Chandler Price Road Corridor developer seeks changes to tenant policy

The Republic | azcentral.com

San Diego-based developer Douglas Allred Company is attempting to modify the language that guides development in the South Price Road Employment Corridor in order to construct multitenant buildings on about 65 acres just south of Willis Road.

If approved, the change would be the first shift in South Price Corridor policy in about two decades, according to city planner Kevin Mayo. It also could serve as a rough draft for a broader revision to Price Corridor development guidelines, for which the city is enlisting a consultant’s help.

The South Price Corridor currently is reserved for specific types of “single employment users … in campus-like settings on parcels generally not less than 15 acres.” The minor General Plan text amendmentAllred is seeking would strike the word “single” and instead “generally reserve” its parcel “for large/significant size users.”

“We’re not changing the concept of being a campus environment,” said Mike Curley, who is representing Allred. “The only thing we’re seeking is to be able to take some of these buildings and still require the larger users, but having the ability to have two, three or four users per building.”

Curley said that flexibility is essential because “if you take the 15-acre, single-user requirement, what that extrapolates to is about a 180,000-square-foot building, and there is a very, very finite number of users in the marketplace that (need that).”

Planning and economic-development officials agreed, saying at a recent Planning and Zoning Commission hearing that development in the South Price Corridor has slowed as policy language has failed to adapt to changing business needs.

“As we’re climbing out of this (downturn) … we know that businesses are doing more with less,” Mayo said.

Economic-development director Christine Mackay cautioned against judging a company’s investment in a community by whether it needs 15 acres.

If the text amendment and a subsequent rezoning request were to be approved, Allred plans to invest more than $30million into the parcel south of Willis. Improvements would include remediation of the dairy that formerly occupied the site; installation of curbs, gutters and sidewalks, and landscaping.

“Allred is making this investment in the corridor because it wants to create an impressive, attractive and significant sense of arrival for corporations and businesses who are considering locating in Chandler,” Curley said in a letter to Mayor Jay Tibshraeny.

Curley estimated the development would take seven to eight years. The company is working to finish Allred Park Place, a series of multitenant buildings at the northeastern corner of Price and Willis, where Price Corridor development guidelines are slightly less restrictive.

The City Council is set to review the request at its Dec. 13 meeting.

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