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SethAZ Apr 14, 2010 2:51 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by nickkoto
Is that affiliated with the Kampai restaurant on Bell Rd and 35th(-ish) street? I'd take that.

I can only think of one sushi joint on Mill and it's not a very good one.
Yeah, I think it is the same as the place on Bell. I've never been though.

Ra has a pretty decent happy hour but I've never been a sushi fan. Maybe this new place will change my mind.

Totally unrelated, is anyone else on foursquare? Because if you're the Mayor of Cartel Coffee in Tempe or in Phoenix, you get free cappuccino when you go there.

mwadswor Apr 23, 2010 11:11 PM

http://www.azcentral.com/community/t...wers-0424.html

Quote:

Centerpoint condominium towers in Tempe listed for sale

by Angelique Soenarie - Apr. 23, 2010 03:34 PM
The Arizona Republic

Early next week the mostly-built Centerpoint condominium towers in downtown Tempe will be listed for sale by CB Richard Ellis.

The condominium project recently failed to sell at a foreclosure auction, which forced Peoria-based lender, ML Manager LLC to take over the property.

A price will not be listed, but offers will be accepted for the property, said Mark Winkleman, ML Manager chief operating officer
. Already, he said there has been interest from all over the country.

"Its attracted very prominent and well capitalized buyers in the country," he said. "We're approaching 200 inquires and with zero marketing from around the country."

Five years ago the Centerpoint development, which began near Maple and Sixth streets, was to include 375 condos, an upscale retail plaza, fine dining and a winery. Tempe City Council waived height requirements to approve the 22- and 30-story buildings. But now local stakeholders see the vacant towers an unsightly problem.

Winkleman said the possibility of a buyer tearing down the towers to develop something else is unlikely. He said the development could become high-end rental property, student housing or assisted living.

Winkleman said the inability to sell the condominiums at the recent foreclosure auction "was merely the lender foreclosing. We were expecting the bid to be substantially higher."

He said the minimum bid started at $8 million and could have gone up to $135 million, which was Mortgages Ltd.'s loan to Tempe Land Co. LLC, the former developer of Centerpoint. Tempe Land is a subsidiary of Tempe-based Avenue Communities LLC.

Winkleman expects the development will sell in the next 45 to 60 days.

"Unfortunately, it won't recover all of it," Winkleman said. "No one has suffered worse losses than our investors. It's a tough situation."
NICE! Let's hope the CBRE guy isn't just blowing smoke and something actually, finally happens with these.

Don B. May 4, 2010 7:23 PM

^ Here's to hoping they sell to somebody. Apartments are probably the best thing for them.

Arizona Mills aquarium set for May 14 debut

http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2010/05/04/20100504arizona-mills-sea-life-aquarium.html#reply19997858#ixzz0mzRS834B

The Valley may be hundreds of miles from the nearest ocean, but in less than two weeks, desert dwellers will be face to face with tiger sharks, eels, rays, sea horses, an octopus and thousands of neon tropical fish.

On May 14, Tempe's Arizona Mills mall will open its doors to the Sea Life Arizona Aquarium, an underwater world that will house more than 5,000 marine creatures. Many have arrived during the past several days. On Monday, a school of spotted yellow fish welcomed the aquarium's newest arrival, a gray female tiger shark with black spots...

--don

mwadswor May 12, 2010 9:40 PM

Quote:

Tempe Town Lake complex developers discuss bankruptcy

by Dianna M. Náñez - May. 12, 2010 02:13 PM
The Arizona Republic

The developers for Grigio Tempe Town Lake, an upscale apartment complex on the north shore of the lake, are trying to dispel residents' fears over a bankruptcy filing on the property.

Opened in 2008, Gray Development Group marketed their Grigio property as the Valley's most luxurious apartment. It also was the most expensive, with monthly rents on the snazziest units ranging from $2,200 to $6,000. Studios rented for about $900.

Residents were sent a letter Monday informing them of the bankruptcy filing. Leases, services and maintenance of the property would not be affected, wrote Chief Executive Officer David Vergeyle.

In an interview with The Arizona Republic Tuesday, Brian Kearney, Gray's chief operating officer, said filing for Chapter 11 reorganization this week was the developer's only choice after the primary construction lender, Ohio-based Key Bank National Association, sold the promissory note on Gray's loan. The loan was about $63 million.

"The main thing we want residents to know . . . is this will have no impact on their daily lives," he said. "Nor will there be any impact to any other property."

He said the bankruptcy centers on a dispute with its lender.

"To protect our position we felt we needed to file our petition," he said.

Grigio's 523 units are about 90 percent full. The complex is popular with Arizona State University students and others who are attracted to the properties lake setting and concierge services, which include dry cleaning, meals and maid service.

"Our motto is, 'Your wish, our pleasure,' and we mean it; we offer, in an apartment setting, almost any service a resort has,'" said general manager Liz Schloss when the apartment opened in the fall of 2008.

Residents' reaction to the bankruptcy was mixed.

Mallory Ring was walking her dog Archie Wednesday at property. The ASU student has one year on her lease.

"I'm not really worried," she said. "They sent us an e-mail and a letter. They're on top of things. If they hadn't said anything, then I would have been worried they were keeping it a secret for a reason."

Melissa Valencia, a Tempe native who graduated from ASU this week, said she is relieved her lease is up in a month.

"Things just have been going down. There were a lot of services they promised us that never happened. They had a coffee shop that closed," she said. "I'm not staying here. This letter was it for me. I'd tell people to try and move out now."

Gray operates 11 properties in the Valley including Grigio Metro near Apache Boulevard and McClintock Road.

Chris Salomone, Tempe's community development manager, said Tuesday that in light of the bankruptcy, Tempe has spoken with Gray officials about a $10 million debt the developer owes Tempe.

"We're talking about settling up those obligations," Salomone said. "They've been communicating with us so we don't expect any issues with being paid."
http://www.azcentral.com/community/t...ankruptcy.html

Would a bankruptcy here affect their other properties? The Grigio complex at Apache and McClintock looks awesome, I would hate to see it become derelict like Centerpoint.

