By Luci Scott for Arizona Builder’s Exchange
Litchfield Park has approved plans to expand the storied Wigwam Resort, including building single-family and multi-family housing and commercial space, and reconfiguring the three golf courses, including using a portion of one course for residential use.
The resort has undergone renovations worth more than $20M in the past few years by JDM, a company in which sports mogul Jerry Colangelo is a member. JDM has broken the project into three parcels.
The town approved rezoning of a 28-acre parcel on the northwest corner of Litchfield Road and Village Parkway to high-density residential for 167 units, some single-family, some condos and some patio homes. The architect is Scrivner Design Group, and the developer and builder is Cachet Homes.
The plot, known as Parcel A, is adjacent to Heritage Golf Course, also known as the Red Golf Course.
Commercial space plus multi-family housing
The city council changed the general plan to accommodate plans for another site, or Parcel B, which comprises 15 acres on the northwest corner of Litchfield Road and Wigwam Boulevard. The site changed from commercial to mixed-use, which would include 75KSF of commercial space and an as-yet-unknown number of multi-family units, either condominiums or rental apartments.
“Until there’s a zoning case, we won’t know how many units,” said zoning attorney Paul Gilbert, who is representing JDM in the application with the city.
The site consists of a small portion of the Village at Litchfield Park, a master plan covering about 393 acres. Developers envision a mixed-use project similar to Kierland Commons in Phoenix and Scottsdale Quarter in Scottsdale, an integration of residential with commercial.
“The juxtaposition of dwellings and retail provides a lifestyle that is becoming increasingly popular and which is entirely compatible with the character of Litchfield Park,” the application says.
Third parcel adjacent to resort
A third property to be developed, known as Parcel C, is 7.5 acres south and east of the southeast corner of North Old Litchfield Road and Bird Lane, and it is adjacent to the resort. The council also amended the General Plan for this parcel.
“In order for anything to go forward, there needs to be a rezoning,” Gilbert said. “If it’s rezoned, plans are for construction of resort condos, but we don’t know how many units. … These condos will be part of the resort.” This parcel consists of a portion of the golf courses known as the Blue and Gold courses.
Documents filed with the city say, “The need to expand the room count of the Wigwam Resort has long been recognized … and the Wigwam does need more rooms in order to book larger conferences that generate income the resort needs.”
When JDM acquired the Wigwam several years ago, the resort had survived a devastating bankruptcy and was in disrepair with limited business prospects from the resort and the golf properties. The renovation has brought the resort back to a vibrant life.
The Wigwam expansion, to include commercial and residential properties, is expected to be a boost to the Litchfield Park town core with more shops, restaurants and entertainment and commercial amenities.
“There is a need for more rooftops to help attract the commercial,” Gilbert said.
“We are very appreciative of the cooperation of the city of Litchfield Park, and are grateful for the confidence they have demonstrated in JDM.”