Project Targets High Design in S. Scottsdale

Credit: City of Scottsdale

By Adrienne St. Clair and Roland Murphy for Arizona Builder’s Exchange

EJM Development Co. is requesting a zoning change from the City of Scottsdale to build a mixed-use development that will be specifically designed and curated to help revitalize South Scottsdale.

The plan, which will feature 3- and 4-story buildings, consists of a 267-unit apartment complex and 14KSF of retail space, along with common amenity areas for future residents. It is projected to be valued between $25M and $35M.

The proposal requests a zoning change from the site’s current designation of highway Commercial Downtown Overlay C-3 to Planned Unit Development.

The development, known as NWC of Scottsdale and Continental Mixed-Use Project, will be built on 4 existing parcels of land — approximately 253KSF — on the west side of N. Scottsdale Road in southern Scottsdale and will take the place of the existing Mark Kia car dealership.

The ground level facing Scottsdale Road will house 12.5KSF of retail space with covered customer parking. This section will also include a 1.8KSF residential amenity area consisting the leasing office, business center and a lounge. Residential units begin west of the retail area. The first level will house the pool deck area. Underneath the first level, a single layer of secured covered parking will be provided for resident use and will offer elevator access to all four floors.

The lot is bordered on the north by an abandoned lot that used to be another car dealership. East of the lot are several freestanding buildings that include a luxury car dealer, a restaurant and auto repair shop, a check cashing business and a used car lot. The southern border of the lot is E Continental Drive, which is lined with places like a gas station, convenience store and a laundromat. To the west of the space is a multi-family apartment complex.

The developers noted in their proposal that they have taken steps to not negatively impact the existing multi-family development. Some of their efforts include maximizing distance between the proposed project and the existing units and specific onsite design to decrease noise and traffic flow.

Additionally, the proposal notes that one of the potential benefits of the new project will be that it will “help revitalize the neighborhood and could serve as a catalyst for further development in the area.”

The proposal outlines a “high focus” on the plan’s “quality design.” According to the documents, “several things about this project make it ‘unique’ to the South Scottsdale area and deserving of amended development standards.” First, the project is the only mid-rise of its kind in the area and developers hope it will serve as an inspiration for future developers. The project will also feature underground parking and a cohesive streetscape.

The developers state that the project’s design is consistent with the Scottsdale General Plan, the Southern Scottsdale Character Area Plan and the overall goal of the project, which is “to create a product that can serve as an example of how to create environmentally-sensitive, modern desert architecture on an underutilized site, helping to revitalize and energize the culturally diverse amenities and services that South Scottsdale has to offer.”

They further state this project is among the first proposals to incorporate the new area guidelines and it, “will help begin to enhance and strengthen the design character of the area.”

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