Although the Chula Vista Redevelopment Corporation has come to an end, the legacy of a past redevelopment project continues to play out.
In June of 2011, the U-T published an online story titled “City-subsidized building in Chula Vista faces foreclosure.” The building in question, Gateway II, is an office complex located on H Street in Chula Vista. A November 22, 2012, Daily Transcript article confirmed the building was foreclosed upon last year.
In 2004, as the project was coming to fruition, the Daily Transcript described it this way: “Phase II of Gateway Chula Vista, the $80 million, multiuse commercial office and retail complex and the epicenter of a redevelopment renaissance, is under way in the city's central business corridor. Scheduled for completion in August 2005, Gateway Chula Vista's Phase II marks the continuation of something great happening in Chula Vista.”
The project developer was Jim Pieri.
The 2011 U-T article that first broached the possibility of foreclosure provided additional insight into Gateway II’s curious financial history. Reporter Wendy Fry wrote, “During the past decade, Chula Vista has drastically scaled back services. Meanwhile, it has paid developer Jim Pieri some $2.2 million in redevelopment funds for the mid-rise, upscale office building near Third Avenue and H Street, and a total of $5 million for the entire Gateway development.
“The city hoped to recoup those subsidies by capturing an incremental increase in property-tax revenue at the site. Instead, Pieri has defaulted on the loan, according to an April 29  San Diego County Recorder document.”
Fry added: “In April, Mayor Cheryl Cox signed an amendment to the development agreement that changed limited liability ownership of the property.”
Cox and Pieri are longtime political allies and in 2002 founded a group called the Chula Vista Urban Development Corporation. Pieri’s online biography describes the corporation as “instrumental in formation of a center city development corporation for the city of Chula Vista known as the CVRC.”
Adjacent to the Gateway complex on H Street, a group called Urbana Cv, LLC, proposes to build a seven-story, 267-apartment unit. Pieri is listed on Bizipedia as an officer of Urbana Cv, LLC.