As SGPA celebrates our 50th year in business, we reflect back on the projects that lead us to this point.  We have highlighted each decade of our history with a sampling of significant projects within those years. These projects have not only shaped who we are as a firm, but also shaped our individuals. SGPA was founded in 1969 when Donald Schoell, Eugene Geritz, Robert Paul, and Arthur Allard merged their architectural practices to form a new entity.  Since opening our doors, we’ve designed an integral part of the Southern California and Bay Area landscape, providing places for people to live, gather, learn, and heal.

At SGPA, leaders and specialists do not stand above the fray—they dive deep into each project, adding depth to the youthful and dynamic teams they lead. This combined expertise forms an unshakable foundation for both our relationships and our designs. 

In the 1970s, SGPA was just starting out and carving our niche into the retail world.  With a large portion of our projects right in our back yard, Mission Valley.  One of our early projects was the design of our current office building at Mission Grove. 


In the 1980s, the following projects were significant to our history:

Uptown District

Located in Hillcrest, Uptown District was the city’s first successful transformation of an abandoned commercial Building into the mixed-use, focal point of the neighborhood.

Marina Village

Master planning of 200 acres in Alameda including the adaptive reuse of 170,000 SF concrete warehouse into a mixed-use development.

Hazard Center

Located on one of the last undeveloped parcels in Mission Valley, Hazard Center incorporated linkages from the surrounding developments to walking, shopping, and dining areas.


In the 1990s, the following projects were significant to our history:

Casa Norte

Casa Norte was an addition to a historic oceanfront senior community in La Jolla featuring 39 units, lounges, beauty parlors, and public gathering spaces.

San Diego International Airport

Serving as the Executive Architect, this mega project included a 320,000 SF expansion of the west terminal with new ticketing concourse, baggage system, restaurants, and 8 new gates.

Hacienda Crossing

Woven together with clear vistas and tree-lined throughways, Hacienda Crossings included a 21-screen state of the art theater, retail, restaurants, and a 7-story hotel.


In the 2000s, the following projects were significant to our history:

Higher Education at San Ysidro

The expanded facility provides the opportunity for a greater number of students to enroll in programs focused on mainstreaming recent immigrants.

Jack London Gateway

With close proximity to the West Oakland BART station, this 30 year-old retail center was revitalized with a new retail tenant and 60 affordable senior living units.

Seacrest Katzin Residence

This memory care residence was designed to emulate a neighborhood with a homelike feel. An abundance of soft natural lighting was incorporated with indoor/outdoor spaces, activity areas, and gardens.


In the 2010s, the following projects were significant to our history:

Waterfront Park

This Park transformed vast parking lots on the County of San Diego’s historic waterfront property into the most significant green space downtown, becoming the long-awaited “front porch.”

SDSU South Campus Plaza

Based on Statistics showing that students who stay on campus thrive academically and socially, This plaza provides convenient and attractive retail/restaurant options on campus.

Embark Apartments

In addition to providing Veterans and their families with a comfortable home, Embark includes access to on-site community spaces, retail, and social services.


We look forward to the future of SGPA, and what the next 50 years will bring. 

Today, SGPA consists of more than 50 professionals across three offices in San Diego, San Francisco, and Fresno California. 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 these changes by keeping its focus on what’s important: enriching life through design.

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