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Daily Business Report-Jan. 12, 2018

Daily Business Report-Jan. 12, 2018

The San Diego Symphony proposes to construct a permanent outdoor performance and event venue in Embarcadero Marina Park South. (Conceptual rendering provided by Tucker Sadler.)

Port of San Diego Moves Ahead on Bayside

Performance Park Enhancement

Project Proposed by San Diego Symphony

The Port of San Diego Board of Port Commissioners has voted to advance the San Diego Symphony’s Bayside Performance Park Enhancement Project, proposed for the Port’s Embarcadero Marina Park South.
At its Jan. 9 meeting, the board approved several items to advance the proposed project, including certification of the Final Environmental Impact Report, approval of a Port Master Plan Amendment (PMPA), and approval of a binding Letter of Intent (LOI) with the San Diego Symphony (Symphony).
The Symphony proposes to construct a permanent outdoor performance and event venue in Embarcadero Marina Park South where the nonprofit organization has operated a Bayside Summer Nights (formerly Summer Pops) concert series since 2004. Each year in the park, the Symphony assembles and disassembles a music festival-style stage, bleachers, seating, ticketing booths, concession stands, food stands, portable bathrooms, a chain-link fence and other items for the summer season.
The proposed Bayside Performance Park would allow the Symphony to offer a limited number of performances and events year-round by replacing the temporary performance and event venue with a permanent stage and acoustic shell; audience seating would still be provided with temporary chairs set up as needed, based on the size of the event. In addition, the Symphony would improve the park at no public cost with new, permanent upscale public restrooms; extensive public park enhancements throughout the park; a wider promenade around the performance area; a new bay viewing deck available for public use during non-event hours; and other public amenities.

“The San Diego Symphony has a great track record with the Port and is a pillar of the San Diego arts community,” said board chairman Rafael Castellanos. “Their proposal to invest $45 million in improvements, including many public amenities and better performance facilities, strikes a new and wonderful chord on our dynamic waterfront, honors the water and creates a dynamic new place on our beautiful San Diego Bay for the public to enjoy.”


Rendering of the North Park small-format Target store.

Rendering of the North Park small-format Target store.

Target to Open Store in North Park

Project is part of retailer’s plans to operate 130 small-format stores by the end of 2019 across the country

Target has announced plans to open a small-format store in North Park in November, apparently believing that what worked well in South Park will work again in this community.

The store will be located at 3029 University Ave., in the building previously occupied by Wangs restaurant. It will be Target’s second small-format store in the area, joining the existing South Park location, the Target Express, which opened in October 2015.

“Target’s newest San Diego small-format store in the North Park community will be customized to fit the unique character of the neighborhood and meet the needs of neighbors and visitors alike,” said Mark Schindele, a Target senior vice president. Target has met with Councilman Chris Ward, leaders from the North Park Mainstreet Association, the North Park Planning Committee, the North Community Association and the North Park Historical Society and will continue to partner with local leaders to ensure the spirit of this community is reflected throughout the store assortment and design,” said Schindele.

Target encountered opposition from some South Park residents before it opened the Target Express, claiming it would ruin the character of the neighborhood. The corporation took suggestions from the community.

The North Park Target will be about 35,200 square feet and will employ 50 workers.

The store will offer: a broad beauty assortment presented in a boutique-style setting; baby and kids assortment, including basics, apparel, toys and sporting goods; men’s and women’s basics, apparel and accessories; a

grocery selection for the fill-in trip, including fresh produce, grab-and-go items, snacks and meal solutions.

Services will include Order Pickup and CVS pharmacy, plus free guest parking in lots and public parking at low hourly rates.

The retailer is on track to operate 130 small-format stores by the end of 2019, serving new guests in communities and neighborhoods where a traditional-sized Target store may not fit.


File photo from 2017 Photo 360 event at San Diego City College which drew 180 San Diego Unified students. Each participant will receive a DSLR camera for the day.

File photo from 2017 Photo 360 event at San Diego City College which drew 180 San Diego Unified students. Each participant will receive a DSLR camera for the day.

High School Students Focus on Photography

Careers at City College Photo 360 Event

San Diego City College’s Photography Department will host approximately 250 local high school students Wednesday, Jan. 17, at its second annual Photo 360 event, an event aimed at providing exposure to the department’s offerings and photography careers.

Students will attend workshops, learn more about City College’s photography program, and hear from speakers who work in the profession. Some 180 San Diego Unified School District students took part in last year’s inaugural Photo 360. This year’s event will also include students from the Poway and San Dieguito Union school districts.

Every high school student will have a DSLR digital camera and will rotate through five professional photo studio workshops during the day. Students will have the opportunity to photograph various people and objects including professional fashion models. In addition, students will be exposed to a variety of current photographic techniques as well as traditional film and darkroom processing methods.

Students were selected to take part in the event by instructors at the San Diego Unified School District’s College, Career & Technical Education program. The CTE program embodies the strong collaboration between the San Diego Community College District and San Diego Unified.

(More information can be obtained by contacting professor David Eichinger at or George Tubon at (619) 388-3281.)