Urban Rising May 13, 2010 3:23 PM

This should not affect their other properties.

I am assuming since this is a Chapter 11 reorg. that Gray is using this as a ploy to delay a foreclosure proceeding while renegotiating terms on the current loan for the property. Multifamily properties have seen a significant decrease in values over the last 2 years and short sales and foreclosures are currently very common in this segment due to depressed rents and high current loans. Don't be surprised if you don't here much about this going forward as the banks and developer will continue discussions behind closed doors. Unfortunately this is usually just a typical first step to force the banks to actually start negotiating.

mwadswor May 13, 2010 7:51 PM

http://www.azcentral.com/community/t...-raitings.html

Quote:

Tempe sees silver lining with higher bond ratings

by Dianna M. Náñez - May. 13, 2010 10:41 AM
The Arizona Republic

Last week, amid discussions of some of the worst budget troubles Tempe has ever seen, City Manager Charlie Meyer said he had some "good news" for the council.

In the midst of devastating discussions about the budget, Moody's Investors Service has preliminarily moved Tempe to a triple A bond rating, he said. He noted that is a coveted rating.

The Aaa rating is an upgrade of Tempe's previous Aa1 rating from Moody's. The rating is tied to the interest rates Tempe pays on the bonds issued to fund capital projects. When a city sells bonds it aims for the lowest interest rate possible in order to keep the payments as low as possible.

A city's bond rating is like a person's credit rating: The better it is, the less interest they'll have to pay on a loan.

Fitch Ratings and Standard & Poor's ratings have maintained the city's AAA bond rating. The Moody's upgrade makes it the first time Tempe has secured three AAA ratings from the leading investment-analysis companies.

Meyer said Moody's was impressed by Tempe's comprehensive budget process.

Tempe City Council has worked since last year to develop a plan to cut $33.7 million from its fiscal 2010-11 General Fund budget. It is also looking to virtually freeze capital spending.

In total, Tempe's finance manager has recommended deferring $109.5 million in capital improvement projects until the economy improves.

Meyer said Moody's told city officials that the most important factor in its ratings decision is "council's willingness to address our financial problems and address them realistically, and come up with plans to keep our budget balanced and make it sustainable.

"It's just awfully good news that in this kind of (economic) context when you'd fear that they would be looking negatively at cities in general, that they've been able to . . . upgrade us to triple A bond rating, which is the highest bond rating that you can get."

Mayor Hugh Hallman congratulated the council for their work on the budget and the rating.

AJphx May 14, 2010 3:07 AM

This was today, Thursday May 13. The ISTB IV science building at ASU seems to be moving full speed ahead.

http://lh6.ggpht.com/_o9mnJUciFkY/S-...0/IMAG0017.jpg

http://lh6.ggpht.com/_o9mnJUciFkY/S-...0/IMAG0018.jpg

http://lh5.ggpht.com/_o9mnJUciFkY/S-...0/IMAG0016.jpg

and here was the town lake waterfall

http://lh3.ggpht.com/_o9mnJUciFkY/S-...0/IMAG0020.jpg

Phxguy May 14, 2010 4:01 AM

and here was the town lake waterfall

http://lh3.ggpht.com/_o9mnJUciFkY/S-...0/IMAG0020.jpg[/QUOTE]

In this shot, I wonder how long they've been releasing water.

SethAZ May 14, 2010 5:58 PM

water has been flowing over it for a long time. i walk my dogs over there almost every day and i don't really remember the last time i saw it with no water being released.

I didn't know ASU had started construction already. I'll have to go check that out now

ciweiss Jun 11, 2010 8:53 PM

New development on Apache being built. Apache Trails ASL Project.

http://wsmarch.com/project.php?MA=7&PROJ=41

This 75-unit tax-credit project creates a campus for Arizona Deaf Seniors who use American Sign Language (ASL) as their primary form of communication. Due to a tight budget, this project is designed primarily of wood frame construction with stucco.

The project includes a master campus plan for a dynamic infill site along the new light rail line in Tempe, Arizona. The master plan includes the 75-unit four-story apartment building, as well as a 60 unit Cooperative building to the east. A large community room with kitchen on the first floor will serve deaf seniors from throughout the Valley of the Sun. Each four-story building incorporates retail and community spaces on the ground level, and special deaf communication systems.

ciweiss Jun 11, 2010 8:58 PM

APACHE TRAILS
The Apache ASL Trails Project has commenced construction. The project
is a 75-unit Low Income Housing Tax Credit Deaf Senior Project. This has
been an ongoing project for several years, with the original tax credit award by
the Arizona Department of Housing in 2007. Cardinal Capital, the developer
estimates construction will take approximately 13 months, with an anticipated
project opening in July 2011.

http://www.tempe.gov/comdev/WeeklyUpdate/11JUN10.pdf

dtnphx Jun 16, 2010 11:40 PM

Lender fields bids for Centerpoint condo towers
by Catherine Reagor, The Arizona Republic

Two years ago, Arizona's largest private real-estate lender, Mortgages Ltd., was forced into bankruptcy. Its high-profile and expensive projects stalled shortly after that, as did the lender's dividends to investors.

ML Holdings, successor to Mortgages Ltd., is now taking offers on one of the biggest developments in its portfolio, the Centerpoint Condominiums in downtown Tempe.

Proceeds from the sale will go to pay back the development's many investors.

At least 75 large real-estate firms have expressed serious interest in the two towers, said Mark Winkleman, chief operating officer for ML Holdings.

Those companies have signed confidentiality agreements and provided ML with information on how they would finance the deal. More than 300 firms initially asked for information on the condo high-rises.

Tyler Anderson and Sean Cunningham of CB Richard Ellis are marketing the condo project, which ML Holdings foreclosed on a few months ago.

The 22-story tower is nearly complete, while much more work is needed on the project's 30-story tower. The towers are being sold "as is."

Other Mortgages Ltd. real estate that ML Holdings is now trying to sell:

• About 1,680 acres in Pinal County.

