Doug Manchester has exited the media business and fully returned to what’s helped him amass his fortune: real estate.
The 73-year-old San Diego developer closed on some high-dollar transactions this year — from selling off the business portion of the San Diego Union-Tribune for $85 million to unloading his majority stake in the ultra-luxe Grand Del Mar hotel for a reported $230 million. He even carved out time this summer to snatch up a getaway mansion in Rhode Island.
Unlike those done deals, others on his plate are still very much in flux. And even though he’s left San Diego media, he still will have lots of influence on the city’s future through these projects.
A Manchester spokeswoman said the businessman has been on the East Coast and was unavailable to comment on his project’s recent developments. But here’s the latest on those projects:
The Union-Tribune Development
Manchester has put the Union-Tribune property on the market. The Tribune Publishing Company, which bought the paper’s business but not the main office, declined to discuss whether it will continue leasing in that location or relocate. The paper’s lease is set to end next May, a year from when Manchester sold to Tribune. That timing would suggest the Union-Tribune only has a few months to decide whether to move or to stay in Mission Valley, since both options would require time, either to build out a new space or to make improvements to the current one.
Any sale appears to depend on the final approval of Manchester’s proposal to develop the nearly 13 acres of land surrounding the U-T into a 200-unit apartment project. The city planning commission greenlit the project in June. But well-known environmental attorney Marco Gonzalez appealed that decision, saying the project’s environmental analysis obscured its potential impact on climate change.
We Stand Up for You. Will You Stand Up for Us?
While I'm no sympathizer to Mr. Manchester, can we move on with the Navy-Broadway project? That super-block is an eyesore and just about anything that can be built there will be an improvement. If it puts more money in to Mr. Manchester's hands, so be it.
Here's the lowdown on Manchester's plans: The reason he's back east is to finalize arrangements for his Vice Presidential candidacy on the Donald Trump ticket! After Trump did so well in the first "debate" he decided he needed a fellow entrepreneur to join him, so Papa Doug get's the gig.