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Disposition Strategy and Implementation of Land Leases for the Use of Public Property for Private Development
Client: County of Contra Costa, CA, Department of Public Works
dashed line separator Gruen Gruen + Associates (GG+A) was retained by the Contra Costa County (CA) Public Works Department to evaluate the marketability and potential for disposition for two parcels at Buchanan Field that were not needed for the operation of the airport. A market study was conducted and utilized in a series of financial analyses to identify the potential for development of the parcels. These market and financial analyses then led to a series of recommendations concerning actions the County should take before offering the sites for lease.

The actions for one of the sites included rezoning and the completion of environmental impact work for the use of the site in line with a building program recommended by GG+A. On this 13.3-acre site, GG+A recommended the development of 416,000 net square feet of office space, a parking garage and a restaurant. The second site was identified for subsequent development after the completion of planned street improvements that would make it a great deal more accessible.

GG+A worked with the County to prepare a bid proposal for an option to ground lease the first site as the County took steps to obtain the required zoning and environmental approvals. After the zoning and environmental approvals were received, a prepared bid package was sent out to three reputable and experienced developers. GG+A then worked with the County to answer questions by the three developers as they prepared their responses to the option for a ground lease. GG+A staff also sat on the Selection Board that interviewed the three developers and prepared a review of the proposals made by the developers for the County. A final decision was made and one of the developers was selected.

After the selection process, a rather lengthy period of negotiation took place to refine the details of the ground lease itself. GG+A was active in that negotiation which culminated in the developer exercising the option he had paid for initially and signing the ground lease and beginning construction.

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