• Two central Phoenix townhouse sites with some partially built houses at 121 W. Maryland Ave. and 802 E. Missouri Ave.

• Also in Phoenix, partially built commercial buildings and some vacant land along Van Buren and 48th streets, a 42-unit apartment complex at 4540 E. Belleview St., and 5 acres of vacant land at McKinley and 44th streets.

• About 510 acres of vacant land in Eloy.

In March, ML Holdings sold the 21 brick mansions in central Phoenix called Chateaux on Central for $7 million.

The homes, nearly complete, with elevators and wine cellars, were marketed in 2007 for more than $2 million a piece.

Mesa land

Mesa is trying to sell 11,000 acres it owns in Pinal County to fund a new training field for the Chicago Cubs.

The city has hired Scottsdale-based land brokerage Nathan & Associates to sell the site, southeast of Coolidge along Arizona 87.

Mesa bought the Pinal land for $30 million in 1985.

ciweiss Jun 18, 2010 1:53 AM

http://www.tempe.gov/comdev/WeeklyUpdate/18JUN10.pdf


FROM HERE
Vulcan Real Estate, the real estate
investment arm of Paul G. Allen’s
Vulcan Inc., expanded its holdings with
the acquisition of the Tempe Gateway
building on Third and Mill, representing
their first investment purchase outside
the Seattle market. Completed in 2009
by Opus West, the eight-story, 260,000
sq ft Class A office building was
purchased for $35 million.

mwadswor Jun 18, 2010 3:48 PM

http://www.azcentral.com/community/t...t-tension.html

Quote:

[/b]Landlord-tenant tension builds up on Mill Avenue in Tempe[/b]
By Derek Quizon - Jun. 17, 2010

Nahom Herzel has little patience for underperforming tenants. The owner of four buildings near Sixth Street and Mill Avenue, Herzel's tenants include such downtown Tempe mainstays as Campus Corner, Mill Avenue Cue Club and Hippie Gypsy.

When tenants are not producing up to his standards, Herzel said, he applies "unspoken pressure." He becomes stricter about collecting rent on time and slaps penalties on business owners who don't comply.

"If you don't do well, I'll try to motivate you to leave," he said, noting that he was able to pressure Vietnamese restaurant Saigon Express to sell its business in 1998.

Herzel is one of the landlords of downtown Tempe, which is one of the most highly-sought places to do business in the Valley. The landlords have differing opinions and attitudes, but recent closures have some business owners and managers complaining about the way some landlords do business.

Karina Klingbiel, manager of the Campus Corner store near Sixth Street, said many landlords in the area are insensitive to how businesses, struggling because of the economy, may need rent relief in order to stay afloat. This, she said, is the cause of many closures along Mill Avenue.

"They'd rather empty their space than lower their rent," Klingbiel said.

Downtown Tempe Community officials estimate the average rent is $20 per square foot, although Mill Avenue landlord Vic Linoff puts it closer to $30 per square foot but said he charges "substantially under" that amount.

Herzel does not like to disclose his rent, but said he charges substantially higher than the average, which he estimates is between $30 and $40, because of his location in the heart of the district.

The recession has prompted many businesses, not only in Tempe but across the Valley, to ask landlords to lower rent or make other adjustments to help them stay afloat.

Rick Murphy, a real-estate specialist with CB Ellis, told The Arizona Republic last year that he estimated 80 percent of retail tenants in the Valley were asking landlords for some form of relief. It has been a particular problem in space-deprived downtown areas.

"During the recession, a lot of businesses have been asking for re-negotiated leases," said Casaundra Brown of Downtown Tempe Community. "But it's always an issue in a downtown."

The Library Bar and Grill may have been the latest victim of landlord-tenant tension in downtown Tempe. The bar closed last month after failure to re-negotiate the lease with landowners Cushman and Wakefield. General manager Jake Guzman did not want to talk much about the negotiations because he was considering re-entering a lease with Cushman and Wakefield for the same space.

He did recall negotiations with landowners over a lease renewal in McDuffy's, a defunct sports bar just off Mill Avenue he used to manage. It was not long after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, and sales were slumping. Guzman hoped the firm that owned the property would be sensitive to the fact that business was down and possibly lower his rent. Instead, he said, communications were stonewalled, a common tactic used by landlords in disagreement with tenants over rent.

"We didn't get a timely response from them," he said. "(Negotiations) came to a dead end."

But Dave Moschel, day manager at the Crave Café and Lounge, said lowering rents doesn't make financial sense for landowners, who know Mill Avenue is a prime location that will always attract interests from business owners. Why lower rent for a struggling business on Mill when other business owners will stand in line to take its place?

"You think they're going to keep (rent) that high if they're not assured not to have somebody leasing (the space)?" Moschel said. "The demand is still going to be high for that high-profile location."


Not all landlords have a sink-or-swim view of doing business in downtown Tempe. Vic Linoff has a unique perspective because he has been in both roles. Linoff owned a used bookstore along Mill, Those Were the Days, which closed in 2008. Now he owns the Goodwin building, which houses a clothing boutique called Diva's and an ice-cream shop called Cookiez.

Linoff said the majority of landlords in downtown Tempe try their best to work with tenants who are seeing declining sales. He acknowledged that some are not very understanding of struggling businesses.

"There are some landlords who really don't care. If you rent today and can't pay tomorrow, they'll just get somebody else in," he said.

Linoff said landlords need to take an interest in cooperating with struggling businesses because high turnover only hurts businesses in the area, which are connected by customers they attract.

"Responsible landlords and tenants have to communicate effectively, and landlords need to be more sensitive to the current market, and, if need be, offer some flexibility," he said.

Gil Schmitt, who manages the Thirsty Dog convenience store and owns land in Phoenix, said he has mixed feelings about the situation.

Failing shops and restaurants are often replaced with vibrant, new businesses that create excitement and bring customers to the area. For example, national retailers like Jimmy John's, Five Guys Burgers and Fries and Dunkin' Donuts recently opened in downtown Tempe.

