Daily Business Report-Dec. 6 2017
A rendering of SoccerCity San Diego (Rendering courtesy of FS Investors via Voice of San Diego)
SoccerCity Analysis is Bad News for the
Project — and the City’s Climate Goals
By Andrew Keatts |Voice of San Diego
SoccerCity would generage more traffic than its developers promised, according to a study released last week. That’s bad news for the project’s political hopes, but might be even worse news for the city’s climate goals.
If it is correct, it casts doubt on whether the city of San Diego can ever hit its ambitious goals to increase the share of people who commute without cars. The analysis from the San Diego Association of Governments projects SoccerCity will fall far short of the city’s goals to spur transit use and to persuade commuters to walk or bike to work.
The city’s big idea is to nudge residents out of their cars and into trolleys, buses, bikes or sidewalks by building urban neighborhoods near jobs and transit stations. The idea is the backbone of the city’s plan for long-term growth and its Climate Action Plan.
SoccerCity proposes just that sort of dense mix of housing, office and retail space on a major trolley stop in the middle of the city.
If a dense proposal on a trolley stop in the middle of the city can’t even come close to hitting the city’s goals for how its residents will move around, what can?
For their part, SoccerCity investors say the study is flawed. SANDAG leaders say they are not in the business of evaluating projects and their compliance with the city’s climate goals, and it’s possible another project on the site with a different makeup would score better.
But the study raised alarm from environmentalists and other advocates of the city’s climate plan. Either SANDAG is standing in the way of the kind of growth they want to see, they said, or the agency is raising a red flag on a severe problem in the assumptions underlying the city’s hopes.
City voters next year will decide the fate of SoccerCity, a proposal by private equity group FS Investors to build some 4,800 homes and office and retail space, along with a river park and new pro soccer stadium on the San Diego County Credit Union Stadium site.
SANDAG last week announced SoccerCity will generate 97,000 car trips to or from the site on an average day, roughly 25 percent more than the developer’s estimate of 71,500 trips.
More consequential to San Diego’s goals adopted two years ago in its Climate Action Plan is how few people the analysis claims will get around by anything other than a car.
Just under 17 percent of people commuting to or from SoccerCity are going to take transit, walk or ride a bike, according to SANDAG’s analysis.
The city, though, expects 50 percent of people living within a half-mile of a transit stop to commute by transit, walking or biking by 2035. It’s part of the legally binding Climate Action Plan.
It raises difficult questions for local decision-makers. One is whether they can trust SANDAG’s analysis. If the answer is yes, then they may have to reconsider just how achievable the city’s transportation goals really are.
SANDAG stands by its analysis – and says it can simultaneously be right, and that it’s still possible for the city to make good on its climate plan.
Mayor Kevin Faulconer, who championed the climate plan, is responsible for ensuring city staff measures its progress, and who supports SoccerCity, declined to comment on what SANDAG’s analysis of the project said about the climate plan’s viability.
Special Needs Adult Housing Project
Scheduled to Break Ground in Poway
Villa de Vida, an approved 54-unit residential project for adults with developmental disabilities, is scheduled to break ground midyear in Poway, and targeted to be completed as early as winter of 2019.
With a majority of special needs adults currently under the care of aging parents, Villa de Vida was founded in response to the growing demand for permanent supportive housing. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates 1 in 68 children in the U.S. are diagnosed with autism.
It is estimated that 71.5 percent of people with developmental disabilities currently receive residential care from family caregivers, of whom some 25 percent are over age 60, according to the Center for Healthcare Strategies Report.
Air Force Selects Air Base as Preferred Site
for Hosting General Atomics-Built Drones
The United States Air Force has chosen Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida as the preferred location for hosting a new MQ-9 Reaper Wing with 24 remotely piloted aircraft (RPA). The Reaper is manufactured by General Atomics in San Diego.
The wing will feature an operations group with mission control elements, a launch and recovery capability, and a maintenance group.
“We selected Tyndall Air Force Base because it was the best location to meet the unique requirements of the MQ-9 Reaper,” said Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson.
Those requirements, according to Wilson, include fewer aircraft competing for air space, nearby training ranges, lower up-front costs and great weather.
Based on current projections, Airmen are expected to begin arriving at the new location as early as 2020, with the first aircraft expected to arrive in 2022.
SDSU and MPI Partner to Develop Meeting
and Event Management Graduate Degree
Meeting Professionals International and the L. Robert Payne School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at San Diego State University announced they will collaborate to create the first graduate-level degree program offered in the United States focused on meeting and event management for mid- and senior-level professionals. In addition, they plan to develop a related academic certificate program for non-traditional students.
Scheduled to launch in 2019, the master’s degree program will incorporate experiential learning, simulations, and industry partner mentoring, and will be delivered online with meet-ups on the SDSU campus to accommodate work schedules of students. It will be taught by faculty who have worked in the meeting and event industry, and feature guest lecturers from the industry as well. After successful completion of the program, students will be awarded a master of science degree in meeting and event management from SDSU.
Medical Marijuana Records Largest
Spike in Revenues in November
Medical Marijuana Inc., the first publicly traded cannabis company in the United States, generated the largest-ever revenue month in its history in November, the San Diego company reported.
“We have experienced tremendous growth this year and breaking our sales record in November (pre-audit numbers) yet again only further illustrates the positive trajectory of the company’s overall sales,” said Medical Marijuana CEO Dr. Stuart Titus. “I am confident that we are on track for our best ever revenue-producing year and good momentum to carry forward into 2018.”
The Company recently announced 2017 third-quarter financial results showing a gross revenue increase of over 200% with November 2017 being the third time the Company has broken their monthly sales record just this year.
“The recent growth experienced by the portfolio of companies is so exciting and beyond expectations,” said Medical Marijuana, Inc. Chief Operating Officer, Blake Schroeder. “Revenue has grown multiple times over the past 18 months with no signs of slowing down anytime soon.”
Michael Neil Joins Kidder Mathews
Michael Neil has joined Kidder Mathews’ San Diego office as a first vice president where he will focus on the sale and leasing of office properties.
Neil has been in the commercial real estate industry for over 18 years. Prior to joining Kidder Mathews, he was with Coldwell Banker Commercial in Glendale, Calif., where he was a top 10 producer.