Experts in container rentals, sales & customization
Let us help you today! 800.686.9114

CONTACT US TODAY

WHY CHOOSE US FOR YOUR
SHIPPING CONTAINERS IN Chula Vista CA

Southwest Mobile Storage is a family-owned shipping container business founded in 1995. Our strength for more than 25 years comes from the specialized knowledge and passion of our people, along with serving over 24,000 commercial, construction and residential customers. Our 90,000 sq. ft. facility and expertise in maintaining, manufacturing, and delivering corrugated steel containers are unrivaled in the industry.

While the rental side of our business is regional, with branches throughout the Southwest, our container sales and modification operations are nationwide and becoming global. Chula Vista, CA, offers a wide selection of portable offices and mobile storage containers you can rent, buy or modify.

Our experts in container rental, sales and customization are committed to providing you with the highest quality and best experience from service to delivery - our reputation depends on it.

Whether you need shipping containers for storage, office, moving, multi-purpose or custom use, we've got your back.

LEARN MORE

WHERE WE'RE LOCATED

What Clients Say About US

STORAGE CONTAINERS AVAILABLE IN Chula Vista CA

When you choose mobile storage containers over traditional storage facilities, you get more space for less, plus the convenience of onsite, 24/7 access to your valuables. And if you can't keep a container at your location, we offer you the flexibility to store it at our place instead. Rest assured, our high-quality storage containers will keep your items safe from weather, pests and break-ins. When you need to rent, buy or modify mobile storage containers in Chula Vista, CA, look no further than Southwest Mobile Storage.

Our certified experts modify conex containers to fit any of your business needs or events.

Our shipping container modifications can help improve or expand your business. We can customize containers to any size you need, so you can rest easy knowing you have enough space for your inventory, documents, equipment or services.

Here's why you should choose us for your container modifications:

  • We offer the highest quality modifications on the market.
  • Our certified fabricators have years of combined experience in container modifications. No other company in the industry matches our expertise.
  • We have modified thousands of containers over the past 25 years for foreign and domestic clients.
  • Our certified weld and quality control inspectors ensure everything is structurally sound and built to your specifications through every step of the process.
  • We can build multiple projects simultaneously in our 90,000 sq ft fabrication facility with consistent quality and a fast turnaround.
  • Most of our competition outsources their modifications, so you don’t know who is doing the work or how much markup is involved.
  • Even after your custom container has been delivered, we still have your back. Our full-service staff can provide maintenance and quick modifications at your location.
Storage Containers Chula Vista, CA
Southwest Mobile Storage

CONTAINERS SOLUTIONS IN Chula Vista CA

 Rent Storage Containers Chula Vista, CA

COMMERCIAL MOBILE
STORAGE & OFFICES

When you own a business or manage one, it's crucial to have efficient, affordable ways to store inventory and supplies, whether it's to grow your business or adapt to changes in the market. Renting or buying storage containers to keep at your business eliminates the cost and hassles of sending your staff to offsite storage facilities. If you're in need of a custom conex solution, we'll modify shipping containers into whatever you need to grow your business. Whether it's new paint with your branding, a durable container laboratory for scientific research, or mobile wastewater treatment units,our unrivaled fabrication facility and modification expertshave you covered.

REQUEST A QUOTE

CONSTRUCTION
STORAGE & OFFICES

We know how important it is for your construction company to have reliable, secure storage and comfortable office space at your jobsite. All our storage containers for rent in Chula Vista, CA, come standard with first-rate multi-point locking systems, so you can rest assured your tools, equipment and materials are safe and secure. We also understand that construction can run long or finish early. We'll accommodate your schedule, even on short notice, and will prorate your rent after your first 28 days, so you don't have to pay for more than you actually need. With us, you also won't have to deal with the hassle of a large call center. Instead, you'll have dedicated sales representatives who will work with you for the entirety of your business with us.

