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Updates on Santee: From Business Openings to City Projects

A roundup on the latest developments in the City of Santee, focused on government and business.

The City of Santee and Mayor Randy Voepel arranged this update on the state of many projects, business openings, road repairs, redevelopment and other happenings in Santee for a presentation to New Frontier Mobile Home Community.

City Projects

The City has several major street improvements completed or underway, such as resurfacing Mission Gorge Road, and street resurfacing and storm drain replacement along Carlton Hills Boulevard.  We’re doing our best to maintain all our roadways.

We’re also taking proactive steps to monitor conditions of our citywide drainage systems—we’re one of the few cities that is proactively replacing the corrugated metal pipe system installed decades ago, and we’re using camera-technology to identify weak areas for replacement. This prevents future sink holes.

We are currently working with the San Diego River Conservancy to complete the San Diego River Trail through Santee with the addition of the Hanlon Walker multi-use path connecting to Lakeside. With this addition, we’ll have a complete system of trails along the San Diego River through Santee, connecting with the Mission Trails Regional Park to the west, and Lakeside to the east.

Redevelopment Wind-down

Because of State action, redevelopment agencies have been eliminated statewide, resulting in the loss of millions in revenues locally that were envisioned for additional projects-- like the build-out of the Riverview office park and site improvements for the future theater and hotel. As we’ve always done—we’ll find other ways to finance these projects, but it is a huge loss to the City.

Fortunately, the City was able to issue one last redevelopment bond measure in March 2011 to secure funding for extensive street and visual improvements along the Prospect Avenue industrial corridor. 

Retail News

Several new businesses and restaurants are coming to town.  The city is adding seven national chains in 2012 alone (plus Phil’s BBQ).  That will make over 130 national chain retailers and restaurants in Santee.

Since January 2012 – Fresh & Easy, Goodyear Tire and Chipotle have opened.

BevMo is opening in October and Phil’s BBQ is opening by early November.

In N Out will be open by Thanksgiving, and Chick-fil-A and Buffalo Wild Wings will open by the end of the year.

Another local favorite, the Boll Weevil, is opening soon in the former Michael’s Grill.

GTM center along Carlton Hills Blvd.recently completed a $3 million renovation of the entire center

San Diego Christian College

SDCC is relocating their campus to Santee for next year’s fall 2013 classes.  They are taking over five building in the Riverview Office Center behind Trolley Square.  They are currently at 500 enrollment and they have plans to expand their campus in Santee to 1,200 students.  This college will bring more jobs and business to Santee.

Job Growth

Job growth is holding steady.  Santee’s latest unemployment rate is the 7th lowest in the region (among 18 cities), and Santee also has the 7th highest median household income.  Both Santee and La Mesa are at 7.5 percent unemployment, compared to San Diego city and the countywide rate of 9 percent.  El Cajon is at 12.2 percent, Lemon Grove is 11.2 percent, and Lakeside is 10 percent.

Hartford has consolidated their call center operations to the 2nd floor—and there is a supply company that is moving into 1st floor  in the Hartford Offices, and bringing about 150 call center jobs to the city.  This is in addition to the new jobs coming with the retail businesses opening.

Retail, Office & Industrial Vacancy

Retail vacancy is about 5 percent in our major retail centers, and we’ve maintained that 5 percent rate throughout the Recession, which is significant.  Staff has been tracking our national chain retailers and restaurants since 2008, and Santee has actually had a net gain of 11 national chains since 2008, which is a positive sign.

Santee’s Office vacancy has been harder hit, but there are still positive trends.  For the current YTD 2012, Santee is at 27.2 percent vacancy rate, compared to 13.2 percent for East County and 15.4 percent for the region, but Santee also had a net gain for over 53,000 sf.

One of the biggest factors is the college taking over five office buildings in the Riverview park.

Santee compares very favorably in our Industrial vacancy rate of 3.4 percent for the current YTD 2012, compared to 8.2 percent for East County and 10.4 percent for the region. 

TMcC September 29, 2012 at 03:26 PM
The BIGGEST improvement is stopping the power plant! Santee City (thanks Mr. Orso-Delgado, Ms. Kush & Mr. Dale for speaking at San Diego City Council on Monday!) and a great number of excellent citizens continue the fight against the stinking power plant that is NOT NEEDED, according to experts that know. For the North Carolina applicant, Cogentrix, it's about Govt funds & shareholder profit. For SDGE it's about profits from ratepayers (in this case for $600m when all is said & done.) for a LONG time to come. Do you see where the best interest of the local people falls in this equation? This Wed, 10/3, tell Sacramento staff of the Calif Energy Commission what you think: http://savemissiontrails.org/2012/09/27/cec-wksp-10-3-12/ Millions need power--of course--and they need to stop wasting it. My employer uses "Energy Alerts" and doing so throughout the year would make conservation as routine as washing one's hands.. Conservation, renewable energy & storage--our survival depends on those. Rather than, In 'n Out, Chik-fil-A, Christian College, our priority should be our own CCA! http://www.sandiegoenergydistrict.org/ No more business development without agreements that support our city's CCA. Keep it simple, keep it locally-owned and reliable, keep the rewards invested in the community that owns it! Get CCA going!

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