Press Release brought to you by Lee & Associates

Lee & Associates - North San Diego County engineers long-term relationship with City of Vista’s emerging downtown submarket


The city of Vista experienced tremendous changes in the first quarter of 2015. With new development underway and a recent influx of new businesses to the urban downtown submarket, the city has procured Lee & Associates Commercial Real Estate Services – North San Diego County agents Isaac Little, Rusty Williams, SIOR, Marko Dragovic, and Chris Roth to handle the disposition of 21 properties.

Over the past several years, the City of Vista has continued to implement road, infrastructure, and zoning improvements to its downtown area in an effort to attract these new business. The vision is to revitalize the corridor, thus providing the catalyst to spur economic growth in the area. Recent changes include:

  • The City of Vista’s partnership with two residential developers currently constructing two workforce housing projects along Santa Fe Avenue. When completed (summer, 2015), the two projects will generate significant foot traffic to the area.
  • The City of Vista is also investing in new streetscape and infrastructure improvements along S. Santa Fe Avenue which will improve and beautify the downtown area with amenities such as new sidewalks, lights, pedestrian furniture and a gateway arch.
  • The partnership between Lee & Associates Commercial Estate and the City of Vista.

While managing the multiple property project, Lee & Associates – North San Diego County has seen the demand from developers, restaurants and retail related users rapidly increase and the area, located between Vista Village Drive to Eucalyptus Avenue, and S. Santa Fe Avenue to Citrus Avenue, is quickly becoming a hotspot for business.

Below is a snapshot of current projects and activities occurring in downtown Vista:


There are two major housing projects under construction in the downtown area located on South Santa Fe.

NORTH SANTA FE APARTMENTS – Community Housing Works (CHW) is building a 68 unit housing project located on 1.4 acres immediately across from the Sprinter Station. The project will feature programs that will focus on next-generation success, family and financial stability.

PASEO POINTE – Affirmed Housing is building a 69 unit housing project with a variety of units from studios up to three bedrooms. The ground floor of the North building will feature Vista’s newest downtown retail/restaurant opportunity consisting of 3,939 square foot end cap unit with a 3,210 square foot outdoor seating area. On behalf of the ownership, our team at Lee & Associates is in the process of handling all lease negotiations for the project. Thus far, we have seen significant interest from a variety of restaurant uses.


The streetscape improvements will help stimulate private investment into the downtown. The general scope of work will include the following.

•             Narrowing S. Santa Fe from four lanes to two lanes

•             New angled parking on the west side of the street to increase public parking

•             Installing a roundabout and other traffic calming improvements

•             Widening the public sidewalks

•             Installing new street lights, street signs, landscaping and pedestrian furniture

•             Developing Linear Park on west side of S. Santa Fe, which will include the Veteran’s Memorial

•             Installing Paseo Santa Fe Gateway Arch between Main Street and East Broadway


On behalf of the City, our team at Lee & Associates has successfully sold 18 of the original 21 properties listed for sale for a total consideration of approximately $6,000,000. The majority of these properties were located in the downtown area of Vista and sold to a variety of investors, owner users and developers. These new businesses will bring additional life and foot traffic to the area. Some of the more notable sales include the following:

230 S. SANTA FE AVE – The Flying Pig Pub & Kitchen, a popular Oceanside eatery, has acquired this former 3,500 square foot bank building in Downtown Vista with plans to open it as a second restaurant location in San Diego County. The restaurant’s owner, Roger Browning, stated his restaurant concept is “Farm to Table” style. In the same fashion as their Oceanside location, the new location will have a rustic but modern feel with everything from furniture to silverware being upcycled, recycled, reused and repurposed. Featuring local organic foods and San Diego craft beers, this gastro pub will be a new hot spot in Downtown Vista. They plan to open their doors in July of 2015.

306 S. SANTA FE AVE – An approximate 8,000 square foot retail/warehouse building once occupied by “Gil’s Feed” was recently sold to a local investor. The investor is currently in the process of restoring/renovating the building originally built in 1945 with plans to then lease it to a new restaurant, microbrewery tasting room or a retail related use. If you drive by the property now, you will notice the corner of the property has been cut away, to make room for the new roundabout. Our team at Lee & Associates will be marketing this property on behalf of the ownership and will be releasing marketing material in the next few weeks.

127 MAIN STREET – The Vista Chamber of Commerce has purchased an approximate 2,125 square foot retail building. Previous to the sale, the Chamber had leased the property for the past 5 years from the City of Vista. John Meyer, the Director of Redevelopment stated “it’s a real feather in their cap that they’ve been able to position themselves to own their own building.”

150 EAST BROADWAY – An approx. 2,900 square foot two story office/retail building was purchased by a local investment company Tideline Partners who plans to reposition the property and lease out retail and office suites from 342 – 1,450 square feet. The renovations include full replacement of building systems, energy efficient upgrades to interior and building envelope and new Class “A” style interior improvements. Lev Gershman, the managing partner stated “With the help of our North Park design team, L2 Architects, we will deliver an efficient modern building. We believe there is demand for this product and it will continue to grow as skilled and educated young families seeking affordable home ownership, access to employment and life style amenities continue to find value along the 78 corridor.”


The activity driven by the City efforts and that of the property sales have created additional momentum for new businesses in the downtown area. The Belching Beaver, a local favorite brewery recently purchased the former First National Bank of Southern California facility which is located at 302 East Broadway. They are in the process of remodeling the 6,700 square foot building to accommodate both a tasting room and restaurant. Kevin Ham, the Economic Development Director said “The city’s investment of time and effort to revitalize the area, are bearing fruit with several new businesses moving in like 50 Barrels Winery, the Flying Pig, Wavelength Brewery, Metaphor Boutique, Lush Lounge, Partake Gastro Pub and Belching Beaver as well as other developments in the works. These efforts take the involvement of property owners, developers, brokers, business interests, the City and others to achieve the amazing growth that we are experiencing. This is and is example of everyone working together for the improvement of our downtown areas. We are extremely excited to see a thriving downtown and are looking forward to see businesses continue to move into Vista”. Please see the following aerial map outlining some of the new things going on in downtown Vista.


As the Cities selected Broker, Lee & Associates has been very involved in the sale of the City properties and in the recruitment efforts to bring new business to the City of Vista. We still have a handful of properties for sale and lease in the area, so please contact us for additional information regarding our team’s availabilities. Feel free to contact Isaac Little at 760-929-7862 or email him at

04/01/2015 - 09:00


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