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Major Projects and Programs

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Redevelopment Agency of the City of San Diego (Agency) is dissolved as of February 1, 2012, per Assembly Bill 1X 26 (AB 26). The City of San Diego, serving as the successor agency per Resolution No. R-307238 (PDF) (January 12, 2012), has assumed the former Agency's assets, rights, and obligations under the California Community Redevelopment Law, subject to some limitations, and is winding down the former Agency's affairs and taking other actions in accordance with the dissolution provisions in Part 1.85 of AB 26. For questions regarding either the enforceable/recognized obligations of the former Agency or the Oversight Board, contact the Office of the Mayor at (619) 236-6330 or successorinfo@sandiego.gov. This website remains intact for historical reference purposes.

Major Catalytic Projects

The Redevelopment Agency actively supports major projects that make sizable improvements to the community and serve as catalysts for attracting additional investment and pride into the Project Areas. Below are examples of some of the major catalytic projects that the Agency has been engaged in over the years.

City Heights Urban Village

The award-winning City Heights Urban Village has re-created the core of the City Heights community, establishing a pedestrian-friendly town square with important City facilities and centers of learning. The project resulted from an unprecedented collaboration among the City of San Diego, CityLink Investment Corporation, and Price Charities, as well as several other public and private entities. The Urban Village covers 10 city blocks within the City Heights Redevelopment Project Area and includes: a police substation, a community gymnasium, an elementary school, a library, a community service center, a recreation center, a continuing education center, a retail center, affordable townhomes, and an office center.

City Heights Square

This master-planned redevelopment project located on University Avenue bounded by 43rd Street, Fairmount Avenue, and Polk Avenue, is comprised of four distinct but complementary elements. Combined, the development represents an investment of more than $75 million to further revitalize the City Heights Redevelopment Project Area and bring needed resources to it. The redevelopment project is also considered a complementary phase to the award-winning City Heights Urban Village. Project elements include:

  • Senior Housing
    This project consists of 151 units of affordable, supportive housing for low- and very low-income seniors. Residents have access to onsite support servies, including access to daily meals. The Redevelopment Agency contributed a total of $9.1 million to the project. The City Heights Square Senior Housing project held its grand opening in August 2007.
  • La Maestra Community Health Centers
    This project includes a new three-story medical office building with underground parking, a community clinic, and private commercial space. Construction was completed in summer 2010.
  • Commercial/Residential
    The commercial/residential portion of City Heights Square occupies an approximately 61,922-square-foot site on University Avenue between 43rd Street and Fairmount Avenue. Price Charities constructed the mixed-use project with 92 residential apartment units, 20,500 square feet of retail space, two levels of subterranean parking, and 54 covered surface-level spaces. The estimated total project cost is approximately $38 million. Construction was completed in November 2011.
  • Pocket Park
    The Redevelopment Agency has funded land acquisition and improvements for a 5,348-square-foot pocket park (PDF) in the City Heights Square block. The design phase for the park is currently underway.

International Gateway of the Americas/Las Américas

The International Gateway of the Americas, or Las Américas, is a mixed-use entertainment and cultural village along the American side of the United States–Mexico border that has dramatically revitalized the San Ysidro community and border crossing. Once fully completed, the International Gateway of the Americas would create a world-class gateway between the cities of San Diego and Tijuana. The project plans include new customs facilities, a pedestrian bridge, retail stores, offices, hotel and entertainment areas, and housing in the San Ysidro Redevelopment Project Area. The retail component of the project, which boasts 100 outlet shops and public amenities, is nearly 560,000 square feet. The public/private partnership necessitates the collaboration of local, state, and federal governments from both sides of the border.

North Park Theatre

A cornerstone of the community since 1928, the North Park Theatre has been rehabilitated to once again become a live performance venue. The renovation included interior restoration and expansion, retail and office space, a new theatre entrance and marquee. The project also features a 388-space public parking structure to support traffic to the theatre and surrounding North Park business corridor. Located in the North Park Redevelopment Project Area, the theatre opened in fall 2005, and the parking structure was completed in February 2006.

Naval Training Center (Liberty Station)

The redevelopment of the former Naval Training Center has become a model for addressing areas affected by military base closings. The 328-acre mixed-use redevelopment project has transformed the former base into a vibrant community featuring residential neighborhoods, a 46-acre waterfront park, shops and restaurants, museums and galleries, a nine-hole golf course, a business center, hotels, state-of-the-art schools and a 16-acre outdoor promenade. The project is a partnership between the City of San Diego, the Redevelopment Agency, Corky McMillin Companies, and the Naval Training Center Foundation.

