Demolition of the former Motorola plant at Dobson and Broadway roads is under way, and the Mesa City Council is expected to give the go-ahead Monday for a new planned development at the site.
The 35-year-old factory was a great semiconductor plant but isn’t good for much of anything else, said Cooper Sutherland, a real-estate analyst for developers Lincoln Property Co. In its place will be a new industrial park, he said.
The City Council is set to approve planning and zoning requests required for the development of 11 buildings ranging in size from 40,000 square feet to 100,000 square feet.
Stores, offices and showrooms will likely move into buildings closest to Broadway, with industrial and warehouse businesses setting up shop in back. Construction is set to start early next year.
The land is attractive for redevelopment because it’s close to interchanges on loops 101 and 202 and U.S. 60, developers have told the Tribune.
Motorola, which operated at the site for more than three decades, ended microchip manufacturing at the site in late 2002.
The high-tech campus employed upwards of 2,000 people.
Sutherland said it’s impossible to know how many of those jobs will be replaced by the technological, warehouse, retail or other businesses that could move in, as some businesses require lots of space and few people, while with others the reverse is true.
The 72-acre site was purchased by Broadway 101 Venture LLC, a partnership of Pacific Realty, a real estate investment group; Lincoln Property Co., a Dallas-based developer; and RREEF America, a real estate advisory company owned by Deutsche Bank Group.
Dave Ritchins, co-chairman of the Mesa Grande Community Alliance representing northwest Mesa neighborhoods, said there hasn’t been any local opposition to the site’s redevelopment.
"It’s always been industrial, so I think people understood the importance of keeping employment there," he said.