UC San Diego Tritons Take Trophy at NAIOP’s 10th Annual University Challenge

UC San Diego Tritons Take Trophy at NAIOP’s 10th Annual University Challenge

A student team from UC San Diego Department of Urban Studies and Planning submitted the winning development plan at NAIOP San Diego’s 10th annual University Challenge, held on Thursday, April 23 in a virtual format due to COVID-19 social distancing precautions.

The participating schools, which also included San Diego State University’s Corky McMillin Center for Real Estate and University of San Diego’s Burnham Moores Center for Real Estate, assembled a team of up to six students to take part in the Challenge to create a development plan to compete as the highest and best use for the proposed site. Each team presented separately before a panel of industry judges via Zoom, and then again, simultaneously, in front of a live Zoom audience after NAIOP pivoted within weeks to shift from a live to virtual event.

“Now celebrating our 10th year of the University Challenge, this event continues to grow, providing tremendous opportunities for the students while showcasing their skills to the commercial real estate industry,” said Mike McNerney, team leader for NAIOP’s judging panel and executive vice president at Lowe.

The UC San Diego student team, comprised of Sable Beltran, Chris Giammanco, Xinyi Huang, Erik Mumm, Dominic Sistena and Kacie Ting, presented their development plan for a mixed-use, 20.5-acre development site in the Morena Corridor located in Tecolote Village near Tecolote Road Trolley Station.

“UCSD stood out this year due to their consistently high performance on the written, Q&A and presentation phases,” McNerney continued. “We were particularly impressed with their broad mix of uses, STEAM theme, use of mechanical parking and the broad range of community benefits included in their master plan.”

The $630 million winning plan, called “Adante at the Bay,” proposed a symphony of arts, culture and technology, including four different residential models, an office center with lab space, a central retail-oriented promenade and a self-storage facility aimed toward artists and artisans. The plan also incorporates a central music venue, acres of green space interwoven with public art and wide, walkable sidewalks, keeping with the inspiration to create a destination that promotes a balanced and healthy lifestyle.

“We are very proud of our team’s development proposal “Andante at the Bay,” and we commend our team on the depth of their research and knowledge of the entitlement process that led to a clear vision, sound financial model, community benefits, and strong investor returns,” said Susan Peerson, AICP, of UC San Diego’s Urban Studies and Planning Program. “We congratulate all of the teams for their outstanding work in the midst of remote learning during this global pandemic.”

Entries were judged by San Diego real estate luminaries NcNerney, Ben Badiee of Badiee Development, Casey Brown from The Casey Brown Company, Dennis Cruzan of Cruzan, Perry Dealy of Dealy Development, Zack Holderman of JLL, Mike Mahoney of Ryan Companies, Kelly Moden of Community Housing Works and Colton Sudberry of Sudberry Properties.

Throughout competition, the university teams had access to volunteer experts from architectural firms LPA, Inc., Gensler or Carrier Johnson + Culture. The LPA team that was randomly selected to advise UC San Diego included Daniel Moskop, Devin Murphy, Jamie Intervalo and Matt Winter. The teams were also allowed to turn to Mark McGovern of CBRE for finance; Luis Foglio of Suffolk Construction for construction; Dave Davis of DF Davis Real Estate for appraisal; Mike Leake of Sheppard Mullin for legal assistance; and Bharat Madan from JLL for review of their financial models. The teams also accessed their alumni in the industry for assistance.

“NAIOP provides a great experience for our students to gain knowledge, experience and a network that takes years to achieve,” said USD Burnham Moores Center for Real Estate’s Executive Director Stath Karras. “These students will be tomorrow’s real estate leaders and that was clearly demonstrated in these presentations.”

Ed Pierzak, PhD, director of the Corky McMillin Center for Real Estate at SDSU, added, “The NAIOP University Challenge is an invaluable learning and networking experience. It may be the ultimate ‘hands-on’ learning experience and springboard to opportunity for San Diego’s real estate students. Given the high caliber of this year’s projects and presentations, each team should be incredibly proud of their work.”

Proceeds from University Challenge will fund scholarships for each participating school.

About NAIOP San Diego

NAIOP San Diego is a chapter of NAIOP, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association, and it comprises more than 750 members serving the local San Diego market. NAIOP is the leading organization for developers, owners and related professionals in office, industrial and mixed use/retail real estate, with 20,000 members in North America. NAIOP advances responsible commercial real estate development and advocates for effective public policy. For more information, visit www.naiopsd.org.