June 30, 2022

SDSU Considering Layout Change for Mission Valley Campus

San Diego State University is looking to save hundreds of millions of dollars in development costs associated with the office portion of its planned Mission Valley campus.

The school, through a formal solicitation process, is currently seeking an architectural firm to come up with alternative designs for what is known as the “Innovation District”, or area. of the 135-acre site reserved for offices, research and educational uses. Bidders are urged to reconfigure the layout of 13 buildings and 5,000 parking spaces located south of the current Aztec stadium, as the institution believes the buildings no longer require a parking platform to take them out of the floodplain. of the site.

The fundamental change would allow every room in the neighborhood to be built independently of each other, saving up to $ 200 million in parking development costs alone.

“We are evaluating the layout of this specific area to increase the phase capacity of the parking structure and buildings,” said Gina Jacobs, an executive of SDSU’s Mission Valley development team. “In our initial plans, the two-level parking lot was going to be needed to raise the site further from the floodplain. As we continued with our design and planning, our engineers identified a way to avoid relying on the parking lot to climb out of the floodplain.

In August, the State of San Diego took over the former Mission Valley Stadium site in the city of San Diego, along Friars Road, to build a new stadium and satellite campus.

The university is currently demolishing the old stadium while simultaneously working on a site with a capacity of 35,000 people that it hopes to complete in time for the 2022 football season. 4,600 residential units are also planned, 80 acres of parks and open spaces, 1.6 million square feet of office and research space, 400 hotel rooms and 95,000 square feet of on-campus shopping. The project, known as SDSU Mission Valley, is expected to be completed in 10 to 15 years at a total cost of $ 3.5 billion.

The SDSU Mission Valley site map. The school plans to change the layout of the parking lots and buildings (A1, A2, A3, A4, B1, B2, C1, C2, C3, D1, D2, D3, D4) in the innovation district section of the south of the stadium.

(Courtesy of San Diego State University)

The school’s Mission Valley master plan has gone through a state-mandated environmental review process; it was approved by the board of trustees of California State University in January 2020. A year later, the institution takes another look at the so-called Innovation District where 13 of the 15 apartment buildings planned offices were to be built on top of a two-story building. , 5,000-space parking structure.

The rationale for SDSU is that the project will be more attractive to future university partners, who will absorb the cost of parking, if buildings and parking spaces can be constructed in phases.

“Our public-private partners in the innovation district will be responsible for financially supporting the construction of the parking lot that will serve the buildings they construct and occupy on the site. Each partner will be responsible for contributing to the construction of a shared parking lot for the innovation district or for directly building a parking lot, ”said Jacobs. “This potential change in the layout will make innovation district projects more attractive to potential (partners), because podium parking as initially envisioned has a higher cost than stand-alone structured parking.”

The construction costs of car parks vary considerably depending on whether the spaces are structured or unstructured, above ground or underground. Typically, developers spend $ 18,000 to $ 24,000 per space for above ground parking, and prices can climb to $ 40,000 to $ 60,000 per space for underground parking, said Nathan Moeder, chief analyst. real estate London Moeder Advisors.

“It’s too expensive to build 5,000 places (all at once). It’s an upfront cost and then you have to wait years to generate income to make up for it, ”he said.

In a set of slides shared with potential bidders, SDSU estimates that a 4,700-space parking lot built according to its current plan would cost $ 244 million, or $ 52,000 per space. An alternative 5,000 booth structure that does not support office buildings would cost $ 48 million, or $ 9,600 per booth, according to the presentation.

SDSU does not expect a layout change to trigger an additional environmental review. The project’s density and parking ratios will remain the same, as will the construction area, which means no new environmental impacts are expected, Jacobs said.

The State of San Diego has closed the initial request for qualifications, entitled “Site Planning Services at Mission Valley SDSU CampusThe school plans to issue a follow-up request for proposals to shortlisted companies in March and select a winner in April. Vertical construction, as opposed to preparatory work, in the innovation district is expected to begin in 2023 , although the school did not indicate whether it found office partners or tenants.

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