But Schmitt said he believes some landlords are less than willing to re-negotiate leases with struggling businesses. Landlords keep rents high because they think downtown Tempe is an unlimited "gold mine," he said, allowing them to charge unreasonable rent, even during a recession.

"That's been proven year after year after year in turnover," he said. "Turnover is unbelievably high . . . and it's higher than it's ever been."

Herzel said he is practicing good business standards and notes that many of his businesses, including Mill Avenue Cue Club and Campus Corner, have been there since the '90s. He may charge high rent, he said, but he stays away from luring tenants in with the promise of low rent and jacking up fees midlease, which was a problem reported by some tenants at Tempe Marketplace last year when maintenance fees quadrupled.

The area is highly sought and has high foot traffic, making it one of the best areas in the state to do business, which is why Herzel said he has little sympathy for businesses that don't do well in the area, recession or not.

"You have to be able to weather the storm," he said. "If you can't make it on Sixth and Mill, you can't make it anywhere else."
Helps explain a lot of the empty space on Mill.

ciweiss Jun 18, 2010 9:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mwadswor (Post 4882205)
http://www.azcentral.com/community/t...t-tension.html



Helps explain a lot of the empty space on Mill.

I read about that as well. I don't understand the philosophy of better to have empty buildings then get 10-20% less in rent. I've got a rental house and I would rather have $100-200 less then 0$. Perhaps there is a write off or something but I don't get it. Mill is looking serriously empty. The city really needs to think of some ways to bring people here though I guess it is mainly up to the owners. How about a monthly or weekly car show on Friday nights or art walk on first Fri. The compitition is higher than ever to bring people in. Maybe an art school and some gallerys can move into all the Centerpoint space. Tempe really needs to think outside the box or it will soon be a ghost town.

SunDevil Jun 19, 2010 12:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ciweiss (Post 4882756)
I read about that as well. I don't understand the philosophy of better to have empty buildings then get 10-20% less in rent. I've got a rental house and I would rather have $100-200 less then 0$. Perhaps there is a write off or something but I don't get it. Mill is looking serriously empty. The city really needs to think of some ways to bring people here though I guess it is mainly up to the owners. How about a monthly or weekly car show on Friday nights or art walk on first Fri. The compitition is higher than ever to bring people in. Maybe an art school and some gallerys can move into all the Centerpoint space. Tempe really needs to think outside the box or it will soon be a ghost town.

yeah, because it's not like downtown is right next to 50,000+ college kids who have money to spend and lots of time to waste.

ciweiss Jun 19, 2010 4:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SunDevil (Post 4882913)
yeah, because it's not like downtown is right next to 50,000+ college kids who have money to spend and lots of time to waste.

Ghost town might not be the best words to use but with the Library (one of my favs) and others closing they must be pushing 25% percent vacancy. I know there will always be traffic from ASU and visitors but there is a serious amount of empty buildings at the moment.

mwadswor Jun 19, 2010 6:18 PM

http://www.azcentral.com/community/t...west-sale.html

Quote:

Deal reached on sale of major Mill Ave. office building
Dianna M. Náñez - Jun. 18, 2010 06:39 PM
The Arizona Republic

There is hope for attracting more businesses to downtown Tempe following the sale this week of a major Mill Avenue office building that was put in foreclosure in 2009 after the Chapter 11 bankruptcy of the building's developer, Opus West Corp.

Vulcan Real Estate, the real estate investment arm of Paul Allen's Vulcan Inc., announced that it expanded its holdings with the purchase of the building. Allen cofounded Microsoft Inc. with Bill Gates. His business investments include real estate holdings in Seattle and the Portland Trail Blazers basketball team.

Allen paid an estimated $35 million for the Tempe building, which represents the company's first real estate investment outside the Seattle market, Tempe officials said. The building is considered an essential link between downtown Tempe and Town Lake.

"That building is just so vital to development downtown," said Kris Baxter of Tempe's community development department.

Tempe Gateway is a 260,000-square-foot building at Third Street and Mill Avenue, adjacent a light-rail station.

Tempe officials hope to see the eight-story building fill with retail and office businesses.
Nice. Here's hoping a Centerpoint deal's next :cheers:

Tempe_Duck Jun 24, 2010 7:45 AM

I haven't seen this posted yet. Looks like Tempe is trying to redevelop 8th St between Rural and McClintock. It actually looks really good. Four Peaks seems to be in favor of it from the tone of their newsletter.

Try this one, should be fixed:
http://www.tempe.gov/tim/Traffic/8thstreet.htm

PHX31 Jun 24, 2010 5:20 PM

/\ that link didn't work

ciweiss Jul 2, 2010 11:46 PM

http://azbigmedia.com/azre/new-market-mayjune-2010


Lakeside Medical Commons
Developer: Irgens Development Partners
Contractor: TBD
Architect: TBD
Size: 105,000 SF
Location: Scottsdale Rd. & Loop 202 in Tempe
Currently in pre-development stages, this project will feature a 10-story medical office building that includes a 5-story vertically integrated parking structure, with 4 stories of Class A office space on Tempe Town Lake. Estimated groundbreaking is scheduled for 4Q10. Brokerage firm is CB Richard Ellis.

SunDevil Jul 3, 2010 2:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ciweiss (Post 4898934)
http://azbigmedia.com/azre/new-market-mayjune-2010


Lakeside Medical Commons
Developer: Irgens Development Partners
Contractor: TBD
Architect: TBD
Size: 105,000 SF
Location: Scottsdale Rd. & Loop 202 in Tempe
Currently in pre-development stages, this project will feature a 10-story medical office building that includes a 5-story vertically integrated parking structure, with
4 stories of Class A office space on Tempe Town Lake. Estimated groundbreaking is scheduled for 4Q10. Brokerage firm is CB Richard Ellis.

whaaaaat? so 1/2 of the building will be a parking garage? are they going to sell parking space for ASU football games or something?

