Grand Canyon University to Build More Parking

Credit: City of Phoenix

By Adrienne St. Clair for Arizona Builder’s Exchange

Grand Canyon University has submitted a rezoning request to the City of Phoenix to build a five-story parking garage on the NEC of 31st Avenue and Camelback Road in Phoenix.

The structure is meant to alleviate anticipated parking needs in the area for GCU students and other campus events. It will also “provide additional parking to support student housing within the larger Grand Canyon University campus,” stated the submitted proposal.

The parking garage will support approximately 1,928 vehicles and will be open and made of pre-cast concrete. It will stand on just less than 5 acres and is valued between $40M and $50M. Primary access to the site will be from the SEC on Camelback Road. A private drive will be built to connect the new structure to additional GCU properties to the north and east.

While the site is currently developed with self-service storage units, the developers argue their new project will make better use of the whole property.

“The proposal encourages redevelopment of an underutilized parcel to be compatible with and support the existing land uses in the immediate area,” the submittal said.

The site is bordered on the north by single-family residential space and surface parking. Single-family residential space is also to the south of the property. To the east is another parking structure and more surface parking. To the west is a church.

The current zoning designation of the site is District-Intermediate Commercial with a Special Permit. The owners request that the site be designated as Parking instead. Additionally, the city’s General Plan Land Use Map designation for the subject site is Residential 15+ units/acre; however, because the site is less than 10 acres, no amendment is required by the city to change that designation.

The city’s planning department has already tentatively approved GCU’s request – with a list of eight stipulations. One of the main stipulations is that the development should provide enhanced trail crossing between the existing Little Canyon Trail to Camelback Road. Other stipulations include notes about bicycle parking, a fire lane and landscape specifications.

Construction on the garage is expected to begin October of this year and be completed by August 2019.

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