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Mayor Gloria Taps Community Leaders to Lead Public Dialogue, Help Shape Vision for Civic Center Redevelopment


Thursday, Sept. 15, 2022


SAN DIEGO Mayor Todd Gloria today announced he has selected a panel of civic and Downtown community leaders to develop a vision for the redevelopment of the civic core, which comprises six City-owned blocks in and adjacent to the Civic Center.

Called the Civic Center Revitalization Citizens Committee, the group will help inform the vision for the redevelopment of the Citys central downtown property around City Hall. Following the purchase of the 101 Ash Street and Civic Center Plaza buildings in August as part of a legal settlement, the City now has the opportunity to offer a large, contiguous plot of land for redevelopment under the Surplus Land Act.

Situated directly on a trolley line, the land has enormous potential to address San Diegos affordable housing needs, along with the office space needs of the Citys more than 2,000 Downtown workers and public-serving facilities.

The Civic Center redevelopment is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to redeploy underused land right in the heart of Downtown to address longstanding critical needs of the City and the people we serve, said Mayor Todd Gloria. Its the perfect place for new homes served directly by transit, and its long past time to retire some of our dilapidated City buildings and improve the basic working conditions for our employees. Thinking beyond those needs, the Committee will help engage the public across San Diego to bring a fresh perspective to how we can best deploy these land assets for the greater civic good.

The Civic Center Revitalization Citizens Committees role is to gather public feedback from stakeholders and the broader public to ensure the Mayor, City Councilmembers and bidding teams know San Diegans ideas and priorities for the redevelopment. The committee includes representatives from a broad array of constituencies, including arts and culture, tourism, housing and land use, mobility and transportation, environmental, labor and employees, and the downtown community.

The revitalization of the Civic Core is a once-in-a-generation opportunity that can provide enormous benefits to San Diegans, said Council President Sean Elo-Rivera. Through the redevelopment of several City-owned blocks in downtown, the City can address several long-standing problems, including our severe deficit of affordable homes and the Citys inadequate and outdated office space that fails to meet residents and employees needs. I appreciate the Mayor assembling an experienced group to assist the City with this important opportunity and look forward to the City Council considering the recommendations by the Civic Core Revitalization Citizen's Committee.

Members of the committee must agree in writing that neither they nor their immediate family members or companies will participate in any future bid seeking the award of the redevelopment rights.

We should seize this opportunity to revitalize a key part of downtown while creating affordable housing to address the homelessness crisis, said Councilmember Stephen Whitburn, who represents Downtown. I share the Mayors vision in looking toward the future at what we can accomplish, and I thank these community leaders for serving on this committee and for their commitment to the betterment of our city.

Members of the Civic Center Revitalization Citizens Committee include:

  • Jaymie Bradford, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce (Chair)
  • Bridgette Brashear, former Building Maintenance Supervisor and AFSCME representative
  • Betsy Brennan, President & CEO, Downtown San Diego Partnership
  • Brigette Browning, Secretary-Treasurer San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council
  • Mark Cafferty, President & CEO, San Diego Regional Economic Development Corp.
  • Julie Coker, President & CEO, San Diego Tourism Authority
  • Julie Corrales, Policy Advocate, Environmental Health Coalition and Barrio Logan Planning Group Chair
  • Colleen Fitzsimmons, Executive Director, SD Green Building Council
  • Denice Garcia, Chief of Staff, Office of Supervisor Nora Vargas
  • Martha Gilmer, CEO, San Diego Symphony
  • Alan Gin, Economics Professor, USD
  • Joel Hermosillo, Manager, Downtown City Centre BID
  • Donna Jones, land use attorney
  • Carol Kim, Business Manager, San Diego Building Trades Council
  • Jennifer Luce, Principal & architect, LUCE et studio
  • Jack McGrory, former San Diego City Manager
  • Mark Nelson, Board Chair, San Diego County Taxpayers Association
  • Bill Ponder, Director of Community Engagement and Programs, Burnham Center for Community Advancement
  • Stephen Russell, President & CEO, San Diego Housing Federation
  • Dr. Ricky Shabazz, President, San Diego City College
  • Tony Young, former City Council President
  • Mike Zucchet, General Manager, San Diego Municipal Employees Association

The Committees first meeting is on Monday, Sept. 19 at 3:30 p.m. on Zoom. All meetings will be open to the public, compliant with the Ralph M. Brown Act and invite public participation.

Deputy Chief Operating Officer Kris McFadden and Chris Ackerman-Avila, Land Use Policy Advisor to Mayor Gloria, will staff the committee.

Jay Goldstone, the Citys outgoing interim Chief Operating Officer, will act as Special Adviser to the Mayor, helping guide the Civic Center and Sports Arena redevelopments.