The Port of San Diego invited developers June 30 to demonstrate they have the money and ability to build a hotel and convention center on Chula Vista’s waterfront.
Touting the 535-acre plot as one of the last great waterfront development opportunities in California, the port’s request for qualifications comes six years after similar plans fell apart.
Citing financial challenges after negotiations with organized labor stalled, Tennessee-based developer Gaylord Entertainment abandoned a $1 billion plan to build a 1,500-room hotel and convention center complex on the waterfront.
It was unclear whether the company, which also runs the Grand Ole Opry, would participate in the request for qualifications.
“With an improving U.S. economy and predicted increases in business and leisure travel, Chula Vista’s unique location on San Diego Bay is sure to attract strong interest from the development community,” said Cheryl Cox, mayor, Chula Vista. “Chula Vista and the port have cleared the way to create a shovel-ready project on prime bayfront property.”
Working off a master plan for the Chula Vista waterfront approved by the California Coastal Commission two years ago, the port and city government have formed a joint powers authority to handle governance, infrastructure financing and some capital funding for the convention center portion of the project. The next stage in the vetting process will be identifying a hotel brand and operator.