As the Base Realignment and Closure process nears an end and no San Diego facilities will feel the wrath of BRAC, steps needed for the redevelopment of the coveted Broadway Naval Complex are already under way.
Since no San Diego facilities are on the closure list, the upcoming decision by Congress on the BRAC report has little or no effect on the county, which is why the Navy has agreed to consult with the city of San Diego, Port District of San Diego and the Centre City Development Corp. (CCDC) regarding the redevelopment of the 14.72-gross-acre complex.
The BRAC Commission gave its report to President Bush in early September and received approval from the president in mid-September. The report was then sent to Congress, which has 45 legislative days to reject or accept the report in its entirety without the ability to make changes to the final document.
But the 45-day review period for Congress does not apply to the Broadway complex. Instead, under special legislation, the Navy has 30 days from the day of the president's approval to inform Congress that it is implementing legislation to redevelop -- rather than close -- the site, according to Karen Ringel, head of real estate for the Navy.
"It's a bit different than asking for something new. If we don't hear back (from Congress) we can proceed," Ringel said, adding the Navy will inform Congress of implementation in late November or early December.
On Oct. 4, the Navy submitted its request for proposal for the redevelopment of the complex site, according to Ringel. The Navy will receive proposals from developers by January 2006, and negotiate a long-term ground lease with a development team by the January 2007 deadline, which the Navy expects to meet.
Jason Luker, communications specialist with CCDC, said the chances of finding a development team by the deadline are very good because the Navy has taken a proactive approach and will receive proposals from many qualified bidders.
"The Navy is very committed to make this work; we feel it will define the waterfront," Ringel said.
The complex is set to accommodate a minimum of 327,000 gross square feet of government administrative space with parking, support infrastructure and operations and maintenance, according to a CCDC publication. Ringel said the Navy requested between 230,000 and 600,000 square feet of private development. In accordance with the development agreement, the portion not occupied by the Navy would include a mix of commercial office, retail space and hotel units.
"We're leaving it up to the developers to come up with the best plan," Ringel said.
Financing is also being left up to the selected developer.
"It is a world-class waterfront, so financing won't be a problem," Ringel said.
The complex's design, materials and insight planning, besides meeting the Navy's approval, must also be in cooperation with the North Embarcadero Visionary Plan, according Luker.
The plan, which recently received full design approval from the port and CCDC directors, would transform the complex into one part of the $228 million downtown waterfront plan nearly one mile in length and a quarter mile wide that runs from the airport to Seaport Village. Implementation will be segmented into phases, spanning 10 to 15 years. According to the CCDC, the area slated for the plan is one of the last major urban waterfront redevelopment opportunities in North America.
"It is a plan that was implemented in 1992, and it's still relevant from planning and real estate standards," Ringel said. "The plan still fits perfectly into downtown redevelopment."