With major development changes to several valley malls, one mall could be up next in the redevelopment process.
Christown Spectrum mall, which opened in 1961, could be next in line to receive a major facelift that would create a more modern feel with plans that might include a hotel and residential community.
A request has been submitted to the city of Phoenix to establish a Planned Unit Development (PUD) for the property at 1703 W. Bethany Home Road, a site that was developed using the Planned Shopping Center (PSC) zoning and superblock concept. Primarily owned by Christown 1755, LLC, this mall is managed by Kimco Realty Corporation, which is proposing a multi-phase approach to evolving and expanding on the retail, service, entertainment and office uses in existence now.
Kimco Realty Corporation is interested in creating a “dynamic and vibrant urban environment” that would not only include retail shopping and restaurants but also a hotel, residential units and office spaces, according to Earl & Curley, PC, the legal firm representing the principals and development team.
The development for Christown Spectrum, would be designed around a mixed-use urban theme with an accessible pedestrian and bicycle network that would ultimately connect the Montebello/19th Avenue light rail station, according to the applicant’s paperwork filed with the city. Wide sidewalks, significant landscaping, lots of tree canopy offering shade and many pedestrian and bicycle amenities are being proposed on the redeveloped site.
“The idea is to try to make those places hubs for not only investment but also outdoor dining, walking. It builds on the fact that people are maybe getting there through rideshare or light rail,” said Joshua Bednarek, deputy director of the Planning Division of the city of Phoenix’s Planning and Development Department.
A date has not yet been set for the Alhambra Village Planning Committee to hear the case for the Christown Spectrum proposed zoning change. This committee will discuss the case for “information only” at the initial meeting and then the committee will vote on a recommendation at a second meeting. The next step after a vote is taken is for the city’s Planning Commission to listen to a presentation on the proposal and make a recommendation on it. The City Council will have the final say in whether to approve the rezoning.
Currently Christown Spectrum is home to Walmart, Walgreens, Ross Dress for Less, Big 5 Sporting Goods and many additional stores and restaurants. Costco warehouse closed in September. It is unknown how the proposed development change would impact businesses that are currently in the mall. As the future of the mall is considered, Kimco Realty Corporation will face a “significant constraint” related to the long-term lease agreements of the tenants. Walmart’s lease and options will expire in 2053 and Walgreens’ lease and options will expire in 2102. The long-term leases delineate tenant control zones over big areas of the property, which offer rights that protect their customer parking lots, vehicular circulation, entrance driveways and additional issues.
To learn more about the proposal for the redevelopment of the mall, visit https://earlcurley.com/christownspectrum.