to usual practice.”

UC San Diego Researchers Join

Center for Precision Genetics

Researchers from the UC San Diego are joining the Center for Precision Genetics, a center being established by The Jackson Laboratory through a $10 million grant from the National Institutes of Health.

The center will act as the hub of a multi-institute network of investigators working to develop precision models of disease.

The funding, which will be provided over five years, will enable the center to “generate new disease-modeling processes and pipelines, data resources, research results, and models that will be swiftly shared through (the Jackson Lab’s) proven dissemination pipelines to accelerate translation to medical benefit,” said Edison Liu, president and CEO of Jackson Lab.

The center will include geneticists, molecular and computational biologists, and clinicians from the UC San Diego; Emory University; Cedars Sinai Medical Center; Columbia University Medical Center; Nationwide Children’s Hospital; the University of Massachusetts Medical School; and the University of California, San Francisco.

The first year’s funding of nearly $2 million will be used to launch six projects focused on improving the precision of disease models and the efficiency of preclinical pipelines, the Jackson Lab said.

Cushman & Wakefield Chosen as Leasing Team

Emmes Realty Services of California LLC, a member of The Emmes Group of Companies, has selected Cushman & Wakefield as the exclusive leasing team for its 1.45 million-square-foot Downtown San Diego office portfolio. The four-asset portfolio includes 1 Columbia Place, 2 Columbia Place, 701 B Street, and 707 Broadway (707).

In addition to the extensive renovations at 1 Columbia Place, major improvements and amenity additions are currently underway at 701 B Street and at 707, with the grand opening of a new lobby at 701 B planned for September.

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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.

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