San Diego is on the verge of a Renaissance. How do we know? Just take a look downtown and you’ll see construction cranes punctuating the skyline, construction fences surrounding plots of land, traffic cones warning drivers there’s construction ahead, and lines of cement trucks waiting to pour concrete. And that’s just in Little Italy and downtown!
A new, revitalized Seaport Village is on the drawing board, the City Council approved plans for our first Ritz Carlton Hotel at 7th and Market, and talk is getting more serious about a Convention Center expansion to accommodate Comic-Con and other large groups. For the first time in many years, the City of San Diego has a strong CIP budget – as do San Diego County and other local municipalities. SANDAG and Caltrans continue to be active with infrastructure projects. K-12 bond measures passed last November, opening the door for an array of school projects. And of course, there’s the Big Q – Qualcomm Stadium. What will happen with that? Will the empty stadium attract a new NFL football team to town? Will San Diego State University take it over for a new complex with a football stadium, classroom buildings, undergraduate housing, parking, and more? Or maybe there will be a professional soccer team taking over the site, or a world-class medical research center. All of those options are good news for those of us in the A/E/C industry, because each option requires a team of A/E planners to help bring those ideas to life so they can win approval from the proper jurisdictions.
The news keeps getting better and better because this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are many more exciting projects springing up throughout the region.
And what’s good for the industry is good for SMPS San Diego. Each segment of our industry has its own professional association, but where can you go to meet key people in all of those industry segments? SMPS San Diego, of course! We have architects, civil / structural / mechanical / electrical / and fire protection engineers, general contractors, landscape architects, environmental / geotechnical and soils engineers, cost estimators, planners, program managers, construction managers, and more. SMPS San Diego is the one place where everyone in our industry can get together to share ideas, build professional and personal relationships, network, find out about upcoming opportunities, and learn more about best practices in marketing and business development for our firms.
And the kicker is, we all have a lot of fun while doing this! At our annual planning meeting last summer, the incoming Board of Directors adopted “Striving for Excellence” as our theme. It sums up who we are in our personal lives, our businesses, and our Chapter – we are people who are always striving to be better.
But it doesn’t stop there. We want to strive to be better and we want to do it with fun and with flair, just as we do with our proposals, SOQs, and presentations. There are many images which reflect the special city that we are, but we’ve chosen only one to incorporate into our message this year. Comic-Con.
That’s right. Comic-Con. Already we have seen the emergence of some Super Heroes as our Board of Directors and their committees unleashed their Super Powers over the past six months to bring you the best, “can’t-be-missed” luncheon programs, educational workshops, Leverage Your Beverage events, and other networking opportunities.
Our Super Heroes have an even more exciting agenda for the next six months. Here are just a few of the programs we have lined up for you:
March 23: Leverage Your Beverage: Networking after work at Quartyard San Diego in the East Village.
Date TBD: Principals’ Breakfast Roundtable: A series of breakfasts designed for A/E/C principals from a broad cross-section of the industry to discuss marketing and business issues facing their firms.
April 19: Luncheon program: “Cool Streets” featuring retail wizard Garrick Brown on the design of shopping malls in the future.
May 17: Luncheon program: The Federal Market, featuring speakers from NAVFAC Southwest, the L.A. Corps of Engineers, and the Department of Veteran Affairs.
June 2: SMPS San Diego Annual Charity Golf Tournament: An opportunity to boogie down with SMPS San Diego for a groovy round of golf at the Vineyards Golf Course in Escondido – an event not to be missed!
June TBD: Bark-itecture: SMPS San Diego teams up with AIA San Diego for the Second Annual Dog-House Design Competition – woof, woof – who let the dogs out?
July 19: Luncheon Event: Our favorite public speaking coach and mentor, Jenni Prisk, shares tips and techniques for making winning presentations to our clients.
Aug. 24: SMPS San Diego Marketing and Communications Awards Gala Event: Party like Rock Stars at San Diego’s Main Library downtown to celebrate the winners of our Biennial Marketing and Communications Awards competition.
So join the fun. If you are not a member, sign up right away – many of our programs are for members only. If you are a member – sign up for a committee to help out. Let us know if you want to be considered for the Board of Directors – selections will be made in July.
And that’s not all folks – there’s much more coming up over the next 6 months and beyond. So join in and have some fun. Stay tuned for updates on our website, our weekly eblast, Facebook, and Twitter.
It is truly an honor to serve as your president during these exciting times!
SMPS San Diego Chapter President 2016–2017
SMR-ISD Consulting Structural Engineers, Inc.
Please contact me: Elizabeth@smr-eng.com