Leo the Dog Jul 6, 2010 12:05 PM

Is this at the old Club Rio lot?

combusean Jul 6, 2010 10:58 PM

Judging by the rendering in the article, I'd say yes.

ciweiss Jul 8, 2010 2:43 AM

More on the 2 new UOP buildings under construction.

http://southwest.construction.com/fe...wthSpurt-1.asp

The 34-year-old private education giant plans to soon occupy 439,070 sq ft inside two new midrise office and classroom buildings in Tempe in suburban Phoenix. Metro Commercial Properties, Tempe, is developing the build-to-suit project along with San Antonio-based USAA Real Estate Co.

The six- and 10-story buildings are going up on 11.33 acres inside the 170-acre mixed-use, master-planned Fountainhead Corporate Park near Priest Drive and Broadway Road. There is also a six-level, 1,885-space precast concrete parking structure. The concrete, post-tensioned, cast-in-place office buildings and accompanying garage are being built by Tempe-based Sundt Construction Inc., as are the tenant improvements.

“To be constructing a 440,000-sq-ft office project given the economic climate in Phoenix is extremely rare,” says Marty Hedlund, Sundt Southwest District manager. “It’s a testament to our performance in past projects for University of Phoenix and USAA Real Estate Co.”

One of those past projects for the university was Riverpoint Center in Phoenix. Riverpoint was awarded Best Office Building in Southwest Contractor’s Best of 2008 Arizona awards.

University of Phoenix, North America’s largest private education provider, has signed a long-term lease to occupy the buildings and garage in Tempe. Besides offering online education, the University of Phoenix, a unit of publicly traded Apollo Group Inc. (Nasdaq:APOL), offers high school, undergraduate and graduate-level programs in over 200 locations across 42 states.

Fountainhead Office Plaza “represents one of the few shovel-ready sites in the airport/north Tempe submarket that can accommodate this large University of Phoenix requirement,” Patrick Althoff, Metro Commercial Properties president, said in a statement. “The allowable site density, prime freeway visibility and proximity to existing University of Phoenix facilities make Fountainhead a logical location to facilitate the growth of the university.”

The $70-million project is located 4 mi southeast of the University of Phoenix’s headquarters. Construction began in October with the demolition of three existing single-story masonry office buildings built in the late 1970s and early 1980s.


The property, which fronts Interstate 10 near the Broadway Curve, has poor soil conditions due to its proximity to the usually dry Salt River.

To handle the problem, Sundt is placing 240 caissons up to 50 ft deep and 5 ft in diameter to stabilize the foundation. It additionally requires reconfiguring a 50,000-sq-ft lake, used for park irrigation, which sits between a 140-ft-high, 273,780-sq-ft building that faces perpendicular to a smaller 84-ft-tall, 165,290-sq-ft building.

“The architecture is a glass curtain wall façade with precast spandrels,” says Buck Yee, project architect with Tempe-based DAVIS. “It has a blue-tinted, low-energy glass that reduces heat gain and improves insulation.”

The project is seeking LEED gold. The buildings will have high-pressure, low-flow plumbing fixtures; variable air-distribution systems; and VOC-free glues, sealants and paints for improved indoor air quality.

Building debris is being recycled during construction, and building products have recycled content.

The 30,000 cu yds of concrete required for the project include 20% fly-ash. Sundt is self-performing the concrete work valued at $7 million.

“The primary reason for pursuing LEED was because the project is a long term investment,” Yee says. “It makes the resale of the building more marketable.”

About 100 workers will be onsite during the peak of construction activity. The project is expected to finish in fall 2011.

ciweiss Jul 8, 2010 3:20 AM

http://southwest.construction.com/so...hicCollege.asp

Construction Starts on Naturopathic College in Tempe. The Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine broke ground on the first phase of a 40,000-sq-ft medical center. The $1.9-million, initial 15,000-sq-ft phase will renovate a 25-year-old corporate office complex in downtown Tempe to be home to a six class rooms teaching space, a retail medicinary, community outreach clinic including 25 private office/exam rooms and a new hydrotherapy clinic. The concept and design phase started in late 2009 and on April 7, the groundbreaking and construction of the project began with general contractor Kitchell.

The design, by merzproject, a studio of Shepley Bulfinch, creates a healing and educational environment that represents the college’s philosophy and teaching methods based on nature and life in balance. Featuring a combination of light infused spaces throughout the facility, emphasis was put on nature and a healing environment represented through environmental conscious building materials, paired with architecture to assist the naturopathic principles.


Anyone have any ideas where this is at ???

bwonger06 Jul 8, 2010 3:50 AM

New Medical Center Update

After an extensive due diligence process of obtaining valuable input from all the constituents of the College, alumni and patients, the Kitchell-merzproject design-build team has melded everyone’s vision and created a remarkable, LEED certified, state-of-the-art naturopathic medical center to be housed in the 2164 E. Broadway building. The plan envisions, among other features, six classrooms, 25 exam rooms which include the hydrotherapy suite and a clinical integration study area. The project’s design team is creating a facility that espouses SCNM’s vision.

http://208.109.201.5/scnm_insider/is...#anchorborders

Nowhere near downtown Tempe...

mwadswor Jul 8, 2010 3:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bwonger06 (Post 4904284)
New Medical Center Update

After an extensive due diligence process of obtaining valuable input from all the constituents of the College, alumni and patients, the Kitchell-merzproject design-build team has melded everyone’s vision and created a remarkable, LEED certified, state-of-the-art naturopathic medical center to be housed in the 2164 E. Broadway building. The plan envisions, among other features, six classrooms, 25 exam rooms which include the hydrotherapy suite and a clinical integration study area. The project’s design team is creating a facility that espouses SCNM’s vision.

http://208.109.201.5/scnm_insider/is...#anchorborders

Nowhere near downtown Tempe...

Yeah, I used to live about a block away from there, that's almost to the 101 on Broadway. That's not even remotely close to DT Tempe by anyone's definition.

SethAZ Jul 9, 2010 5:16 AM

While hanging out on Mill Ave today I saw that something is going into the spot where Regions used to be. (6th and Mill.) It's owned by the people who own La Bocca across the street. It has the word "Tequila" in it. I like it already.

