Street Smarts: June 2019
Greetings from the Executive Director, Heather Foley.
Originally published on TST Ink by Teri Slavik Tsuyuki.
When you think about land development, depending on your level of involvement, exposure, and to some extent politics, you’ll likely be somewhere on the spectrum of “greedy big bad business owner who scrapes the land bare of its character” to “engine of growth and opportunity building the roads, bridges, schools we take for granted will just be there”. Ok, maybe those aren’t the exact words you would use to define your ends of the spectrum, but I know my sentiment is close.
I bet most of us don’t stop and think about what the places real estate developers create mean to us, and to how we live. Or, how dramatically the way we live has changed over the past five years even, and how that demands these place makers think differently, look past what has maybe worked before, and learn from what didn’t to create places people want to be. Yesterday, at the Urban Land Institute San Diego-Tijuana District Council I listened to three developers in North County San Diego talk about what they care most about, and the challenges they face every day. They didn’t focus on the challenges of being in business, through development in the state of California is some of the most challenging in the nation. They focused on the challenges of creating places people care about and that work for the way they want to live.
“Your architect and landscape architects are the most important consultants on your team,” said Gary Levitt, owner of Sea Breeze Properties, a development company currently creating the North City community in San Marcos, surrounding Cal-State University San Marcos. North City will be the urban center for all of North County, combining residential townhomes and apartments, student housing, high-end and community-oriented retail, superb restaurants, hip taprooms, co-working spaces, entertainment facilities and commercial offices, all with access to public transit, parks, and outdoor amenities.