REQUEST A QUOTE
 Storage Containers For Rent Chula Vista, CA
 Mobile Storage Containers Chula Vista, CA

RESIDENTIAL
STORAGE CONTAINERS

Get 24/7 access to your personal belongings without ever leaving your property. Whether you need short-term storage during home renovations or to permanently expand your home's storage space, our conex containers for rental, sale and modification in Chula Vista, CA, are the most convenient, secure solution. With our first-rate security features, using a storage container for your holiday decorations, lawn equipment, furniture, and other items will keep your contents safer than if you used a shed. Don't have room on your property? We also offer the option to keep your container at our secure facility. Our experienced team is here to help you find the perfect solution for your needs.

REQUEST A QUOTE

MOBILE OFFICE CONTAINERS AVAILABLE IN Chula Vista CA

Our ground-mounted mobile offices provide comfortable, temperature-controlled workspace without the extra expenses associated with portable office trailers, like stairs, metal skirting or setup and removal fees. Whether you only need one workspace, storage to go with it, or separate rooms in one container, we've got you covered. With our 500 years of combined container fabrication experience, rest easy knowing your mobile office is of the highest quality craftsmanship when you choose Southwest Mobile Storage.

CONTAINER SIZES AND TYPES

Standard Storage Containers for Rent

SMS-Single-Bay-Doors
10' Single Door Container
15' Single Door Container
20' Single Door Container
24' Single Door Container
30' Single Door Container
40' Single Door Container
45' Single Door Container
SMS-Dual-Bay-Doors
24' Double Door Container
30' Double Door Container
40' Double Door Container

Standard Storage Containers for Rent

SMS-Office-Dual-window
10' Open Bay Offices
20' Open Bay Offices
40' Open Bay Offices
40' Office with Split Rooms
SMS-Office-Single-window-storage
20' Office/Storage Combo
24' Office/Storage Combo
40' Office/Storage Combo

HOW IT WORKS

Shipping Rentals Container Type

Choose Your Container Type
Whether you need storage, office or combo space, determine how many containers, what sizes and door types your business needs.

Shipping container Arrow
Shipping container rentals Options

Choose What Options You Need
Select what add-ons, accessories and utilities you'd like.

Shipping container Arrow
Shipping container Determine Security

Determine Security Needs
All of our storage containers come standard with dual-lock vault-like security.

Shipping container Timeframe

What's Your Timeframe
Standard delivery is within 3-5 days of order. If you need it sooner, we'll do our best to accommodate.

Shipping container arrow
Shipping container Delivery

Delivery
Are we taking your packed container directly to your new location? Or do you need to store it at our location until you're ready?

Southwest Mobile Storage
Southwest Mobile Storage

FIRST-RATE SECURITY
SETTING THE STANDARD IN CONTAINER STORAGE SAFETY & SECURITY

Shipping container rentals

Up to six points for adding locks to your conex container, including a high-security slide bolt for puck locks.

Extra-long lockbox to ensure you always have at least one lock keeping your mobile storage container safe from break-ins.

Shipping container Security
Southwest Shipping container rentals

No holes to ensure your rental shipping container is wind and watertight.

Our 14-gauge corrugated steel containers are stronger than other storage solutions like pods.

Shipping container 4 Guage steel
Southwest Shipping container

HAS YOUR BACK EVERY STEP OF THE WAY

 Rent Shipping Containers Chula Vista, CA
HIGHEST QUALITY, BEST VALUE

Shop and compare. When it comes to quality, delivery, security and service, you won't find a better value.

Shipping container highest quality
 Portable Storage Containers For Rent Chula Vista, CA
FIRST-RATE SECURITY

High security, multi-point locking systems come standard on all our rental containers at no additional cost.

Shipping container First-Rate-Security
 Storage Container Rental Chula Vista, CA
UNRIVALED FACILITY & EXPERTISE

90,000 sq ft indoor fabrication center and certified experts with more than 500 years combined experience in customized container modification.

Shipping container unrivaled expertise
 Shipping Containers For Rent Chula Vista, CA
SUPERIOR SERVICE

One reliable point of contact, seamless delivery and dependable service you can trust every step of the way.

Shipping container rating

CONTACT US TODAY TO GET A FREE QUOTE!

In a few short minutes, our helpful staff can answer all your questions.