Affordable Housing Projects in the Works:

Normal Heights: A bulldozer and excavator began the process of transforming a vacant lot into 52 new permanent supportive housing units for homeless Veterans Thursday morning as The Lofts at Normal Heights, a San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) partnership development, celebrated its groundbreaking. The rental apartments will remain affordable for 55 years for tenants with income up to 50 percent of San Diego’s Area Median Income, currently $31,850 a year for an individual.

Chelsea Investment Corporation is developing The Lofts at Normal Heights in partnership with SDHC. “As a military veteran myself, I appreciate the team that made this possible,” said Bob Cummings, the project manager with Chelsea Investment Corporation.

Tenants will receive essential supportive services through Alpha Project.

Through SDHC’s homelessness action plan, Housing First — San Diego, the agency awarded a $5.2 million loan toward the development of The Lofts at Normal Heights: $3 million in HOME Investment Partnerships Program funds, awarded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to the city of San Diego and administered by SDHC; and

$2.2 million from the city’s Affordable Housing Fund, also administered by SDHC. Union Bank contributed a $13.5 million construction loan toward the development.

The estimated rents for the studio and one-bedroom units at The Lofts at Normal Heights range from $446 to $796 per month.

East Village — Affirmed Housing, a San Diego-based affordable housing development company, has acquired an 11,479-square foot parcel in Downtown San Diego’s East Village for $3.4 million. The seller was a private family trust.

Affirmed Housing plans to pursue redevelopment of the parcel into an affordable housing project. The parcel is located at 701-723 17th St.

Colliers International represented the seller in the transaction.


A Laptop with Three Days of Battery Life

San Diego-based Qualcomm – the world’s largest smartphone chip maker — is largely spearheading this emerging category. Along with multi-day battery performance, thesealways-on PC’s take advantage of ubiquitous cellular connectivity.

Read more…


MiraCosta College Named

‘Military Friendly Institution’

For the second year in a row, MiraCosta College in Oceanside has been designated a “Military Friendly Institution” by Victory Media, a veteran-owned company that publishes GI Jobs magazine and other publications related to veterans and their transition into civilian careers. MiraCosta is recognized by the company for consistently being on the front lines of serving those who have served

With over 3,000 active-duty military, military dependents and military veterans enrolled at its campuses, MiraCosta has been expanding its already expansive outreach efforts to current and former members of the armed forces, college officials said. And while many community colleges focus on building the vocational skills of returning servicemen and servicewomen, MiraCosta College is also helping veterans transfer to four-year colleges and universities.


Tree planting

Tree planting

County Supervisors Approve

$2 Million Tree Planting Program

The Board of Supervisors Wednesday approved a $2 million expansion of a program to remove and replace weakened trees in county parks. The action authorizes the Department of Parks and Recreation to advertise and award the contract for its Comprehensive Tree Program. The allocation includes the purchase of 3,500 trees of various species and sizes, along with other materials and services associated with the planting of new trees, and removal of dead or diseased trees.

Trees will be planted at parks that have suffered the biggest loss to their tree canopies. Parks set to receive the largest number of trees include Dos Picos County Park in Ramona, San Elijo Lagoon in Cardiff and William Heise County Park in Julian. Many trees have been lost in recent years due to effects of drought, the gold-spotted oak borer and the shot hole borer.

Trees identified for current and future plantings include sycamore, pine, Englemann oak, incense cedar and cottonwood. Planting is expected to begin early spring 2018.


Renowned Scientists Join Rady Children’s

Institute for Genomic Medicine

The Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine announced that six influential life science researchers have been recruited to serve on the Institute’s inaugural Scientific Advisory Board (SAB). “Each of these brilliant scientists is an authority in their respective field,” said Dr. Stephen Kingsmore, president and CEO of the institute. “By sharing their expertise and leadership with us, they will play a vital role in helping to calibrate our goals and oversee our progress in advancing pediatric genomic medicine.”

Read more…


Illumina Vets Back Bitcoin-Like

Genomics Database with $2 Million

Times of San Diego

Veterans of San Diego-based Illumina  are backing an open-source genomics database that uses the same technology employed by Bitcoin.

Luna DNA, a genomics and medical research database using blockchain technology, announced receiving $2 million in seed funding Monday from individual investors and former Illumina executives.

The San Diego-based startup is a public benefit corporation empowering people to own and share their genomic information for medical research. Individuals will be given “Luna Coins” for contributing data. The coins are part of a blockchain and will have real monetary value while preserving privacy.

Read more…


Guild Mortgage Acquiring

Cornerstone Mortgage in St. Louis, Mo.

San Diego-based Guild Mortgage has reached an agreement to acquire Cornerstone Mortgage Inc. of St. Louis, Mo., an independent with 19 offices in three states and loan volume of $1 billion in 2017.

Mary Ann McGarry, president and CEO of Guild, said the acquisition of Cornerstone fits with Guild’s strategic plan to grow in existing markets and also acquire firms with a strong presence in new markets and proven histories of exemplary customer service and entrepreneurial cultures.

Cornerstone has 19 branches and more than 200 employees in Missouri, Illinois and Kansas. The acquisition will give Guild a major presence in Missouri. Cornerstone has been No. 2 in mortgage volume in St. Louis the past three years, according to media surveys. The acquisition is expected to close by March 1, 2018.


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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.

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: