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SD Opera moves to Centre City Building

The San Diego Opera is moving its administrative offices from the Civic Center Plaza building at 1200 Third Ave. to the Centre City Building at 233 A St. in downtown San Diego, effective July 18.

The opera company also announced its ticket office will be located on the floor of the building at the slightly different address of 237 A St. The company's costume shop will also be located on the sixth floor of the Centre City Building.

The company's new offices will take up the entire 7,000-square-foot, fifth floor of the Centre City Building, which is less than half the 15,000 square feet the opera occupied on Third Avenue.

The opera's phone, email system and website will be down for a few hours on July 18 while the company's servers are relocated.

The Centre City Building is managed and owned by entities associated with Lamden Property Management Inc., which assisted with the office build-out

The Irving Group assisted the opera in its space search and was consulted in the establishment of a lease. The three-year lease granted by Dr. William and Evelyn Lamden and Randolph and Dr. Carol Lamden Corby translates into a $300,000 gift to the company. All told, the move is projected to save about $400,000 per year in rent.

Gorilla Movers provided discounted services as well.

Earlier the opera reduced its staff positions by 13, as well as other measures projected to allow the company to reduce its budget from $17 million to $11 million annually.

The 14-story high-rise commercial building with its gabled rooftop and styled rosette windows was built in 1927. The Centre City Building is designated by the city of San Diego as a historical landmark, but a CoStar Group survey conducted within the past month has found that the building is difficult to lease. Currently, just prior to the opera's arrival, the101,344-square-foot building was just 43.7 percent occupied, according to CoStar.

The opera announced its 2015 and 50th season anniversary on May 19 after two months of uncertainty as to whether the company would survive at all.

"During this time, the company launched a crowdfunding campaign that resulted in an unprecedented $2.2 million in public donations, of which 48 percent were first-time donors from six countries and 36 states," the opera said in a press release.

In May following that vote of confidence, the company appointed former Lyric Opera of Chicago General Director, William Mason, as artistic adviser and has since begun a search for permanent leadership.

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