CALL 866.525.7349
REQUEST A QUOTE
 Shipping Containers For Mobile Office Chula Vista, CA

Latest News in Chula Vista, CA

7 Popular Chula Vista Neighborhoods: Where to Live in Chula Vista in 2024

Chula Vista, CA, is known for its beautiful weather, stunning coastal views, and diverse community. With its close proximity to San Diego and the vibrant cultural scene, Chula Vista draws residents looking for a relaxed yet lively lifestyle. Whether it’s the charming neighborhoods, the variety of outdoor activities, or the delicious dining options, this city always has something to explore and enjoy.For example, the ...

Chula Vista, CA, is known for its beautiful weather, stunning coastal views, and diverse community. With its close proximity to San Diego and the vibrant cultural scene, Chula Vista draws residents looking for a relaxed yet lively lifestyle. Whether it’s the charming neighborhoods, the variety of outdoor activities, or the delicious dining options, this city always has something to explore and enjoy.

For example, the average rent in Chula Vista is $2,912, while the median home sale price is $750,000. To help you find the right area to live, Redfin has collected 7 popular Chula Vista neighborhoods to check out. You’ll find neighborhoods for every lifestyle, whether you plan to buy a home or rent an apartment in Chula Vista.

Your next home is just a tap away

Access new homes anytime, anywhere with the Redfin app. Download app 1. Downtown

Downtown is located in the heart of Chula Vista, a vibrant urban area with a variety of attractions, including Memorial Park, San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge, and the Chula Vista Marina. Residents can enjoy the scenic views of the San Diego Bay and stroll through Friendship Park. Downtown has modern high-rise condos and historic Spanish-style homes. The neighborhood has a range of architectural styles, from contemporary designs to classic Mediterranean-inspired structures.

Median Sale Price: $530,000

Average Rent for 1-Bedroom Apartment: $2,270 | Average Rent for 2-Bedroom Apartment: $3,020

Homes for Sale in Downtown | Apartments for Rent in Downtown

2. Eastlake

Eastlake is situated in the eastern part of Chula Vista and is known for its residential environment and beautiful landscapes. The neighborhood is home to the Eastlake Village Center, offering a variety of shopping and dining options. You can also explore the nearby Otay Lakes County Park and Mountain Hawk Park. Eastlake features a mix of single-family homes, townhouses, and condominiums. The architectural styles in the area range from modern craftsman designs to Spanish colonial-inspired structures.

Median Sale Price: $587,000

Average Rent for 2-Bedroom Apartment: $2,995

Homes for Sale in Eastlake | Apartments for Rent in Eastlake

3. Hilltop

Hilltop has panoramic views of the city and the surrounding mountains. The neighborhood is home to Hilltop Park, a popular green space, and the Chula Vista Golf Course. Hilltop features single-family homes and townhouses, with architectural styles ranging from contemporary designs to Mediterranean-inspired structures.

Median Sale Price: $730,000

Average Rent for 1-Bedroom Apartment: $2,625 | Average Rent for 2-Bedroom Apartment: $3,320

Homes for Sale in Hilltop | Apartments for Rent in Hilltop

4. Otay Ranch

Otay Ranch is in the southeastern part of Chula Vista. It’s a planned community and has plenty of amenities surrounding the area. The neighborhood has easy access to the Otay Ranch Town Center, a popular shopping area, and North Island Credit Union Amphitheatre, a concert venue. You can explore the Otay Lakes County Park, Otay Open Space Preserve, and the Hollenbeck Canyon Wildlife Area for outdoor recreation. Otay Ranch has single-family homes, townhouses, and condos.

Median Sale Price: $775,000

Average Rent for 1-Bedroom Apartment: $2,517 | Average Rent for 2-Bedroom Apartment: $3,450

Homes for Sale in Otay Ranch | Apartments for Rent in Otay Ranch

5. Rancho del Rey

Rancho del Rey is a suburban neighborhood with easy access to the city’s amenities. The neighborhood is home to Discovery Park and Southwestern College, a community college. Rancho del Rey features a mix of single-family homes and townhouses, with architectural styles ranging from modern designs to Spanish colonial-inspired structures.

