Irvine Goes with the Flow in California

There were three things that attracted The Irvine Co. to developing its mega project in Irvine Spectrum.

By Keith Loria, Contributing Editor

Doug Holte, Irvine Co.
Doug Holte, Irvine Co.

The Irvine Co. will develop six “Next Gen Campus Office” buildings totaling 528,000 square feet in Irvine Spectrum, one of California’s premier live/work/play communities, at its Discovery Business Center and Sand Canyon Business Center projects.

The project will consist of four three-story buildings totaling 317,000 square feet at Discovery Business Center that will be called The Quad at Discovery Business Center; and two four-story buildings offering 211,000 square feet at Sand Canyon Business Center.

“There are three things that I think were attractive, Doug Holte, Irvine Co.’s president of office properties, told Commercial Property Executive. “Ease of access both from the highways and residential and commercial marketplace; the combination of architectural sophistication with informality; and the location within the greater Irvine Spectrum area, which is turning into a true live/work/play community.”

The office buildings will include floor-to-ceiling glass and aluminum curtain walls for superior natural light and energy efficiency; advanced infrastructure for technology; fitness and wellness centers offering indoor and outdoor activities, such as yoga and bike-sharing programs; and The Commons, a large open-air space at the heart of each campus that will feature a Wi-Fi-enabled outdoor living room, sun decks, al fresco dining, barbeques and more for people to work, collaborate or simply reboot.

The Next Gen Campus Office concept was developed by Irvine Co. after extensive research into the needs of today’s businesses and employees and visits to corporate campuses of global innovators, such as Facebook, Google and Apple.

According to Holte, plans for the new buildings were prompted by the strong demand for the Irvine Co.’s low- and mid-rise campus office space, which has a vacancy rate of less than 5 percent.

“This was driven by customer demand and the optimal product they are looking for,” he said. “We are at full occupancy with our portfolio to nexus of 20 million feet in Orange County and we were looking for the right product to satisfy the unmet demand—people who can’t find the quality office space they want.”

Both projects are nearby the 405, 5 and 133 freeways near Irvine Center Drive and the burgeoning Sand Canyon Avenue. Holte added that the bulk of the housing for the next 20 years will occur from Irvine South, so this area is becoming more of a central location.

Construction of all buildings is scheduled to begin in early 2016 with expected completion by early 2017.

Irvine Co. was the first in Orange County to return to high-rise development, building two towers in Newport Center last year at 520 and 650 Newport Center Drive; the company also has the 21-story 200 Spectrum Center in Irvine Spectrum under construction.