San Diego Business Journal

Construction , and leasing activity , is coming along on two new buildings in Liberty Station's Office District, part of the mega-mixed-use project now under way on the grounds of the former Naval Training Center in Point Loma.

According to Randy Levinson, vice president and director of office development for McMillin Commercial, the two new, identical 38,600-square-foot, two-story buildings at the Office District are more than 75 percent leased.

Stutz Artiano Shinoff & Holtz, a San Diego-based law firm, recently announced plans to relocate from its office on West A Street in Downtown and lease 15,500 square feet on the second floor of the building at 2488 Historic Decatur Road, while Aradiant Corp., a San Diego telecommunications company, has signed a lease for 4,699 square feet at 2280 Historic Decatur Road, both for early next year.

Once completed, the business campus will encompass seven buildings and 380,000 square feet of Class A office space on 22 acres, said Levinson.

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Median Rare: The median price of a single-family detached home in San Diego in October was $601,850, down 1.7 percent from September, but up 6.2 percent from October 2004, according to the California Association of Realtors.

Meanwhile, sales were down 13.4 percent from September, and down 10.5 percent from October 2004.

Putting this into perspective, statewide, the median price rose 17.2 percent, while sales decreased 2.8 percent compared with the same period a year ago.

"While California is still experiencing year-over-year double-digit price appreciation, prices are starting to level off compared with the statewide peak reached in August 2005," said Vince Malta, the president of the Realtors group. "Regionally, the median price continues to post strong gains, with the High Desert, Riverside/San Bernardino, and San Luis Obispo regions hitting record highs last month."

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Big Deals: San Ysidro Village, a 258,862-square-foot retail center in San Ysidro, has been sold by RVIP CA/WA/OR Portfolio LLC for $43 million to Westwood Financial Corp.

Pete Bethea of Burnham Real Estate's Retail Advisory Group, represented the buyer and seller of the center, which is 90 percent leased.

D.R. Horton, Inc. has purchased the $10.5 million, 47,000-square-foot former headquarters of the American Red Cross, San Diego/Imperial Counties chapter, in Hillcrest.

D.R. Horton plans to demolish the property and develop the site for residential and retail uses.

GVA IPC has brokered more than $25.5 million in sales on behalf of the Red Cross, including the recent purchase of a new 34,500-square-foot headquarters building in Kearny Mesa.

Tim Mills of Burnham Real Estate represented the buyer in the transaction.

University Square, a 184,196-square-foot retail center in San Diego, has been sold by Shane University LLC, Maltzman University LLC, Hollywood Firestone LLC, and Newmark University LLC, to Lakha Investments for $41.3 million.

Burnham's Bethea represented the buyer and sellers. John Jennings and Rob Ippolito of Burnham's Retail Advisory Group will handle leasing of the Square, which is 97 percent occupied.

Equastone, a San Diego real estate investment firm, has acquired One International Centre, a 15-story, 298,943-square-foot, Class A office tower in San Antonio, from Mass Mutual Life Insurance Co. The purchase price was not disclosed.

According to Equastone, it plans to invest at lest $100 million in Texas in 2006.

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Kudos: Nancy Scull and Melissa Tunnel, partners in Luce, Forward, Hamilton & Scripps LLP's real estate practice group, have been recognized by Real Estate Southern California magazine as two of the region's "Women of Influence" for 2005.

Scull has worked on real property acquisitions and dispositions of $5 million to more than $100 million. A member of Luce Forward's executive committee, she also serves as the 2005 chairwoman for the San Diego Downtown Partnership and has been selected to serve on the Urban Council for the Building Industry Association.

Tunnel specializes in affordable housing, represents for-profit and nonprofit developers in the sale, acquisition and development of residential projects, and is a founding member of HomeAid San Diego.

Kevin Forrester, a real estate attorney, has been named Realtor of the Year for 2005 by the North San Diego County Association of Realtors.

He operates Forrester Solutions, an Encinitas-based mediation and arbitration service specializing in real estate.

Jim Knorr, general superintendent for San Diego's Legacy Building Services, was named 2005 Superintendent of the Year by the American Subcontractors Association of San Diego County.

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Dollars For Scholars: JCJ Blackman Architecture, Inc. recently unveiled a new scholarship fund for aspiring designers and architects in San Diego.

The scholarship will be available to students who wish to pursue a design or architectural degree at a San Diego-based college or university. They also will have access to a professional mentor, internship opportunities, and possible employment after graduation with JCJ.

The fund was established in honor of the company's founders and past San Diego architects Richard A. Wheeler and W. Gayne Wimer. The scholarship committee will announce the first scholarship recipients in July.

Send residential and commercial real estate news to pbroderick@sdbj.com or via fax at (858) 571-3628.