Median Sale Price: $917,500

Homes for Sale in Rancho del Rey | Apartments for Rent in Rancho del Rey

6. Rolling Hills Ranch

Rolling Hills Ranch is situated in the eastern part of Chula Vista, offering a tranquil suburban environment with scenic views of the surrounding hills. The neighborhood is home to Montevalle Park, a 29-acre green space with a dog park, trails, and sports fields. You can also explore the nearby hiking trails and open spaces, like the Proctor Valley Natural Resource Area. Rolling Hills Ranch features single-family homes and townhouses, with architectural styles ranging from modern designs to Spanish colonial-inspired structures.

Median Sale Price: $1,112,500

Homes for Sale in Rolling Hills Ranch | Apartments for Rent in Rolling Hills Ranch

7. Sunbow

Sunbow is a residential community with a variety of amenities. The neighborhood is home to Veterans Park and Sunbow Park, both popular outdoor destinations. Sunbow has single-family homes and townhouses, with architectural styles ranging from modern designs to Spanish colonial-inspired structures.

Median Sale Price: $789,500

Average Rent for 1-Bedroom Apartment: $1,650

Homes for Sale in Sunbow | Apartments for Rent in Sunbow

Methodology: All neighborhoods must be listed as a “neighborhood” on Redfin.com. Median home sale price data from the Redfin Data Center during February 2024. Average rental data from Rent.com during February 2024.

If you are represented by an agent, this is not a solicitation of your business. This article is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for professional advice from a medical provider, licensed attorney, financial advisor, or tax professional. Consumers should independently verify any agency or service mentioned will meet their needs. Learn more about our Editorial Guidelines here.

Alison is part of the content marketing team and enjoys writing about housing affordability and home interior design ideas. Her dream home is a cottage-style house with a chef’s kitchen and a cozy room to store and play vinyl records.

Connect with Alison

Here's who is running for Chula Vista City Council districts 3 and 4 for the 2024 California Primary

Chula Vista voters will be asked this Election Day to narrow down a field of candidates for two seats on the city council left vacant in the middle of their terms.The District 3 and District 4 seats are on the ballot for the 2024 California Primary Election on March 5, 2024. District 3 council member represent the Otay Ranch area of Chula Vista while the Dist. 4 council member represents southwestern portion of the city.The District 3 seat was vacated when then-Councilmember Steve Padilla was elected to the State Senate in 2022...

Chula Vista voters will be asked this Election Day to narrow down a field of candidates for two seats on the city council left vacant in the middle of their terms.

The District 3 and District 4 seats are on the ballot for the 2024 California Primary Election on March 5, 2024. District 3 council member represent the Otay Ranch area of Chula Vista while the Dist. 4 council member represents southwestern portion of the city.

The District 3 seat was vacated when then-Councilmember Steve Padilla was elected to the State Senate in 2022. Five candidates are vying for the seat: David Alcaraz, Michael Inzunza, Christos Korgan, Leticia Munguia, and Daniel Rice-Vazaquez.

The two candidates with the top two votes will move ahead to the November General Election, where the new Dist. 3 representative will be chosen by voters.

The same is true for District 4.

The District 4 seat was vacated in February when Councilwoman Andrea Cardenas resigned about a week before pleading guilty to two felonies stemming from fraud accusations tied to her political consulting business.

She was already running for re-election and remains on the March 5 ballot, despite her resignation and felony conviction. Her attorney said Cardenas stopped campaigning but has not publicly announced if she wants to remove her name from consideration.

Five others are vying for the Dist. 4 seat: Christine Brady, Cesar Fernandez, Deflina Gonzalez, Rudy Ramirez, and Jose Sarmiento.

So what happens if Cardenas is a top two vote-getter?

Chula Vista rules say no one can sit on the City Council if they are convicted of a felony. However, Cardenas has an opportunity to knock her felonies down to misdemeanors later this year, before the General Election. In a weird twist, Andrea Cardenas could be reelected to the seat she vacated months before.

Six of the 11 candidates responded to a brief survey about the issues facing the City of Chula Vista. Most of the six listed public safety and the city’s growing homeless population as the biggest concerns.

Could a four-year university be coming to Chula Vista?

Local leaders Wednesday praised a decision by Gov. Gavin Newsom to exempt 383 acres in Chula Vista from the Surplus Lands Act, advancing longstanding plans to bring a four-year university to the South Bay city."This project represents a monumental step forward towards addressing a wide array of inequities that South Bay residents face daily," said state Sen. Steve Padilla, D-Chula Vista. "Universities offer incredible economic opportunities for the surrounding communities in addition to the increased capacity and access...

