Papago Plaza Redevelopment to Begin this Summer After Design Tweaks

Article originally posted on Phoenix Business Journal on April 10, 2019
An artist's rendering shows preliminary plans for Papago Marketplace, which will begin construction this summer.

After receiving approval from the Scottsdale City Council to raze and redevelop the vacant Papago Plaza, to be known as Papago Marketplace, developers are headed back to the design review board after adjusting plans to reflect feedback from neighbors.

“We were able to establish a really positive dialogue with the neighborhood leadership and incorporate their direction and desires,” said Jason Morris, an attorney with Withey Morris working on the case.

Most changes have been “aesthetic” after Council’s vote to grant the rezoning, including doubling the open space and adding a splash pad, as well as additional public art, Morris said.

“They were looking for community benefits, for a gathering place for the neighborhoods,” he said.

Development plans include retail, grocery store, hotel and residential uses. Morris said tenants have not been announced for the retail or restaurant spaces yet, but plans have revealed the grocery store will be an Aldi.

According to documents submitted to the city by Nelsen Partners, the project’s architect, developers plan to build three retail or restaurant buildings totaling 25,000 square feet of space along the Scottsdale Road frontage. Morris said the developer, Pivot Development LLC, added additional retail space after hearing desires from the neighborhood.

Plans also include a 250-space parking garage on the site, as well as a separate residential garage, according to city documents.

“Gone is the large ‘sea of asphalt’ parking that blighted the site,” company representatives wrote in the submission.

The development lies just to the west of the Arizona State University SkySong development, where the fifth office building is nearing completion.

Morris said plans call for construction to begin this summer on the project, and neighbors have gone from a “knock-down, drag-out brawl” over the project to become very supportive of the redevelopment as their voices have been incorporated into the design.

The hearing before the design review board has not yet been scheduled, Morris said.