Daily Business Report-April 13, 2016
San Diego apartments. The report said average rents are expected to rise to $1,577.
Renting an Apartment in San Diego
Is Going to Get More Expensive
By City News Service
Apartment-dwellers in San Diego County can look forward to the highest projected rent increases in Southern California over the next two years, thanks to growing demand and low vacancy rates, according to a report released Tuesday.
The study prepared by Beacon Economics for the Lusk Center for Real Estate said average rents are expected to rise by $155 — to $1,577 — over the next two years in San Diego County.
Elsewhere in Southern California, rents are projected to climb by $109 in Los Angeles County, $149 in Orange County and $84 in the Inland Empire.
The rent hikes and continued high demand are in spite of more than 38,000 new apartments being planned across the four areas, according to the 2016 USC Casden Multifamily Forecast.
“Though multifamily construction permits are back to pre-recession levels and have provided some relief, population and employment growth are driving up demand faster than new inventory can hit the market. For renters, new construction has simply kept a bad situation from getting drastically worse,” said Raphael Bostic, interim director of the USC Lusk Center for Real Estate.
The report notes that the improving national economy and recovery of the housing market should generally provide some relief in the rental market, California home prices are still twice the national average, making apartments a more accessible option for many people in search of a place to live.
“At a national level, it is clear that the great apartment bull market that started at the end of the great recession is coming to an end,” said Christopher Thornberg, Beacon Economics founding partner. “Local supply constraints combined with solid economic growth implies that the softening will not be experienced locally.”
Pressures on the rental market in San Diego County include the region’s lowest unemployment rate since 2007 and strong population growth, which offset increased construction. According to the report, nearly 6,300 units were authorized by building permits last year, but the vacancy rate is expected to be 4.8 percent, similar to what it is now.
Bostic also noted that most multifamily construction in Southern California, particularly in Los Angeles and Orange counties, targets higher- income renters.
“While new inventory tends to favor higher incomes and more affluent neighborhoods, there is hope for other classes of renters,” Bostic said. “High-end renters are the first to become homebuyers. As the demand for high- end dwellings slows, savvy developers will seek more projects built for people of more modest means.”
County Approves Spending
$1.3 Billion on Facilities
By City News Service
The San Diego County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved more than $1.3 billion to be spent on improving facilities and building new ones over the next five years, including libraries and government administration buildings, a fire station, sheriff’s sub-station, new crime lab and residential crisis center.
The vote was unanimous after the board watched a brief presentation by staff on what projects had already been completed, which ones were already in the planning and construction phases and still others that were recommended for approval.
“You will notice there are a lot of things that are not on there,” Chief Administrative Officer Helen Robbins-Meyer said. “The Chargers new stadium is not on there.”
The so-called Capital Improvement Needs Assessment that was presented by the County’s Community Services Group also did not mention what to do about the board chamber where the supervisors’ public meetings are held.
Chairman Ron Roberts and Vice Chairwoman Dianne Jacob both asked that the aging facility be considered in the future. Both said the chamber, with 100 seats for the public, is too small to serve a county of more than 3.2 million residents.
Recently completed projects under the current plan include the Las Colinas Women’s Detention and Reentry Facility expansion in Santee, a new county fire station in Boulevard and a new sheriff substation in Lakeside.
“This is a great document for how we are going to be serving our constituents for years to come,” Supervisor Dave Roberts said.
To Unveil Revitalized Ship Facility
Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego on Friday will unveil the reopening of its Nimitz Marine Facility in Point Loma, the home of Scripps Ship Operations and Marine Technical Support. More than five years in the works, the revitalized facility includes $20.9 million worth of improvements, including a new pier, new wharf, improved berthing, upgraded utilities, and environmental protection systems.
“The Nimitz Marine Facility is now well positioned to serve as America’s finest oceanographic support center for the next half-century and beyond,” said Bruce Appelgate, head of Scripps Ship Operations and Marine Technical Support.
The Nimitz Marine Facility on San Diego Bay has served as the home port and operations base for the Scripps academic research fleet for more than 50 years. It is home to research vessels Roger Revelle, Robert Gordon Sproul, and research platform FLIP, the facility serves as a coordination center for research operations around the world’s oceans as part of Scripps/UC San Diego’s ongoing effort to understand and protect the planet.
Later this year the facility will welcome the arrival of R/V Sally Ride, America’s newest research vessel, named for the former UC San Diego professor by the ship’s owner, the U.S. Office of Naval Research.
San Diego to Sell Dilapidated
Former AIDS Hospice in Bankers Hill
By City News Service
The City Council unanimously voted Tuesday to put a dilapidated former AIDS hospice named for a hero of San Diego’s gay and lesbian community up for sale, but reserved the right to approval of a final deal.
The caveat was designed to address concerns over the eventual fate of the Truax House, at Laurel and Union streets in Bankers Hill. The home was named for Brad Truax, a doctor who spread awareness of AIDS in the 1980s. He died of the disease in 1988.
“The Truax House is sacred ground to many of us,” said local LGBT community leader Nicole Murray Ramirez.
The ex-hospice is one of a pair of aging structures on about two-thirds of an acre. The property was appraised at $2.4 million, but will require about $1.8 million in repairs to be made livable, according to city staff.
Councilman Todd Gloria, who is gay and represents the area, said he hopes an eventual purchaser will restore the house and make it available as a public meeting space.
Proceeds from the sale are required to go into the city’s Gas Tax fund, because of the manner in which the land was acquired 56 years ago.
However, a similar amount of money from the city’s general fund could be used to create an AIDS memorial and nearby park projects, according to the mayor’s office. A nonprofit group formed last year is raising funds for such a memorial.
Real estate assets Director Cybele Thompson said it will take about a month before the city’s real estate brokers are ready to market the property. She said she could come back to the City Council with a prospective deal by the end of this year.
To Honor UCSD Senior
By City News Service
A UC San Diego senior who is helping the school address sexual assault issues will be honored as a “Champion of Change” by the Obama administration on Thursday, the White House announced Tuesday.
Meghan Yap, of La Jolla, is developing sexual violence policy and best practice recommendations for the university, as an intern at the UCSD Medical School Center on Gender Equity and Health, according to the White House.
Yap has been reviewing recommendations from state and national coalitions against sexual assault and analyzing campus policies to assess their adherence to those approaches. She also advocates for greater sensitivity and to prevent re-victimization of survivors.
According to the White House, her first exposure to sexual violence came while working as an emergency medical technician in Los Angeles, and she made it her mission to combat the problem when she experienced sexual assault on campus.
The first-generation college student plans to graduate in June and pursue a master’s degree in public health and a doctorate in global health.
Yap and nine others will be honored at a White House event that will feature remarks by Vice President Joe Biden and Tina Tchen, executive director of the White House Council on Women and Girls. The program will also feature actor Matt McGorry.