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Mayor Faulconer, Acting Navy Sec. agree to make NAVWAR facility a transit hub

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Posted at 3:20 PM, Jan 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-23 19:16:18-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — A connecting trolley line to San Diego's airport has taken another step closer to reality.

Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly signed an exclusive agreement at the Pentagon Thursday to redevelop the former SPAWAR facility, now "NAVWAR," into a transit hub.

SANDAG and Navy plan to collaborate on a hub similar to "Grand Central Station" adjacent to the airport, as well as a modernized complex for Navy use.

"This new agreement is built on San Diego's strong naval heritage," Faulconer said. "The fact that it was signed by the Acting Secretary of the Navy inside the Pentagon sends the undeniable message that there is momentum and energy in both Washington, D.C. and San Diego to do something truly special with this property. It marks a huge next step in revitalizing this area into a civic asset that serves the U.S. Navy, the community and our regional transportation network."

According to SANDAG, one option being explored last year would support housing, retail, and office space. The hub would include a "state-of-the-art transportation center with a direct connection to the airport" and connections to MTS Trolley and rail services, and bus routes.

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Though, what that facility looks like before shovels hit the ground hasn't been revealed.

The project could potentially run an estimated $3.8 to $4.7 billion, according to City News Service. Some of that funding could come from the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority, which signed a 10-year agreement with airlines to fund airport public transportation.

In September 2019, SANDAG officials and then-Navy Secretary Richard Spencer signed a memorandum of understanding to explore their visions for the 72-acre site off Interstate 5.

Currently the site is home to more than 5,000 personnel, including Naval cybersecurity and information officials with Naval Information Warfare Systems Command. A portion of the World War II-era complex is also used for lab and storage space.