The sign had a website address on it but I don't remember what it was. This is all I could find...

http://www.urbanrealtyaz.com/Blog/Do...Bar_Tempe.html

AJphx Jul 10, 2010 11:17 PM

There is a big crane up on ASU campus now for the new science building. I'll get some photos.

nickkoto Jul 16, 2010 2:10 AM

I snapped a picture of the ITSB site at ASU today. It was totally the wrong time of day for taking pictures from that garage, so I just took this one from a well-sheltered portion of a stairwell.
http://img46.imageshack.us/img46/1567/itsbq.jpg
Not bad for a phone camera.

ciweiss Jul 16, 2010 5:20 PM

Thanks Nick. I did find some pics on the Sundt.com website. Not sure which building this is but they show two on their site. Biodesign institute building A and B.

http://www.sundt.com/projects

PHX31 Jul 16, 2010 5:56 PM

I'm having a hard time figuring out exactly where that building is going... and I went to ASU. Is it like the southeast corner of McCallister and Terrace?

Anyone know what's going on with the planned new sweet Business building?

bwonger06 Jul 16, 2010 6:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PHX31 (Post 4914732)
I'm having a hard time figuring out exactly where that building is going... and I went to ASU. Is it like the southeast corner of McCallister and Terrace?

Anyone know what's going on with the planned new sweet Business building?

Its going to be located in the lot just west of structure 2 (the rural parking structure).

Quote:

Originally Posted by ciweiss (Post 4914686)
Thanks Nick. I did find some pics on the Sundt.com website. Not sure which building this is but they show two on their site. Biodesign institute building A and B.

http://www.sundt.com/projects

Those two builds are already there. THis new building will be something brand new.

combusean Jul 17, 2010 6:19 AM

http://www.hdrcuh2a.com/#Our%20Work/...ISTB%20IV.aspx

has the render.

It's at the SE Corner of Terrace and McAllister, where Lot 44 used to be.

PHX31 Jul 17, 2010 2:43 PM

/\That's a pretty sweet building.. I'm a fan of most of ASU's newbuildings. They look sleek and a good kind of modern and functional. The campus has changed so much since i graduated in 2003.

HooverDam Jul 17, 2010 5:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PHX31 (Post 4915763)
I'm a fan of most of ASU's newbuildings.

Please tell me this doesn't include Barrett and the other monstrosities along Apache. What a horrible wall of brutality they built when that should've been a campus gateway.

ciweiss Jul 17, 2010 8:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HooverDam (Post 4915861)
Please tell me this doesn't include Barrett and the other monstrosities along Apache. What a horrible wall of brutality they built when that should've been a campus gateway.

Thats funny Hoover I was thinking the same thing. The school/class buildings look fantastic but the dorms look straight out of eastern block Russia. What is sad is these are the ones that are most visible aka Apache and Rural. I keep hoping they are not finished and they will add something appealing at some point. Hopefully they plant a bunch of trees or vines to cover these things...

nickkoto Jul 17, 2010 8:50 PM

I forgot to mention, the roof level of that Rural parking structure was closed because they're also installing more solar panels (the Tyler, Stadium, and Apache structures were done over the last few years, as well as some buildings). I think they've started on the Hayden library as well.

PHX31 Jul 18, 2010 4:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HooverDam (Post 4915861)
Please tell me this doesn't include Barrett and the other monstrosities along Apache. What a horrible wall of brutality they built when that should've been a campus gateway.

I didn't even think about those when I typed that. So yeah, it goes without saying those suck.

ciweiss Jul 19, 2010 1:58 AM

http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/loc...cc4c002e0.html

Developer sells Hayden Ferry Lakeside plot

The Hayden Ferry Lakeside property has been sold, in what is the third major land transaction to take place recently in Tempe’s Mill Avenue District.

The deal came just after the University Square block at University Drive and Myrtle Avenue changed hands, and weeks after Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen snapped up an eight-story office building.

The trio of sales coincides with an increase in leasing downtown office space and shops, said Sheri Wakefield-Saenz, the city’s community development manager.

“I would say it’s a very good indicator that we’re well on our way to some recovery in Tempe,” Wakefield-Saenz said.

The Hayden Ferry Lakeside property spans the south side of Tempe Town Lake, from Mill Avenue to Rural Road. It was sold by its original developer, SunCor, to Scottsdale-based Sunbelt Holdings. The deal included several Valley developments owned by SunCor, which decided to sell many of its properties because of the real estate slump. The price was not disclosed.

Sunbelt wanted Hayden Ferry Lakeside for its potential when the economy recovers, president and CEO John Graham said.

“We bought it because we think it’s a very key location and has a very good future,” he said.

The deal includes 16 acres and an option to develop 15 acres now owned by Arizona State University. Sunbelt also bought the 2,500-space parking garage and 25,000 square feet of retail space attached to that structure. The sale did not include the west end of the project, where SunCor built two office towers and two condo buildings.

Sunbelt will look to SunCor’s master plan for a hotel and more condo and office towers before considering any alterations, Graham said. The company will clean up the vacant land for now, but any major work will wait until demand returns.

“In light of the commercial market, it is at least a few years away,” Graham said.

Another significant sale is the University Square property, a full block on University Drive where 3W Companies won approval for a 300-foot-tall cluster of offices, condos and a hotel. Tuscon-based Sundt Construction paid $10.13 million for the site of slightly more than three acres.

The block was once full of businesses, but 3W tore down all but one low-slung slump block building in preparation for construction. The plans stalled at the front end of the real estate crash.

Sundt plans to demolish the sole building and turn the block into a parking lot, Wakefield-Saenz said.

“Their immediate intent is to clean up the site and reduce some of the visual blight that’s there now,” she said.

Sundt plans to have the parking lot ready when the fall semester begins in August. The company will evaluate development plans as the economy recovers, Wakefield-Saenz said.

The other major downtown transaction involved Seattle-based Vulcan Real Estate buying the eight-story Tempe Gateway tower at Mill and Third Street. Microsoft’s Allen paid $35 million and is actively trying to lease a building that’s sat idle since Phoenix-based Opus completed the tower a year ago. Opus filed for bankruptcy protection at the time. No leases have been announced since the June sale.

