Studio E Breaks Ground on Mesa Commons in San Diego

Studio E Architects is happy to announce that construction on Mesa Commons – our 78-unit affordable family housing project for San Diego’s College Area community – is officially underway! A groundbreaking ceremony for the project, hosted by client Palm Communities, was held on-site earlier this month, and included speeches from Rick Gentry of the San Diego Housing Commission and members of the Palm Communities team.

Mesa Commons Groundbreaking

Groundbreaking at Mesa Commons, San Diego

Featuring a mix of two- and three-story buildings on El Cajon Boulevard near San Diego State University, Mesa Commons will enliven a long-vacant 4.08 acre parcel along the Boulevard’s edge and provide much-needed affordable housing for families in Mid-City San Diego. The community will serve large families making between 30 and 60 percent of area median income – the equivalent of $24,200 to $48,360 per year for a household of four – with monthly rents varying from $542 to $1,253 depending on applicant income, household size, and apartment square footage.

Bldg G South

Street-Fronting Community Building at Mesa Commons, San Diego

With façades of alternating horizontal and vertical masses, an artfully-varied materials palette, and low-sloping roofs behind crisp parapets, Mesa Commons projects a warm, contemporary urban feel to the street. The project provides a point of transition between the commercial & retail development along El Cajon Boulevard and the older single-family residential neighborhoods to the north and west of the site. As such, the project’s site design takes care to reduce and humanize the perimeter building scale, and conceal parking from view.

Bldg F West_300

Typical Three-Story Residential Building at Mesa Commons, San Diego

Within the site boundaries, the development’s thirteen residential buildings are arranged to create a system of connected open spaces that encourage resident circulation and invite use of the project’s common areas and amenities. These include a fitness center, computer room, picnic areas and tot lots on-site. Off-site, the list of amenities continues – as Mesa Commons boasts a prime location just a short walk from shopping, restaurants, and public parks.

Site Plan

Site Plan of Mesa Commons, San Diego

All Studio E projects begin with sustainability as a guiding principle, and Mesa Commons is no exception. The project was designed to conform to GreenPoint Rated Multifamily Guidelines, incorporating such features as: a photovoltaic system designed to offset 50% of the project’s energy consumption; Energy Star appliances; water-saving plumbing fixtures; fluorescent lighting, energy-efficient windows with low-E glazing; a “cool” roof; and low VOC, formaldehyde-free, & recycled construction materials. These measures combine to create a community that will exceed California Title 24 requirements by a projected 25% when construction is completed in May 2014.

Stay tuned to this space for future updates on construction progress and the grand opening celebration! For more on Mesa Commons, as well as a look at a number of other projects currently on-the-boards, click here.

This entry was posted in Affordable Housing, Architecture, Sustainable+Green and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Studio E Breaks Ground on Mesa Commons in San Diego

  1. Beverly Manson says:

    Please send more information on this project and inform me when applications process will begin interested in 2-3 bedroom. What date is project expected to be ready?

  2. Georgiana says:


    I’ve browsed different websites and several different projected dates of completion keep coming up. The big discrepancy seems to be whether it will be May 2014 and May 2015. Is it possible to get clarification on that? Thanks in advance!

  3. Georgiana says:

    Thanks for your quick response Josh. Could you guide me in the right direction if I wanted to find out when they are starting to take applications or hold interviews? Or if you knew the answers, I’d appreciate it!

  4. Danno Williams says:

    I have been on the list for almost a year, but my phone number has changed and I was wondering if my place will change? Thank you for your time.

    • josh says:

      Hello Danno,

      Contact Palm Communities at 866-936-6569 – they should be able to help you out with leasing information.

      Best of luck!


  5. Samuel says:

    I applied over the phones two weeks ago – I don’t know if you got it or not.
    I did it again online. I am wondering if you got it?
    Really, I am very interested – can I get more information please? Thank you so much your time.


    • josh says:

      Hello Samuel,

      Contact Palm Communities at 866-936-6569 – they should be able to help you out.

      Best of luck!


  6. Odessa Walker says:

    Good Afternoon,

    Can you tell me when did the interest list open up, was it in 2013 or this year, the reason I asked when I drove by the construction site there was no number listed and I drove by a few weeks after and a number to be added to the interest was listed, does that mean that the interest list started once the number was put up or has it been open since 2013? I just want to know what my chances are because I didn’t even know that these affordable homes were even being built unfortunately. I’m very interested and mesa commons will be a great place for my two kids and me. I have called the 866 # and left a message and I also sent a message via the website a couple of weeks ago and I haven’t received any correspondence. Can you answer one or any of my questions?

    Ms. Walker

    • josh says:

      Hello Ms. Walker,

      Unfortunately, we don’t have the answers to your questions – we are only the architects for this community and are not involved with operations or leasing. The company that owns and manages Mesa Commons is Palm Communities, and if you have already contacted them by phone (at 866-936-6569) and via their website ( ), and are not getting a response, I might suggest stopping by the leasing trailer on the north side of the site, on Catoctin Drive at 64th Street.

      Good luck,


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *