Converging local university institutions and the commercial real estate industry, NAIOP San Diego’s fourth annual University Challenge Friday showcased the best conceptual commercial development plans from student teams at University of California San Diego Department of Urban Studies & Planning, San Diego State University Corky McMillin Center for Real Estate and University of San Diego Burnham Moores Center for Real Estate.
At the presentations portion of the challenge event, held at Marriott San Diego Del Mar, the seven-member judging panel of commercial real estate experts crowned the team from SDSU victors for their project entitled The Flats Point Loma.
Winning team members Jared Anderson, Ian Bradley, Carolina Conway, Austin Harrison, Kelli Knapp and Bharat Madan proposed to transform the USPS Midway Post Office into a mixed-use project made up of apartments, rentable creative office space and site-serving retail.
In a creative twist, the team also suggested repurposing shipping containers to boost marketability and sustainability of the project, while also reducing construction time and cost.
The judges, Paul Twardowski from Hines, Michael Kazemzadeh from City National Bank, Dennis Cruzan from Cruzan, Lauree Sahba from San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, Matt Lituchy from Jay Paul, John Garrigan from LBA Realty and Jim Nigro from US Bank Commercial Real Estate were not unanimous. They cited the high quality of each proposed project in explaining the challenge they had in selecting the winner.
“The students were challenged to find the best use of the land, keeping in mind the guidelines and zoning regulations of the proposed Midway Community Plan, to create an office, industrial or mixed-use development,” said Karen Burges, executive director of NAIOP San Diego.
“We are blown away year after year by the talent emerging from the real estate programs at our local universities.”
With today’s win, SDSU reclaims the title from UCSD, which boasted the top team in 2013. SDSU teams won each of the two previous years.
NAIOP San Diego is a chapter of the national Commercial Real Estate Development Association and it comprises more than 500 members serving the local San Diego market. NAIOP is the leading organization for developers, owners and related professionals in office, industrial and mixed use/retail real estate, with 18,000 members in North America.
NAIOP advances responsible commercial real estate development and advocates for effective public policy. For more information, visit naiopsd.org.