SGPA Architecture and Planning welcomes James Connelly to the firm as its new Director of Retail for its San Diego Office. Mr. Connelly’s appointment is an important addition to SGPA’s core retail studio. Mr. Connelly brings over 30 years of project experience with hundreds of retail and mixed-use developments across the West.

“With the resurgence of retail projects in the last couple years, our volume in retail center repositioning, mixed-use and urban infill projects are growing at a fast pace. We are thrilled to have Jim with his wealth of experience to help us manage that growth.” —Keith Pittsford, Principal and managing director of SGPA San Diego.

After attending Arizona State University and the Southern California Institute of Architecture, Jim began his career in California. He advanced his career through Principal and director roles at San Diego’s office of Nadel Architects and MCG, as well as GKK in Orange County.

Jim’s portfolio highlights include:
  • The Forum Shops – A long-range repositioning effort for a lifestyle center in Carlsbad, California which led to a record sale price for a lifestyle center.
  • Boulevards at South Bay in Carson – A 157 acre, 1.2M SF, $500M horizontal mixed-use project on a landfill in Carson, California.
  • Winrock Market Center – A 168 acre, $350M horizontal mixed-use project in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

As the Director of Retail at SGPA, Jim will oversee development projects with significant retail components for SGPA’s San Diego office. Jim is a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers and a California registered Architect. He is passionate about working with creative people in order to seek the very best results for our clients.

About SGPA Architecture and Planning

Forty-eight years ago, SGPA was founded when Donald Schoell, Eugene Geritz, Robert Paul and Arthur Allard merged their architectural practices to form a new entity. Since opening its doors, the firm has designed an integral part of the Southern California and Bay Area landscape, providing places for thousands of people to shop, gather, learn, and heal.

Today, SGPA consists of 59+ people across two offices in San Diego and San Francisco. The collaborative technologies that allow us to function as one team across time and distance have expanded the scope of SGPA’s work immensely. We believe the ever-evolving marketplace will continue to change over the next few decades, especially as densification and mixed-use become more viable and desirable. SGPA aims to meet the changes by keeping its focus on what’s important: creating places that enrich daily life.

Additional information can be found at

Posted in: Announcements Retail