Local leaders Wednesday praised a decision by Gov. Gavin Newsom to exempt 383 acres in Chula Vista from the Surplus Lands Act, advancing longstanding plans to bring a four-year university to the South Bay city.

"This project represents a monumental step forward towards addressing a wide array of inequities that South Bay residents face daily," said state Sen. Steve Padilla, D-Chula Vista. "Universities offer incredible economic opportunities for the surrounding communities in addition to the increased capacity and access they provide to higher education. This is an investment in the future of this region."

Earlier this year, the state said the acres set aside for university district development in the eastern part of the city, near the Lower Otay Reservoir, must be made available for housing developers.

Assemblyman David Alvarez, D-Chula Vista, quickly began work in Sacramento to keep the area open for a proposed university. Newsom's decision this week will do just that.

"We now have the opportunity to create a regional university for the South Bay and open doors to future generations looking for new educational experiences," Alvarez said. "Individuals with a bachelor's degree have greater earning power and can earn about $32,000 more annually than those with a high school diploma."

Chula Vista is the only city in California with a population greater than 200,000 residents that does not have a non-profit or state university within its city limits. The population as of the 2020 census was 275,487 — making it the 15th largest city in the state. City leaders have lobbied for a four-year university since at least 1993, when the Otay Ranch General Development Plan was adopted.

"We are grateful for Assemblymember Alvarez and Senator Padilla for helping protect the city's vision for a 21st-century university in the South Bay," Chula Vista Mayor John McCann said. "After decades of planning and work to secure 383 acres, we are now able to continue negotiations that will advance the University-Innovation District."

The passage of the bill will allow the city to continue negotiations with a master developer.

According to city documents, the campus would contain a four-year university, a technology park and a global energy research center. The campus will "offer an opportunity to focus research and training on renewable energy sources and environmentally-friendly manufacturing and construction processes."

Harborside Park closure highlights Chula Vista's parkland divide

Harborside Park wasn’t on the agenda at the Chula Vista City Council meeting late last month. But it was on residents’ minds.As city leaders discussed potential sites for future public parks, several people took the podium to remind them that many were still waiting for updates on parks that already exist — including Harborside, which has been closed for more than a year.“It’s not really fair for the east side to get all of these quality parks,” said Chula Vista resident John Acosta. “D...

Harborside Park wasn’t on the agenda at the Chula Vista City Council meeting late last month. But it was on residents’ minds.

As city leaders discussed potential sites for future public parks, several people took the podium to remind them that many were still waiting for updates on parks that already exist — including Harborside, which has been closed for more than a year.

“It’s not really fair for the east side to get all of these quality parks,” said Chula Vista resident John Acosta. “Do you forget about people on the west side?”

The ongoing closure of Harborside Park and city leaders’ controversial decision to explore leasing or selling the land for housing has drawn renewed attention to the unequal way that Chula Vista’s parks are distributed across the city.

The divide is between East Chula Vista — the newer, wealthier side of the city — and West Chula Vista — which is older and home to more working class neighborhoods.

East Chula Vista has almost three and a half times the amount of park space that the city’s west side has, according to a 2021 report by a now-dissolved city watchdog group called the Growth Management Oversight Commission.

That disparity has remained mostly unchanged in the last several years. But at least 100 more acres of land in East Chula Vista has been set aside for future parks.

City leaders say they are exploring some possible ways to bring new parks to the west side. Still, many residents say the city’s park divide is an ongoing source of frustration.

Chula Vista’s park divide is largely a result of the different eras during which parts of the city were built, according to the city Parks and Recreation Department.

The city began as a dense region to the west of the I-805 freeway. In those early decades, Chula Vista had no minimum requirements for park space, and the city’s approach to park development was “somewhat happenstance in nature.”

In the 1970s and 1980s, that changed. The city council began regulating parkland — first setting a goal of having 2 acres per every 1,000 residents, then later upping it to 3 acres.

Development of the westside had slowed by then. But the city was beginning to sprawl outward into the hills to the east, kickstarting construction of the Eastlake and Rancho del Rey neighborhoods. The new requirements encouraged developers to build parks more frequently on the new eastside.

