Miller Hull


San Diego, California
Driving innovation into Downtown San Diego
Client IDEA Partners
Size 360,000 SF
Completion 2017


The IDEA District is a transformative urban initiative, catalyzing 35 blocks of San Diego’s East Village into a vibrant, mixed-use, design and technology jobs cluster supporting innovation-based economic development.

Miller Hull is designing IDEA1, the first development in the IDEA District. IDEA1 is designed to support an emerging live, work, play culture in downtown San Diego and is an environment focused to attract entrepreneurial and artistic individuals and institutions. Design principles of innovation, community and art demonstrated in this initial building set the table to inspire other designers and developers defining future spaces in this dynamic and emerging urban ecosystem.

The 360,000sf full-city block development mixes offices, residential and retail uses to encourage social and business connections among inhabitants and with the broader neighborhood. Conceived of as start-up housing for entrepreneurs and creatives, IDEA1 features flexible, fresh spaces ranging from lofts, studios, ground-level live/work flats, warehouse infill units, and penthouses.  A variety of residential sizes, styles and configurations will drive a diversity of inhabitants.  Raw, reconfigurable active commercial spaces support opportunities for restaurants, breweries, creative office spaces and retail at street level.

To reinforce a mix of live, work and play experiences, a large open courtyard— ‘the HUB’—connects commercial and residential occupants in a ground-floor event space.  The HUB links not only building inhabitants but also the larger community through open paseos connecting to surrounding streets. Designed to support daily activity with seating, green space and curated art installations, The HUB also includes a 10’x16’ projection screen, stage area and Bluetooth audio for evening concerts, art openings, innovation and industry talks or other cultural events.