By Roland Murphy for Arizona Builder’s Exchange
As anticipated, the recently commenced 22-mile Loop 202 expansion project is spurring development plans near the proposed freeway corridor. The most recent proposal before the City of Phoenix is an 898-unit, 158.6-acre residential community to be known as McClellan Ranch in Laveen, northwest of Dobbins Road and the 67th Avenue alignment.
Construction of the four-phase, seven-lot plan is hoped to commence in Q1, 2018. The first phase will be a higher density residential development with up to 158 units. Plans for the remaining six development spaces call for single family residential with per-section maximums ranging from 102-140 units.
The primary entrance to McClellan Ranch will be from Dobbins Road by way of the 67th Avenue alignment to a community collector road. A secondary entrance come in from 70th Avenue.
Plans call for significant open spaces, including a 100-foot corridor to provide a buffer for the adjacent Gila River Indian Community, and additional open space along the community’s internal collector roadway. A multiuse trail along the western and northern boundaries will also connect the project to the regional transportation corridor to capitalize on the planned higher intensity uses along Loop 202.
The proposal plans to make use of existing and planned recreational developments in the area. Trailside Point is located one mile north and offers amenities such as lighted basketball courts, sand volleyball, a splash pad and child play areas. The city also has plans for a park at 71st Avenue and Meadows Loop Road to the north of the project and another at 55th Avenue and Dobbins Road one mile to the east.
Site Considerations Planned to Benefit Area
The property area lies in the Laveen Elementary School and Phoenix Union High School districts. Rather than provide its own elementary school, the developer has agreed to a per-rooftop donation to LESD, as a school is already planned east of the project at Dove Ranch and the Desert Meadows School is located near the site to the north.
A cultural resources survey conducted on the property area in 2006 revealed scatterings of artifacts, primarily in the southern portion of the site. The survey recommended subsurface testing for buried prehistoric features. If previously unknown cultural resources are discovered during construction, the recommendation will be for contractors to stop operations until archeologists can determine their significance. If human remains are discovered, the city’s Archeology Office will be contacted for assessments and will notify the Arizona State Museum and the appropriate tribal organizations.