However, Tempe has seen a fairly active interest in leasing downtown properties since about May, Wakefield-Saenz said.

“It’s another good step in the recovery,” she said.

ciweiss Jul 19, 2010 2:03 AM

http://www.azcentral.com/business/re...jects0716.html

Plans for downtown Tempe Hotels sidetracked by the economy


Brad Hultquist says he has watched the Arches Plaza in downtown Tempe, which used to house his salon, slowly "decay."

In 2006, the Tempe City Council approved plans to transform the 1960s-era brick buildings into University Square, a $500 million megaplex of development that would span a city block near University Drive and Forest Avenue. Developer Tony Wall's project was to include a high-rise Westin hotel, office and retail space and condominiums.


Hultquist and Dave Cheren, the owner of neighboring Arches business Dave's Dog House, fought to stay but were forced to move out in 2008 to make way for the swanky development.

Today, the Arches lot is littered with trash and weeds. The west windows of the dilapidated building are shuttered with particle board, and the east window where Hultquist's Grooming Humans Hair Studio once stood, is still plastered with copies of his goodbye message.

"We will have to leave our beloved little spot in the Arches. Since August . . . 1988, my staff and I have tried to provide the friendliest service," he wrote.

Hultquist moved his studio into a space across the street. Each day he waited for construction on University Square to launch, hoping to be one of the first stores to move back into a retail space.

But the project went into foreclosure, and the building slowly deteriorated. It was recently purchased by Sundt Companies for a bargain $10.13 million.

"Of course it makes you sad, but we've been there watching it decay for so long. You become kind of numb to it," Hultquist said. "But if you're a visitor who came back to see what it's become, you would be devastated."

University Square was one of a host of hotel projects proposed in the past decade in downtown Tempe and around Town Lake. The tourism boost was supposed to help reinvigorate the Mill Avenue District with hundreds of consumers.

"At one point we had about 12 different (proposed) hotel (developments)," said Sheri Wakefield-Saenz, Tempe's Community Development manager. "In early to mid 2000s . . . Tempe was really that place where the industry leaders were looking to expand. . . . There was clamoring demand."

As proposals stacked up, the council waived height requirements for high-rise hotel developments, and developers began clearing out small businesses. The city drew criticism for flooding the market with too many hotel developments.

But a 2006 study commissioned by Tempe backed the city's goals of wooing luxury hotels and a major hotel with enough conference space to attract large conventions.

The study noted Tempe's hotel market was underbuilt. The city had some of the highest hotel-occupancy rates in the state. There was more demand than the 47 hotels and motels in Tempe could handle. About 80 percent of the city's hotel-room rates were under $150 a night, according to the study, which meant Tempe could benefit from tapping the luxury market.

At the time of the study, Tempe officials were convinced that three hotel projects in downtown Tempe and at Town Lake were just around the corner. Hayden Ferry Lakeside, Rio East and an expansion of Tempe Mission Palms would help meet the demand.

The Hayden Ferry Lakeside project was supposed to include a hotel on the south bank of Town Lake. Mission Palms' expansion would have increased the number of rooms by more than 60 percent. Plans at Rio East, which was part of the Pier 202 project near the eastern part of Town Lake, included an upscale hotel.

None of those projects materialized.

The only hotel that was built near downtown Tempe was Aloft, which opened in 2009 on the north shore of Town Lake.

But Wakefield-Saenz remains certain that when the economy rebounds in a few years, Tempe will see construction of a luxury hotel and larger hotel with conference space.

"The demand . . . will still be there," she said.

Stephanie Nowack, president of the Tempe Convention and Visitors Bureau, agrees.

She points to several groups that wanted to host their conventions in Tempe but the existing hotels could not accommodate the size of the group.

David Rosenbaum, director of sales and marketing for Fiesta Resort Conference Center near Broadway and Priest Drive, said the resort increased its conference space two years ago and has seen a major boost in its group bookings.

"We've done great with groups of 200 to 400," he said. "I could see the potential for a large conference center in Tempe capturing the major conventions."

But some hotel-industry analysts think the economy is so bad that construction of new hotels is unlikely in the Valley for at least the next few years.

John Pappas, a principal owner and Valley lodging analyst with Scottsdale-based SCS Advisors, won't even predict when the Valley will see a new hotel built. Arizona's hotel industry was doubly hit because of the recent passage of a tough immigration-enforcement law, he said.

SunDevil Jul 19, 2010 5:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ciweiss (Post 4916889)
Sundt plans to demolish the sole building and turn the block into a parking lot, Wakefield-Saenz said.

“Their immediate intent is to clean up the site and reduce some of the visual blight that’s there now,” she said.

Sundt plans to have the parking lot ready when the fall semester begins in August. The company will evaluate development plans as the economy recovers, Wakefield-Saenz said.

Immediate and only plans. More parking is not needed around campus, there is light rail, the orbit, the flash (for getting around campus), buses, and tons of bike lanes/paths and bike racks. It's already built for dense living conditions, a parking lot is an insult.

mwadswor Jul 19, 2010 4:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SunDevil (Post 4917063)
Immediate and only plans. More parking is not needed around campus, there is light rail, the orbit, the flash (for getting around campus), buses, and tons of bike lanes/paths and bike racks. It's already built for dense living conditions, a parking lot is an insult.

It's better than a dirt lot, and it may help accessibility of Mill. Us on this board may think Mill is accessible via light rail and the orbit (which it is), but parking is pretty limited in the area, and as a result a lot of people with cars are skipping Mill and heading to Tempe Marketplace. Yes, any actual structure would be better, but a parking lot isn't nothing, and it's a sign that they don't want to invest in any sort of structure because they want to retain the option of putting something substantial there when the economy recovers.

This is a good thing in the long-term. It could be worse, they could put another Jack in the Box or Taco Bell drive through there.

williard Jul 20, 2010 2:27 AM

Tempe unlikely to recover from condo crash anytime soon
 
This story is, of course, very discouraging to me, who lost my $81,000 deposit on Centerpoint.