In recent years, newer building codes have also required that developers help fund new parkland as part of their projects, which has led to even more parks in East Chula Vista.

RELATED: As Chula Vista weighs closing Harborside Park for good, residents in nearby mobile homes are watching closely

When Harborside Park opened in Southwest Chula Vista in 2006, it was the first park to be built on the west side in over two decades.

Public parks are incredibly valuable to the people who live nearby, especially for families and young children. Studies have shown that parks encourage physical fitness, improve air quality and absorb heat. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have recommended parks as a way to battle obesity.

“We see from lots of national data that people who live closer to parks are more likely to be healthier and be more physically active,” said San Diego State University professor Elva Arredondo, who studies health disparities. “There's a very strong link there.”

But many Americans do not have public parks in their neighborhoods — a loss that lower income residents and people of color experience disproportionately. That gap in access to parkland, Arredondo said, means many people are being deprived of an essential resource.

“I think it is a right,” she said. “We would probably see less or fewer disparities in a lot of health outcomes if we had opportunities to be active, if we had opportunities to connect with neighbors and decompress.”

West Chula Vista does have its share of beautiful parks. Resident Alondra Padilla said she and her two kids drive to visit Hilltop Park every day. Padilla’s son Mateo has autism, and she said he loves the smell of the towering eucalyptus trees, which help keep him calm.

“That's the reason we love to come in here,” Padilla said.

But Padilla also said she wanted to see the city build more parks on the west side. Because of Mateo’s autism, she said, they often need to move from park to park during the day. But there are only a handful of parks close to her apartment in Southwest Chula Vista, including the now fenced-off Harborside Park.

“We need more for the kids,” she said.

The loss of Harborside Park has not significantly changed the overall distribution of parkland — the park itself is just 5 acres — but it has reignited frustrations over the issue. Questions about future parks on the west side have resurfaced in city council discussions, local protests, and meetings of the Parks and Recreation Commission.

“There aren't very many areas where in the future you can have a future park,” said Parks and Recreation Commissioner Martin Calvo during a meeting earlier this year. “Once Harborside is gone, it's gone.”

“Just so everybody knows,” another commissioner added, “the Council made the decision to close the park without asking us our opinion.”

City leaders say the disparity in parkland won’t be easy to resolve. Still, they say they are exploring some different ways to add new parks on the westside.

At the Oct. 24 City Council meeting, Mayor John McCann said a new agreement with the Los Angeles construction company Landify ECT will allow Chula Vista to evaluate several potential sites for new parks.

City staff said the company could help the city cover the costs of building new parks through its unique workflow, which involves giving the soil to an excavation company for re-use and using the fees to fund the park itself.

The sites they will explore include one on the west side — the proposed Lower Sweetwater Community Park site, which would sit along I-805 just west of Sweetwater River Park.

“It seems like just a perfect place to put a park,” McCann said. “To be able to work with the neighbors and the community to make it happen, and do it in a way that is fiscally responsible for this city.”

Chula Vista Parks and Recreation has listed a total of 16 potential new parks west of I-805. City leaders have long aspired to build a continuous “Greenbelt” of parks and trails that would run all the way around the edge of the city.

Some residents have also been working to add more greenery to parts of the city themselves. In recent years, students and teachers at Chula Vista High School have brought rows of vegetables and several large fruit trees bursting to life between the portables on the north side of campus.

Arredondo said looking for new ways to add green space on the west side is a good approach.

“Looking for those opportunities where you can create more green space in an area that's been abandoned,” she said. “I think that that's going to help create a culture where people are going to be really advocating for more space in their areas.”

‘Lesson learned’: After failed negotiations, Chula Vista and SDSU may revisit expansion plan

The city and university say a new memorandum of understanding would need to explore where and how to bring film production and other programs to Chula VistaChula Vista and San Diego State University have scrapped a plan to bring the school’s television, film and media program to the South County city, acknowledging it was rushed and poorly executed.Officials last week confirmed the original agreement reached in September 2022 collapsed after the parties failed to reach a compromise over where and how to build production...

