Former Suns All-Star KJ Helps Bring The Battery to Warehouse District

Article originally posted on AZ Big Media on October 4, 2019

Kevin Johnson’s athletic legacy was secured at what is now Talking Stick Resort Arena. As a player, Johnson was a three-time NBA All-Star during his stellar career, earning him a place in the Phoenix Suns Ring of Honor.

His career after basketball has been quite impressive, as well. He was a two-term mayor of his hometown of Sacramento, Calif., and has since started his own development company, Seven Ventures.

Seven Ventures is part of a group that is developing a luxury apartment community in the Phoenix Warehouse District. On Wednesday, the official groundbreaking ceremony for The Battery was held at 310 E. Buchanan in the warehouse district of Phoenix, just steps from Chase Field and the arena in which Johnson made his name.

“You know I made my living at that darn building,” Johnson said during the event, pointing to Talking Stick Resort Arena. “I saw first hand what that project did for downtown and this community.

When I became mayor of Sacramento, I was able to build on some of the things I learned here and apply them to Sacramento.  As a result, we were able to save our basketball team and get a new arena downtown.

“So I have a perspective as a player, as a mayor and now as a developer. We want this project to be a game changer.”

JMA Ventures LLC, a San Francisco-based company, is leading the development, along with Jackson Square Properties and Seven Ventures.

The Battery is a Class A multifamily development in the Warehouse District, a burgeoning tech hub in downtown Phoenix. The Project will provide a best-in-class multifamily offering on a parcel adjacent to the MLB’s Chase Field, the thriving downtown Phoenix, and the eclectic Warehouse District, a once blighted industrial sector of the City which is experiencing a significant revitalization through the addition of numerous new creative firms and tech employers.

“I think the Warehouse District is shifting downtown and the entry into South Phoenix,” said Phoenix city councilmember Carlos Garcia, whose district includes the Warehouse District. “Going from the produce area to having different types of productivity, I think this project, in particular is important. They are able to preserve some of its historic value and bring jobs and bring residents.

When I sat out to run for this office, my main goal was to improve the quality of life for our community members and we can only do that if we improve the jobs, improve housing; and I think this project really sets that up.”

The completed project will feature 278 for-rent units throughout two four-story apartment buildings situated on two city blocks. The community will offer residents a number of amenities including keyless entry and smart home technology, a state-of-the-art fitness center, a rooftop amenity deck that features a pool, spa, and open air ramada, and common area designs that inspire creativity and collaboration by drawing upon elements commonly seen in co-working spaces. The Battery’s unit finishes will embody the authentic and often industrial aesthetic that has defined the personality of the historic Warehouse District. Exposed brick, concrete floors and slab countertops, wooden warehouse trusses and open air environments will be incorporated throughout the public spaces of the Project.

“This isn’t just another apartment project. We’ve kind of gone our of our way to design special features in this, kind of collaborative public spaces,” said Todd Chapman, president and CEO of JMA Ventures. “We’re really excited to be a leader in the warehouse district and to see this project be the home for those people who have chosen to work here and now have a real opportunity to live here and make this their community.”

The existing, historic brick structures located at the corner of 3rd and Buchanan will also be renovated and repurposed for retail and restaurant use and intertwine the new multifamily construction with the rich history the warehouse district has to offer.  The Battery is slated to open its doors to its first new residents in the first quarter of 2021.

The project will be built by hardison/downey construction inc.

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