Mercado del Barrio

The Redevelopment Agency has partnered with a private developer to construct the Mercado del Barrio project. As the centerpiece of the Barrio Logan Redevelopment Project Area, this project will transform two vacant city blocks adjacent to Chicano Park and the San Diego–Coronado Bay Bridge with: affordable housing; commercial space for general retail, service, and restaurant uses; public art and gathering areas; and infrastructure improvements. The project will highlight the culture of Barrio Logan and meet or exceed the United States Green Building Council's requirements for LEED certification. Construction began in March 2011 and will be completed by the end of 2012.

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Major Programs

Along with supporting major development projects, the Redevelopment Agency implements several programs across multiple Project Areas to address blight in residential neighborhoods and commercial corridors and to improve community health, safety, and stability. Below are brief descriptions of the Agency's programs and links to more information.

Affordable Housing Collaborative Program

The Redevelopment Agency participates in the Comprehensive Affordable Housing Strategy Collaborative, which consists of the Redevelopment Agency (i.e., the City's Redevelopment Department, Centre City Development Corporation, and Southeastern Economic Development Corporation) and the San Diego Housing Commission. Logos of Affordable Housing Collaborative Members The Collaborative was formed to coordinate the best use of the member organizations' combined resources dedicated to housing and creates a forum for viewing housing projects and programs holistically City-wide and for sharing the resources and expertise of the four organizations. Each member organization of the Collaborative has a seat on the Executive Loan Committee, which reviews all Agency subsidy recommendations for projects using Affordable Housing Opportunity Funds before they are presented to the Agency Board for approval.

Photo of Tools

Housing Enhancement Loan Programs (HELP)

The Housing Enhancement Loan Programs (HELP) were created to increase, improve, and preserve the supply of housing occupied by persons and families of low and moderate income. HELP provides forgivable loans to assist residents renovate the homes that they own.

First-Time Homebuyer Assistance Program

Photo of Homebuyers

Increased homeowner occupancy has been identified as an important factor for achieving the redevelopment objectives of improving neighborhood stability, encouraging private investment, and improving the local housing stock. Accordingly, the Redevelopment Agency created the Home in the Heights Homebuyer Assistance Program in the City Heights community. The goal of the program is to make first-time homeownership more accessible and affordable to persons seeking to reside within City Heights by making available subordinate loans (i.e., silent second mortgage loans).

Public Improvements Program

Photo of University Avenue Streetlight

The Redevelopment Agency coordinates with the City of San Diego and its process to fund the design and installation of public improvements, such as streetlights, sidewalks, traffic signals, and street medians and landscaping along several vital right-of-ways in various Project Areas. These improvements create safe and walkable environments for residents, visitors, and merchants and help generate economic vitality and remove blight from critical commercial/transit corridors and residential neighborhoods. Public improvements may be implemented as stand-alone projects or in conjunction with major development projects supported by the Agency.

Storefront Improvement Program

The Storefront Improvement Program for Redevelopment Project Areas encourages property owners and/or tenants through financial and design/architectural assistance to improve the façades of their ground-floor businesses. Storefront improvements create a positive visual impact that helps eliminate blight, stimulate private investment, and increase business activity.

Community Enhancement Program

The Community Enhancement Program was created to improve communities by enhancing the local housing stock and beautifying public right-of-ways. The program addresses interior and exterior home improvements for qualified properties and residents and improves the community through graffiti abatement, canyon restoration, and beautification of public right-of-ways. The program is currently being implemented in the City Heights, Barrio Logan, and San Ysidro Redevelopment Project Areas.

Enhanced Code Enforcement Program

Photo of Hardhat for Inspections

The Redevelopment Agency has Memoranda of Understanding with the City of San Diego's Neighborhood Code Compliance Division to conduct enhanced code enforcement efforts in the City Heights and Crossroads Redevelopment Project Areas. Efforts primarily focus on, but are not limited to, addressing minor and complicated building code violations, proactively targeting issues related to vacant and foreclosed properties, and monitoring multi-family housing and retail/commercial areas for violations related to parking lots and tenant improvements. Addressing code violations helps eliminate blight, discourages illegal activity, and encourages continued maintenance of properties and neighborhoods.

Focused Graffiti Removal Services

Report Graffiti Online!

The Redevelopment Agency has a Memorandum of Understanding with the City of San Diego's Neighborhood Code Compliance Division to provide focused graffiti abatement services within the Agency's 14 Project Areas. Rapid removal of graffiti contributes to eliminating blight and discouraging graffiti activity itself. To report graffiti for removal, contact the City of San Diego online or by calling (800) 829-6884. Be sure to leave a specific address and/or location details (with cross streets), and the City of San Diego or its contractor will remove the graffiti within 48 hours.

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Project Area Summary Videos

Video Camera The Redevelopment Agency has produced videos summarizing the projects and programs within the following six Project Areas as of July 2010. Click on the links below to view the videos:

Additional Information

For additional information on the Redevelopment Agency's projects and programs, call (619) 236-6700 or visit the following sites:




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