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Agreement Reached re Bayfront Parking-Garage Dispute

Carrie Rossenfeld Hospitality & Tourism

One issue revolving around the Chula Vista Bayfront redevelopment effort appears to have been resolved. The Port of San Diego and the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority have reached a settlement regarding the rental car fee currently being collected that will fund the construction of a parking garage on the Chula Vista Bayfront, according to a statement released by a representative of the Port.

The statement says the settlement came at the end of “productive discussions” and that under the settlement, the Airport Authority has agreed to withdraw from a lawsuit that was filed by two rental-car companies challenging the fee. Also, according to the report, the Port has “agreed to several significant provisions that protect a number of Airport Authority interests.”

The statement goes on to say that the Port and the Airport Authority are “committed to being good regional partners, and this settlement supports financial sustainability of the Chula Vista Bayfront, a project that will create more than 20,000 permanent jobs with a regional economic impact of more than $2 billion annually.”

Rafael Castellanos, chairman of the Port of San Diego, says in the statement, “Our San Diego region is known as a place where people put aside narrow interests and work together to overcome obstacles for the greater good. That’s why I am pleased that we have reached a settlement with the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority regarding their response to litigation over a rental-car fee, which is an important component of the Chula Vista Bayfront plan.”

Port of San Diego Commissioner Ann Moore, Chula Vista’s representative on the Board, adds in the statement, “The Chula Vista Bayfront project is a game-changer for economic development in South Bay, and we need to continue our momentum on the resort-hotel and convention center that will be a cornerstone of this project. We have reached a resolution that addresses the funding mechanism for a parking facility that will serve the public for many years to come. I’m pleased that all parties recognize the importance of this project, and now we can move forward without further delay.”

As SoCal Real Estate reported in May, on April 24, the Board of Port Commissioners and the Chula Vista City Council unanimously approved a Disposition and Development Agreement (DDA) between the Port, the City, and RIDA Chula Vista, LLC. The DDA set forth the necessary steps for the parties to authorize the financing of the project and commence construction, ultimately leading to a ground lease and required subleases for development and operations of the hotel and convention center.