Architect's rendering of Seaport San Diego project with 500-foot spire.
Architect’s rendering of Seaport San Diego project with 500-foot spire.

Updated at 2:55 p.m. Oct. 13, 2016

The Port of San Diego Board of Commissioners on Thursday put off a decision on the future of the Seaport Village property, but selection of a developer could be made at an upcoming meeting.

Port staff asked for direction on how to proceed with a proposal for a major overhaul of the downtown tourist attraction, but commissioners continued the item to a future meeting — the date of which hasn’t been set.

The commissioners asked that the public be notified that a developer for the site could be selected at that time, port spokeswoman Tanya Castaneda told City News Service.

In July, the commissioners selected one of six submitted proposals for further evaluation.

The $1.2 billion “Seaport San Diego” plan calls for three hotels encompassing more than 1,000 rooms, a 151,000-square foot aquarium, 480-foot-tall observation tower and a charter school focused on marine studies and music.

There would also be about 165,000 square feet of shopping space, 141,000 square feet of restaurants, 69,000 square feet of space devoted to entertainment venues, specialty cinema and meeting spaces, and 19,000 square feet for offices.

Of the hotels in the proposal, one would be a full-service facility, a second would be in the “affordable luxury” category and the third would offer elements similar to hostels.

The plan is projected to bring the port $22 million in annual rent once the project is built out in around 10 years, far above the current take of $2.6 million a year, according to staff.

Staff had asked for six to eight more months to, among other things, study hotel market demand, find out which retailers are being targeted for inclusion in the project, determine the fate of current Seaport Village tenants and clarify the marine focus of the proposed charter school.

Also a concern — the four-company entity that proposed Seaport San Diego, 1HWY1, hasn’t actually formed yet. Port staff noted that only one of the partners has experience in mixed-use development, but others have backgrounds in their specialties, like project management and building aquariums.

The other proposals haven’t actually been eliminated.

— City News Service

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.