In 1996, Puerto Rico made a public commitment to develop a convention center. C.H. Johnson Consulting served as project manager and oversaw a team of twelve local and international consulting firms to define the convention center and its 70 acre supporting neighborhood.
The analysis called for a first phase 500,000 square feet convention center, 750,000 square feet of office space, 600 residential units, a retail complex, a World Trade Center license, two hotels, offering 1,200 rooms and casinos between them.
As part of the engagement, a land planning firm was hired, under C.H. Johnson Consulting’s contract, and we worked with them to devise a specific development concept, identifying block parcels and a specific phasing strategy. Our firm managed the financial modeling for the entire project. The real estate economics could not cover the required infrastructure costs, so an operating entity was created that assesses a sales tax of up to two percent on retail and hotel sales.
The project’s goal is to create an enclave that is comfortable to visitors and introduce them to Puerto Rico. The project also introduces numerous locally supported land uses creating demand for the project.
C.H. Johnson Consulting solicited developers for commercial elements using a two-stage solicitation process. We identified and negotiated a major international development firm to build two office buildings, a hotel, and the retail complex. We selected local developers to build the smaller office and residential projects.