San Dieguito to consider moving forward with district office in Solana Beach

A rednering of the proposed SDUHSD district office on the Earl Warren campus.

A new district office for the San Dieguito Union High School District is back on the agenda this week.

At its Feb. 27 meeting, the board will consider a $352,412 contract with Ruhnau Clarke Architects for partial architectural/engineering services for a proposed center on the Earl Warren campus as well as a $257,673 agreement for the same services to make improvements to the existing district office on Encinitas Boulevard.

The San Dieguito district and Superintendent Robert Haley have been exploring the potential for a new district office since 2018, with the goal for an administrative building that is more centrally located as well as a building that is more collaborative, open and transparent.

At an October 2019 workshop, the results of a feasibility study shared that the costs associated with constructing a new building would be around $20.8 million. Rather than sell the existing office building in Encinitas, the district would modernize it to attract rental office tenants and create revenue. The approximate investment needed for the building to attract tenants would be $2 million to $5 million.

The district has $1 million available in its capital funding budget.

The proposed 25,000-square-foot new office building would be located on the field space next to Earl Warren and the Solana Beach Library, pulled toward Stevens Avenue. Renderings by Ruhnau Clarke in the fall detailed a large board room with big windows fronting Stevens, more space for staff collaboration and professional development as well as wellness components such as a gym and access to the outdoors.

At the November 2019 board meeting, several Solana Beach residents spoke out against the proposal that they said would take away field space which is in short supply in Solana Beach. The president of the Solana Beach Soccer Club has reached out to the board asking that the lower field at Earl Warren remain a field available for children and families to play on and enjoy.