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CHULA VISTA, CA-The city approved the allocation of $1.3 million to the development team of Gateway Chula Vista.

The city will make the payment despite the developer’s failure to obtain construction financing and leases for at least 50% of the first of three proposed buildings at the northwest corner of Third Avenue and H Street.

Gateway Chula Vista is a planned 347,000-sf office and retail development that is projected to revitalize the city’s Third Avenue corridor and attract high-end business. The $80 million project is the city’s largest redevelopment effort since Third Avenue’s Park Plaza in 1984.

A groundbreaking was held in April, and the first phase is scheduled to be finished in December. The next phase will begin six months later and, if all goes as planned, the complex of 62,000 sf of retail and about 285,000 sf of office space could be completed by 2005.

The lead developer, Jim Pieri, asked the city in August for an advancement of the cash portion of the first installment, citing cash flow concerns and a softening office leasing market.

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