CHULA VISTA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Chesnut Properties, which has developed landmark R&D facilities and office buildings in San Diego’s UTC and Sorrento Mesa and Tempe, Arizona, over the past 25 years, has purchased the 7-acre, First Phase of Millenia Office, with an option to purchase the balance of the 28-acre site, according to Lee Chesnut, principal. The corporate/office component of the 210-acre Millenia master-planned community, Millenia Office has entitlements for 2 million square feet of Class A corporate and office space. Terms of the transaction were not released.
Chesnut announced grading has commenced on the first phase of Millenia Office, which is planned for two four-story office buildings, totaling 318,000 square feet, a parking structure for 1,200 vehicles and a 7,000-square-foot fitness center and café complex. The first phase will also include a 40,000+-square-foot city of Chula Vista library.
“Millenia is strategically located at the center of the Cali Baja Bi-National Mega-Region,” said Chesnut. “Ongoing improvements, such as the Tijuana International Airport Cross Border Terminal, transformation of Brown Field airport, completion of SR-905, and enlargement of both the San Ysidro and Otay Mesa ports of entry, position Millenia for rapid expansion among global market players,” he added. “Throughout my career, I’ve tried to position myself in areas where something great could happen. It happened in UTC. It happened in Sorrento Mesa. I believe that Millenia will become the next great business cluster in the region.”
Guy Asaro, president of Meridian Development, which is managing development of Millenia for the property owner Stratford Land, said, “Lee is a visionary and pioneer in creating best-in-class office environments. His ambitious vision meshes perfectly with Millenia’s destiny to become the future City Center of South San Diego and his leadership in building healthy, energy-efficient facilities is in tune with our commitment to sustainability.”
Asaro noted, “Chesnut Properties’ Pagago Gateway Center in Tempe was the first Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED) Gold certified office project in the country and Lee helped develop the criteria for the LEED designation.”
Millenia Office is being dubbed, “Think. Discover. Invent,” to reflect its purpose as a breeding ground for innovation and collaboration among academia, life science, research and technology. The design calls for a cluster of three global-class campus environments with integrated mid-rise and high-rise buildings, outdoor and indoor gathering spaces and extensive amenities.
“Members of the development team, including Gensler, DPR Construction, C2 Building Group, Project Design Consultants (PDC), and OJB (Office of James Burnett), are known for their expertise in designing and building highly complex and sustainable projects,” said Chesnut.
“Our overall design strategy is anchored on creating connections. For example, the first two office buildings will be linked by a series of bridges that will allow workers easy access to the out of doors and neighboring tenants,” said Chesnut. “This connectivity also enables Millenia Office to offer the first mega-sized floor plate in South County.”
Chesnut noted that the Millenia Office campuses can be delivered substantially below the cost of other Class A markets around the county. He estimates this will save companies nearly 50 percent compared to what they would pay elsewhere.
“When added to the lower cost of excellent housing nearby, the saving to employees and employers will be incredible,” Chesnut said.
Millenia, the future City Center for South San Diego, is a 210-acre sustainable, pedestrian-friendly, transit-oriented, urban-style community, now under construction. Designated a SANDAG Smart Growth Urban Center and certified under the LEED Neighborhood Development program, Millenia is planned for up to 3,000 multi-family residences, 2 million square feet of Class A office space on 30 acres, 1.5 million square feet of retail, hospitality, civic and mixed-use projects, six themed urban parks and a variety of tree-lined promenades, casual gathering places, and plazas. Population at build out will be approximately 7,500. The multi-billion-dollar development is estimated to take 20 years to complete.
Development under way in the First Phase includes a 330,000-square-foot office campus by Chesnut Properties; a 140-room Ayres Hotel; a 135,000-square-foot town center by Sudberry Properties; a 272-unit apartment neighborhood called Pulse Millenia by Fairfield Residential; 216 condominiums called Evo, Trio and Metro by Meridian Communities; 309-unit Alexan Millenia apartments by Trammell Crow Residential; 176 attached homes called Element and Z by Shea Homes San Diego; 210 affordable apartments for seniors and families by Chelsea Investment Corporation; and two parks.
About Chesnut Properties
Over the past 25 years, Lee Chesnut has successfully acquired, repositioned and/or built numerous properties totaling over 1,250,000 square feet representing complex high performance life-science buildings, large-scale corporate buildings, landmark above Class “A” buildings and industry-leading sustainable projects.
Today, Chesnut Properties is strategically positioned to bring to various communities its passionate approach to delivering complex and impactful real estate projects, with projects under way that represent over 60 acres of land and entitlements that total more than 3 million square feet.
The company utilizes multiple relationship and financial structures in order to execute this scale of development, including: Private pursuits, Long-Term Ground Leases, Customized Structured Debt strategies, and P3 relationships (Public/Private/Partnerships).