By Roland Murphy for AZBEX
Planned apartments part of $1.15B in new development along 202’s 59th Avenue leg
Developer P.B. Bell is the latest to add its name to the growing list of companies contributing to the dramatic private development growth along the 59th Avenue leg of the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway.
When the freeway extension was first proposed, transportation and economic development officials promised extensive development and revitalization when pitching the Loop 202 extension, the northern leg of which runs parallel to 59th starting at Estrella Drive until it ultimately connects with Interstate 10.
The P.B. Bell 59th Ave Multifamily development proposes building 308 apartment units on a 14.56-acre site north of the NWC of 59th Avenue and Dobbins Road.
The proposed unit mix is:
- 88 one-bedroom units,
- 32 one-bedroom loft units,
- 154 two-bedroom units,
- 10 two-bedroom carriage units, and
- 24 three-bedroom units.
The residential buildings will range from one-to-three stories, with City of Phoenix planning staff recommending one-story buildings facing 59th Avenue to better transition from the nearby neighborhood. A one-story clubhouse building is included in the proposal. In addition to the clubhouse, other planned amenities include a pool, shade structures, turf areas, a firepit and barbeque area, and a dog park.
The area is currently used for agriculture and zoned to include ranch or farm residences. P.B. Bell has requested a rezoning to C-2 Intermediate Commercial, which would permit multifamily developments. A height and density waiver are included with the request.
This will be the first development within the Laveen Village Core according to the City of Phoenix staff report. Phoenix designated several Urban Cores to balance housing and development, concentrate density in Core areas and promote the unique character of each village.
Staff recommended approval for the development. The Laveen Village Planning Committee agreed and recommended approval with stipulations at its September 13th meeting. The request is now scheduled to advance to the Phoenix Planning Commission for an October 7th hearing.
P.B. Bell is involved with no fewer than eight other apartment communities in various stages of development in Arizona, five of which are currently under construction.
The site is currently owned by The Williams Family 1996 Living Trust. P.B. Bell is the developer. Architect is BMA Architecture, and landscape planning is being handled by Anderson Design. A request for the general contractor and planned construction timeline were not returned by press time.
Development Blooming Along 59th
The “If You Build It, They Will Come” made promises during the sales pitch phase of the $1.8B Loop 202 South Mountain have apparently paid off in spades. Since the freeway opened in December 2019, development has flourished, particularly in warehouse, logistics, manufacturing and other industrial sectors.
Within a mile of 59th Avenue along the freeway, there are currently 14 private projects and two master-plans in various stages of development. Six of the 14 are industrial, falling under warehouse/manufacturing. There is one retail outlet, a planned Harkins Theatre, and one self-storage complex.
Adding to the long-established theory that jobs bring homes, there are six residential projects in development. The area has become a proving ground for the burgeoning Single-Family Rental/Built-To-Rent trend, as four of the six proposals fall under that umbrella. One project is a collection of fourplex townhomes.
In addition to being the first development in the Laveen Village Core, P.B. Bell 59th Ave Multifamily is the first traditional apartment complex planned for the area. It is almost certain to not be the last.
Not counting the two master plans, for which estimates are not available, the 14 private projects within a mile of 59th Avenue along the 202 have a total construction valuation estimate of $1.14B, equal to nearly two-thirds of the freeway’s total cost to create.