By Tasha Anderson for AZBEX
The Tempe City Council has approved beginning negotiations with developer, South Pier Tempe Holdings, LLC for the lease/sale and development of 11 acres of city-owned land at Pier 202.
The City of Tempe wishes to redevelop the area on the south bank of Tempe Town Lake East of Scottsdale Road and North of Rio Salado Parkway into a new mixed-use development.
In April, a Request for Qualifications was issued looking for a developer to purchase or lease and develop the 11 acres of lakefront property. According to the RFQ, the submittal and site plan should have included, “campus development that is complementary to other south side lakefront properties. The proposal should include Class A office and a hotel to capitalize on an area that offers vast economic development opportunity for high wage employment.”
While the city only owns six of the ten parcels at Pier 202, the RFQ encouraged respondents to explore acquiring all of the parcels to create a master plan development covering the entire site.
The RFQ was canceled and later reissued with a new due date of June 18th, and South Pier Tempe Holdings, LLC was the only submitting firm.
Second Time’s the Charm
This RFQ came four years after another deal for the Pier 202 land fell through.
Back in 2014, Tempe City Council approved an agreement with TrendEx Holdings, LLC for the development of a $1.2B, 2MSF project consisting of 750KSF of office space, 100KSF of retail, 400 condominiums, 150 apartments and a hotel.
According to a Phoenix Business Journal article dated April 17th, 2015, “TrendEx — which claimed to have financial backing – never was able to finalize a deal with Tempe that included a $17.6M purchase of the Town Lake land and $36M worth of property tax breaks. Tempe pulled the plug on the deal in January after TrendEx missed deadlines to buy the land.”
At the time, TrendEx was the only submitting firm. The city held off on reissuing a new RFQ until 2019.
At the July 31st, 2019 city council meeting, the city authorized staff to negotiate exclusively with the recommended developer. According to the city staff report, “Financial details will be determined through negotiation of the terms of the Development and Disposition Agreement and subject to City Council approval.”