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Millenia, Civita continue to evolve with new projects

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An architect’s rendering shows an aerial view of Millenia, a 210-acre master planned community in Chula Vista. Images courtesy of Metz Public Relations

The Corky McMillin Cos.' Millenia development in Chula Vista and Sudberry Properties' Civita project in Mission Valley are changing the landscape.

Groundbreaking was held last fall for the 210-acre Millenia master-planned development in eastern Chula Vista, and the project continues to become more defined each day.

Plans for the 80-square-block development call for 3,000 multifamily residential units, 2 million square feet of Class A office space, 1.5 million square feet of retail space, a hotel, civic and multiuse projects, an elementary school, joint middle and high school, six parks, promenades, plazas, bikeways and trails.

Millenia is east of the state Route 125 toll road and just south of Otay Ranch Town Center.

Todd Galarneau, Corky McMillin Cos.' senior vice president of land development, said that while Millenia is close to Otay Ranch, it is going to be a markedly different project.

Galarneau said the component that will serve as a catalyst for the rest will be the Class A office space.

"We have large parcels for campus-style development. Such properties are hard to find," Galarneau said.

Galarneau said a 10-acre office pad will be graded that should accommodate 150,000 to 200,000 square feet of Class A development in a first phase.

"We are talking to tenants. The key is finding a user," Galarneau said.

Although some companies with industrial space demands have shied away from Otay Mesa, Galarneau said, he likes the prospects for Class A office development in eastern Chula Vista.

"We've got a toll road, the proximity to the border, and maquiladoras are booming right now," Galarneau said.

Millenia's first residential phase, which started with the grading of 100 acres last fall, will consist of a 270-unit apartment complex by Fairfield Residential; 217 condominiums and townhomes by McMillin; associated residential common areas such as playgrounds and pools; a 120-room hotel; two urban parks and a retail center to be developed by Sudberry Properties.

Galarneau said the 217 multifamily units have been called the Genesis developments. These have been divided into three projects: Metro, Evo and Trio. People are expected to begin moving into the new units in late 2014 or early 2015.

Colton Sudberry, Sudberry president and CEO whose firm is handling the retail portions of Millenia, explained that the first 150,000-square-foot initial phase of the retail component of the Millenia plan will be developed in a town center style.

"This will be the front door to the project," Sudberry said.

While Sudberry works on retail within Millenia, it continues to perfect its 230-acre Civita master plan on Mission Valley's northern edge.

Civita calls for 4,780 residential homes and apartments, approximately 480,000 square feet for a lifestyle retail center and 420,000 square feet for an office/business campus over the next 10 to 15 years

Having completed its 306-unit Circa 37 in 2013, Sudberry broke ground for its 612-unit West Park midrise apartment complex last fall. The first units are scheduled to begin phasing in next summer. Build-out is expected in about two years.

A rendering of West Park, a new apartment community in Civita in Mission Valley that is under construction. Move-ins are scheduled for this fall.

West Park takes its name from its own half-acre park and array of recreational facilities, including three landscaped pool areas; rooftop lounges with TVs, barbecues and fireplaces; and a half-mile jogging loop with exercise stations.

Along with a 10,000-square-foot resident gym, West Park will be very energy conscious with such features a photovoltaic solar array to power common area electricity consumption, and six on-site fuel cells that will generate clean energy back to the grid, while providing heat for one of the swimming pools.

West Park is also planned to feature electric-vehicle charging stations and the community’s fleet of Car2Go ride-sharing cars.

Construction and permanent financing for West Park was arranged by HFF (Holliday Fenoglio Fowler L.P.).

In November, all 15 units released at Shea Homes' 64-townhome Frame & Focus development in Civita were committed in the first weekend they were offered.

Shea is also the developer of the 73-unit Skyloft and the 127-unit Social Garden development in Civita.

Another residential project within Civita is Tri Pointe Homes’ 45-unit Altana, the first single-family detached residential neighborhood in the master plan that also continues to sell out its phases.

Sudberry said the 480,000-square-foot retail component within Civita may be built in phases or all at once. He is holding discussions with some big-box tenants that may result in Civita's entire retail component being built at the same time.

The timing for the 420,000 square feet of office use on a 15-acre southern part of Civita is a long-term proposition.

"Vulcan Materials has a ground lease on that property that has about eight years remaining," Sudberry said.

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