County of San Diego Waterfront Park and Parking Structure

County of San Diego Waterfront Park and Parking Structure

2015 | Civic Buildings | National Award — Excellence | National Award — Merit

Challenge Design-Build Project Delivery Addressed

Design-build allowed the project team to encounter and handle various unforeseen on-site challenges while maintaining schedule. The County utilized the design-build process to facilitate collaboration and to provide the community with a new Waterfront Park on time, with zero change-orders, no claims, and an exemplary safety record.


The County of San Diego Waterfront Park and Parking Structure is downtown San Diego’s newest gem. Servicing the local community and providing a recreational destination for national and international visitors alike, more than a million guests are expected to visit and enjoy the new bayside park each year. The County of San Diego applied early programming of the project to provide bridging documents to the shortlisted design-build teams during the RFP process. Located on a 17-acre site in downtown San Diego, the park project included features such as a tree-lined promenade, two expansive greens, themed specialty gardens, plazas and terraces, a picnic area, shade trees and palm groves, massive lighted interactive fountains with splash areas for children and a unique playground. A single-level, 251-car subterranean parking garage and LEED Silver-designed public restrooms were also built. Another important element of the project entailed integrating the new park with the historic San Diego County Administration Center which was originally built in 1938.

Design-Build Team

Client/Owner: County of San Diego
Design-Builder: McCarthy Building Companies, Inc.
General Contractor: McCarthy Building Companies, Inc.
Architects: SGPA Architecture and Planning, International Parking Design
Engineers: Jessen Wright Structural Engineers, Nasland
Specialty Contractors: MA Engineers, Sparling (a Stantec Company), Schmidt Design Group, Project Management Advisors Inc. (PMA)
Duration of Construction: 19 months
Project Cost: $40,583,916