San Diego, already known for its Navy and Marine Corps presence, showcased its technology, innovation and academics in a 39-page report submitted to the U.S. Army on May 10.
San Diego is one of 15 cities being considered for the Army Futures Command headquarters.
The newly formed group will take the lead in next-generation combat, advanced weaponry, and intellectual modernization.
"They want to be connected with people who want to help them look out into the future and create an Army that's going to be responsive to the technological challenges," said Randy Bogle, Executive Director at San Diego Military Advisory Council.
A four-star general will lead the command, which will initially consist of 500 civilian and military personnel and will not include ground forces.
In its proposal, San Diego identified four potential sites for the new headquarters: Kearny Mesa, Downtown, Sorrento Valley-Torrey Pines Mesa, and Uptown-Mission Valley.
In asking for bids, the Army requested some very specific information about the local emergency response times, transportation options, veterans' outreach programs and quality of life.
"The challenge is, which we talk about all the time is, which the city is very familiar with, and so is the military, is the housing and the need for additional, affordable housing here," explained Bogle.
The bid, prepared by the City of San Diego's Economic Development Department and the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corp., stated San Diego as having "the largest concentration of military assets in the world, the largest federal military workforce in the country and the third-highest population of veterans in America."
The other contenders for the Futures Command home base are Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, Raleigh, San Francisco and Seattle.
The U.S. Army is expected to narrow down the list to four possibilities.
Those cities will get in-person visits before a final selection is made.
The new command is expected to start operations this year, possibly as early as this summer.