The city and university say a new memorandum of understanding would need to explore where and how to bring film production and other programs to Chula Vista

Chula Vista and San Diego State University have scrapped a plan to bring the school’s television, film and media program to the South County city, acknowledging it was rushed and poorly executed.

Officials last week confirmed the original agreement reached in September 2022 collapsed after the parties failed to reach a compromise over where and how to build production studios at the city’s $96 million UniverCity, formerly known as the Cinematic Arts Academic Center and Library. There is hope the university and city can come to a new agreement, perhaps one that uses the new facility, but on a smaller scale than originally envisioned, or utilizes the city-owned University and Innovation District.

Regardless, the shift is a setback to what was expected to mark the beginning of a long-awaited migration of four-year universities to South County, a region of about 585,000 people that has only one public college.

In September, the city broke ground on a $96 million, 168,000-square-foot Otay Ranch complex expected to open in the fall of 2025 with state-of-the-art office space and the first public library in nearly three decades. It was also intended to house SDSU’s production studios and some of the office space would be used as classrooms.

But that plan hit a snag when the university said the building’s design could not accommodate the studios, which are central to expanding its program. Chula Vista said it had already invested millions of dollars and that it was too late to redesign the project. The parties negotiated through December to figure out if an adjacent building could be built for the studios but to no avail.

This is not the first time Chula Vista has been dealt a blow to its yearslong dream of having a four-year institution. In 2020, it was on a shortlist of cities for a California State University campus, but the state report said the region was not a viable option based on enrollment demand at that time.

It’s not over, though. SDSU is still interested in taking film production to Chula Vista, but to make it work, classrooms and offices “would have to be within close proximity to production studio spaces and all spaces must be ready to use at the same time,” university spokesperson La Monica Everett-Haynes said Thursday.

With no set timeline from the city on those separate production spaces, “there is not presently a final decision regarding where that particular program will be housed,” she added.

But there are some ideas on the drawing board.

SDSU and Chula Vista are eyeing the University and Innovation District as a potential site for film production and other university programming. The 383-acre undeveloped land, located about 1 mile south of the library complex, is where the city has long envisioned housing at least one university.

Assemblymember David Alvarez, who helped the city secure state funding for the library complex and who is closely involved in the negotiations, said the land is now a promising site because it is exempt from being declared surplus land.

Last year, he and Sen. Steve Padilla, a former Chula Vista councilmember, successfully brokered a bill that allows the city to use a majority of the land as intended rather than offering it to developers for housing.

“The hope is certainly that San Diego State is one of our major partners,” said Alvarez. “But a (383-acre) campus is very large and there’s more than enough room for one university.”

That property still needs to be primed for construction. The city is negotiating a master development agreement with real estate developer HomeFed Corp. for the land. Before anything can be penned, Chula Vista is completing the Surplus Land Act exemption process, said city spokesperson Michele Clock.

To attract institutions and to better identify what academic programming is in demand in South County, the city and SDSU will rely on a new study that has determined the workforce and education needs of the area. Chula Vista-based Southwestern College spearheaded the report.

Published in December, the 76-page study asked 1,000 residents from South County and elsewhere in San Diego what bachelor’s degree programs they were most interested in pursuing. The top responses: business (such as marketing), technology (like computer science or information technology), health care (like kinesiology or nursing), and arts (such as photography or music).

Alvarez said he does not consider a new agreement between the city and SDSU a delay, but rather an opportunity to “bring us what we actually need.”

He said he also reiterated to the city and university that before more funding is sought, “there needs to be much more work by us, certainly by the city and by any universities, and state included, that if there’s an attempt to bring a program, that there’s further analyzing … so that this doesn’t happen again.”

“So, I think that certainly a lesson learned,” he added.

Some faculty at SDSU who wished not to be named said they did not feel included in the earlier planning for expanding the film program, but felt hopeful that new plans aimed to be more strategic.

“I think the university realized they also rushed things,” one faculty member said. “So, to get us that kind of do-over where they can still get this other space and that they are probably actively looking for other departments that might be more appropriate, I think is a great idea.”

Disclaimer:

This website publishes news articles that contain copyrighted material whose use has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. The non-commercial use of these news articles for the purposes of local news reporting constitutes "Fair Use" of the copyrighted materials as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law.