The developer behind the planned 100-acre Chandler 202 Auto Park says his project is on schedule with the first car dealership set to open by the end of year.
Big Two Toyota-Scion, currently in Mesa, broke ground on a 15-acre facility Thursday that is set to open by December. Executives with the company said they hope the dealership’s amenities, such as a massage parlor, barber shop, cafe, manicurist and Zen garden, will entice would-be customers to the south Chandler location.
Marty DeRito, who is developing the auto park and also plans to build a mixeduse project across the street, said he expects the newly expanded Loop 202 to bring plenty of customers to both projects.
“Loop 202 and Gilbert (Road) is going to be the next I-10 and Ray Road,” he said.
City officials say ongoing construction on Gilbert Road from Pecos Road south to the freeway should be complete by April.
The stretch of road is jammed daily with traffic coming to and from the freeway.
“I got here in no time on the freeway, it was great right up to this point,” said Chandler Mayor Boyd Dunn while gesturing toward traffic backed up by construction work along Gilbert Road.
All but 12 of the 100 acres at the northwest corner of Loop 202 and Gilbert Road have been sold to car dealerships expected to all be in place in the next two years, DeRito said.
The auto park is also expected to have Cadillac-Hummer-Saab, Nissan, Honda and Mazda dealers.
The Toyota-Scion dealership will be among the first of its kind with added amenities designed to make it a “destination shopping experience,” said general manager Wally Henkel.
“Everybody knows that typically people dread the car-buying experience or going to the car dealers for service,” Henkel said.
“We want to create a situation where the customer looks forward to going to the car dealership.”