By: Ryan Ponce On: June 28, 2016 In: Downtown San Diego, Lifestyle, Marina District Comments: 0

There are big changes coming to Downtown San Diego’s Seaport Village!

On June 13th-14th, 2016, the San Diego Unified Port District held an open house for the redevelopment of Seaport Village. This two day event drew a crowd of over 1,200+ residents who were able to get a first hand look at the 6 proposals for the 70 acres of prime real estate. This iconic plot of land will make a huge impact on Downtown San Diego for years to come. The port has scheduled a meeting for July 13th where each team will have 20 minutes to present their proposal. The San Diego Unified Port District is hoping to have a decision by the end of 2016 as to which land usage and developer partners are best for the space. They have also warned teams that they may combined plans and ask them to work together to create something truly special.

Four of the six proposals included a redevelopment plan for the entire 70 acres, including what is now the 36 year old Seaport Village Retail Center. The current lease expires in 2018. The two plans that excluded redeveloping the retail center were the Ripley’s Aquarium of California and Tuna Harbor Pavilion. Once the Port Board chooses the proposal they feel best suits the site, they will enter negotiations on a long term lease. If everything goes as planned, these changes could happen as early as 2019.

Embarcadero District

  • Developer: Oliver McMillan
  • Architects: Renzo Piano Building Workshop, Gensler Architects and Office of James Burnett Landscape Architect
  • Size: 2.4 million square feet
Key Features
  • Three Hotels – 1,700 Rooms
  • Seaport Pavilion – Sports and Entertainment Venue (18,000 seats)
  • 325,000 sf of Retail and Restaurant Space
  • 125,000 sf of Creative Office Space
  • Scripps Institution of Oceanography – 10,000 sf Learning Center and Tidepools
  • San Diego Symphony – 2,000 sf performance space

Celebration Place

  • Developer: Manchester Financial Group and Dealy Development
  • Architects: HKS Archtect and SnØhetta and KTU&A Landscape Architects
  • Size: 718,000 square feet
Key Features
  • Hotel – 500 Rooms
  • Performing Arts Hall – 2,000 Seats
  • “San Diego Spinnaker” – 400 Foot Gondola Ride
  • Baywalk – fine mesh walking surface extending over water
  • 10,000 sf of Creative Office Space and “blue tech”
  • 200,000 sf of New Retail
  • Commercial Fishing Facilities

Ripley’s Aquarium of California

  • Developer: Ripley Entertainment
  • Architects: NA
  • Size: 111,000 sf on 4.3 Acres North of Seaport Village
Key Features
  • 750,000 Gallon Shark Tank
  • 200 Foot Long Gliding Path Through an Acrylic Viewing Tunnel
  • 50,000 Gallon Tank featuring Coastal California Marine Life
  • 40,000 Gallon Tank with Tropical Fish Typical of the Gulf of California
  • 30,000 Gallon Tank for Stingrays
  • Event Space on the Rooftop

Seaport San Diego

  • Developer: Protea Waterfront Development
  • Architects: AECOM, AVRP/Skyport studios, BIG, PCL
  • Size: 1.3 million square feet
Key Features
  • Three Hotels – 1,077 Rooms
  • 178,490 sf OdySeaCQ Aquarium
  • 480 foot Thrill Ride “Spire” observation tower
  • University of San Diego Charter High School
  • 388,625 sf of retail and restaurant space (including room for about 40% of Seaport’s existing tenants)
  • Floating Barge with a giant moving screen/stage
  • Floating Olympic-sized swimming pool off of G Street Mole
  • Smithsonian virtual reality presentations
  • Beaches, boating and sports on the Embarcadero Park North
  • Draw Bridge connecting Embarcadero North to South


  • Developer: McWhinney and DJM Capital Partners
  • Architects: RNL and Tucker Sadler Architects
  • Size: 1.2 million square feet
Key Features
  • Three Hotels – 1,000 Rooms
  • 250,000 sf of maritime related office space
  • 60,000 sf managed by Real Office Centers for early-stage companies
  • 330,000 sf of restaurant and retail space
  • “The Catch” seafood marketplace
  • 25,000 sf entertainment and performance venue
  • 40,000 sf Equinox Fitness Club
  • Kelly Slater’s wave pool covering majority of Embarcadero Park North
  • Public Beach area
  • Recreational Marina with a high-diving board

Tuna Harbor Pavilion

  • Developer: Great Western Pacific and Santa Monica Seafood (Chesapeake Fish)
  • Architects: NA
  • Size: 150,000 square feet
Key Features
  • “San Diego Great Wheel” – 200 foot Ferris Wheel on the fishing pier
  • “Wings over the Pacific – ride similar to Disney’s “Soarin’ over California
  • “dark ride” – ride that tells San Diego’s maritime history
  • pavilion with several different food concepts including Chesapeake Fish seafood processing
  • distribution and market facility
  • Crab Pot restaurant, Klondike Brewing, Alaska Sourdough Bakery, San Diego Creamery and Salmon Cooker

*All of these proposals are subject to change and these are just the initial concepts. More information is available on the Port of San Diego’s website (portofsandiego.org). 

Give me a call today at (619) 228-6790 or email me at Ryan@livingthesandiegolife.com for more information or to schedule a tour of the neighborhood!

And Always Remember, It Matters Who You Work With!