The last large plot of privately owned property along US 60 in Mesa has been sold.
Lee & Associates Arizona, a commercial real estate agency, said a 70-acre parcel at the northwest corner of Signal Butte Road and US 60 had been sold for $12.7 million to Bela Flor by an entity of Prudential.
The mixed-use site includes a half mile of US 60 frontage with a full diamond interchange, making it a prime location with easy access from the freeway, explained Lee & Associates Principal Brent Moser.
“The freeway visibility is very exceptional. If you look along US 60, there aren’t any large, privately owned pieces of land left,” he said. “Everything you see is owned by the state land department.”
“And it’s not a simple process to purchase a state piece; it has to go through an auction and bidding process,” he added.
The parcel also has a full traffic signal at Signal Butte and Hampton Avenue.
The development was originally planned as a Target-anchored shopping center with a mix of pads and other small shops but plans fell-through last minute.
Because of this, the parcel already has some built-in infrastructure, explained Moser, calling that a bonus.
“As things were falling apart with the national economy, right at end of the cycle of 2007 and 2008, once they [the previous buyer] got the infrastructure in, they decided not to build the project,” he said.
Now, the site is being repositioned as a mixed-use site with opportunities for retail, high-density residential, office, medical and hospitality.
The portion of land also has the upper hand in terms of its adjacency to other vibrant businesses and happenings, the principal added.
The development is surrounded by a Kohl’s, Walmart, Home Depot, Marriott Residence Inn, Mountain Vista Hospital, Sprouts, IHOP, Hobby Lobby, Firehouse Subs and Kneaders.
It’s also projected to be near the upcoming Grande Vita, a BioCity campus designed to provide luxury spaces where seniors can “age in place” while also having access to top-notch medical services.
“I think it’s impossible to find a property where there’s a million feet of retail already in place adjacent to it,” he said. “There are a lot of elements in place that make this a strong development site.”
Councilman Kevin Thompson, who represents District 6, told the East Valley Tribune that he is excited for the potential that this sale can bring to the district.
He hopes this parcel not only will attract a largely commercial retail base, he said, but also will fit cohesively with the rest of the city’s aesthetic.
“What I hope is that we will continue to push for the employment corridors and employment area,” he said. “Irregardless, one thing I’ll always continue to push for is quality because I think that’s what our citizens deserve – quality construction that doesn’t look mismatched.”
“I’m just hopeful that everything blends together and looks like a master-planned development at the end of day,” he continued. “And not just a hodgepodge of stuff.”
The area’s characteristics have seen quite the transformation over the years.
With nothing but the Mesa Market Place flea market marking the region a decade or so ago, the area between US 60 and Baseline along Signal Butte is now densely commercialized – complete with an IMAX theater.
Moser said he thinks the sale is just another sign of east Mesa’s mushrooming growth.
“I think it represents that the real estate market is back – it’s been over a decade since we’ve seen this kind of activity,” he said.
“A project like this supports everything in place and kind of makes this a destination for this portion of the East Valley.”
Construction is expected to begin around the end of the year and will take about four to five years to complete.