It was nearly 10 years ago that Habitat Metro helped reinvigorate downtown Phoenix with a risky condo project. Now the pioneering real-estate developer is looking to give downtown Mesa a similar boost with a 14- or 15-story across from the Mesa Arts Center.
The Mesa City Council recently voted unanimously to approve project negotiations for the complex, which would include a parking garage, apartments, a hotel, shopping and restaurants.
“We think the time for Mesa to do something like this is right now. The ingredients are there: Light rail, education, the arts,” said Tim Sprague, Habitat Metro principal.
Raising Mesa’s Skyline
Proponents of the building say that it will provide much-needed accommodations for people who travel to visit the Mesa Arts Center. The site, located on the southwest corner of Main and Center streets, currently functions as a city-owned parking lot.
The land next to the site is already owned by the developers, who plan to build a food hall and 5,000-square-foot events center. The developers say the new construction is designed to complement the Mesa Arts Center and bring an infusion of visitors into the area.
Jeff McVay, Mesa’s Downtown Transformation Manager, said the building will be the tallest in downtown Mesa. Current plans call for a split of 75 apartments and 75 hotel rooms in the building.
Still in Negotiations
During the next year, city representatives will work with the developer to create a plan for the construction. Issues such as zoning for all buildings and financial incentives such as tax breaks or leasing provisions will be hashed out.
The city will maintain ownership of the land, which was gifted to it in the 1950s to be used for parking. The developers are incorporating the multi-level parking garage to comply with the property’s original mission.