--Mike Williard

http://www.azcentral.com/business/re...overy0717.html

Experts say condominium development in downtown Tempe, which came to an abrupt halt when the recession began, will likely be on hold for the foreseeable future.

The beginning of the recession halted many planned or in-progress condo and mixed-use developments, including the Onyx tower, the South Bank, University Square, The Armory, Centerpoint and 100 Mill Avenue.

Will Daly, a real-estate agent specializing in condo sales, said those projects are unlikely to ever be completed as originally proposed.

New high-rise condo projects could possibly be built somewhere down the road, but don't expect them anytime soon, he said.

"High-rise condominiums are among the most expensive type of housing to build," he said. "As we come out (of the recession), I think investors - whether they be developers, lenders, bankers - are going to be cautious."

Even before that happens, Daly said, real-estate agents will have to find a way to get rid of the surplus of vacant units in Tempe. For example, the 104-unit Bridgeview community has about 50 vacancies. The Centerpoint towers, which are for sale, have about 380 units, which may have to be converted to hotel or office space, he said.

Most of those communities came at the tail end of a rush to develop condos over the last half of the decade. Downtown Tempe was seen by developers as a desirable market for condos because of its relative density and vibrant nearby shopping. The city welcomed the developments, which fit into its overall plan for high-density residential construction in the downtown area, according to deputy development services manager Lisa Collins.

Demand shot up, Daly said, as low interest rates and lax mortgage underwriting guidelines lured people into investing in condominiums. Developers made extravagant plans, bolstered by the high demand.

But when the market crashed, demand for condominiums bottomed out. Projects in the planning stages were put on hold and many of the newly-built projects stayed vacant.

"You had all sorts of really wonderful projects proposed . . . and a few of them got built," Daly said. "But when the house of cards collapsed, some developers got cut short."

Jay Butler, an associate professor at ASU's W.P. Carey School of Business, said the idea of attempting to transform the area from a college-student hangout to an enclave for wealthy urban professionals was flawed to begin with.

"The couple of people I know who live in central Tempe are connected to ASU," Butler said. "The idea that suddenly we're going to be attract this different group of people to come was somewhat, in my mind, unrealistic."

Tom Tokoph, a consultant for Tempe-based Urban Realty, acknowledges the market spun out of control - he recalls seeing asking prices for some properties in Hayden Ferry Lakeside in the high 800s. After foreclosure, banks sold some of those properties for about $200,000, he said.

But Tokoph believes the overall vision most developers had for the area is sound. Eventually, he said, the allure of Tempe will bring demand back up and there will be more condo development.

That is a prediction Stephen Huey and Patrick Cantelme, who share a condo in the Northshore community, are banking on. They purchased the unit, once valued at $300,000, for $165,000 in March. They plan to live in the unit for the next two to three years, then sell it for a profit - Huey said he expects the value to be more than $200,000 by that time.

"The location is a big draw," he said. "There's going to be a lot of demand in a couple of years."

Jsmscaleros Jul 20, 2010 8:13 PM

I'd love to see Centerpoint purchased and converted into a hotel. This would be a more feasible short-term plan as the demand for luxury condos is currently nonexistent. It would also be a great long-term investment, especially if much of the lower-level retail and common space was converted into convention space and ballrooms. Centerpoint could possibly attract a lot of expo and convention business this way - that is, the ones that are still willing to come to Arizona.

combusean Jul 21, 2010 1:15 AM

Its too tall for efficient use of a hotel, and the floorplates and ceilings wouldnt work for office. The fact that Daly suggested office makes me wonder how he had the lead in to the story...

I guess that's reporting these days. Call up two contacts, drive over there and hang out long enough till you interview somebody, then report what everyone already knows and question nothing.

SunDevil Jul 21, 2010 3:58 AM

seems to me that the easiest thing to do is to finish Centerpoint, but not as condos, as apartments. If a good enough deal is made for the purchase and with the cost of materials still depressed versus a few years ago the cost of finishing them wouldn't be so high, thus apartments would be feasible, right?

Tempe_Duck Jul 21, 2010 6:01 AM

one of the west end damns at Tempe Town Lake just blew. Water is freely flowing down stream. Currently it is about 6ft below normal water level.

Quote:

Tempe Town Lake dam bursts

23 comments by Karina Bland - Jul. 20, 2010 10:47 PM
The Arizona Republic

A section of the inflatable dam containing Tempe Town Lake exploded about 10 p.m. Tuesday, sending a wall of water into the Salt River bed.

The river filled as far as the eye could see within seconds, witnesses reported.

Warning sirens started wailing within minutes, and officers rushed along the riverbed to try to warn anyone of the approaching flood.

There was no immediate word of any casualties or injuries.

Preston Swan, 24, of Tempe, witnessed the dam's collapse.

"It sounded like a big explosion," he said.

He and some friends were riding bikes in the area when section of the recreational lake's western dam erupted. It collapsed immediately and water instantly surged into the riverbed.

The waves subsided somewhat as the lake continued draining.

Maureen Howell, 24, of Tempe, said she called 911 and that police arrived almost immediately.

"We stuck around because we thought this was a once in a lifetime event," she said.

Philip Kanemeyer, 23, of Tempe said the sound of the explosion was so loud that "I actually ducked because I saw pieces flying 10 feet into the air."

"It just flooded over in seconds," he said. "It was a high wall of water."

Lukas Henderson, 13, of Tempe was biking on the north side of the lake with his sister and dad.

"All of a sudden, we heard this ka-boom and the ground started shaking," he said.

Six to eight-foot waves poured out.

"It was like, whoosh, and the lake started emptying," he said "It was amazing."

Witnesses said small animals poured up the river's banks to escape the floowaters.

Check back later on azcentral for updates.



Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/community/t...#ixzz0uINT9TFL

Vicelord John Jul 21, 2010 7:11 AM

It was crazy to watch the flow come down river. It was like a flash flood.


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