(*Editor’s Note: Rose Law Group pc represents Circle G Holdings.)
For possibly the first time ever, the Gilbert Town Council has voted to convert a key parcel of land near Loop 202 from an employment land use into multifamily residential. This is notable because Gilbert elected officials have long held a philosophy of preserving employment lands in an effort to round out the economy as the community reaches buildout.
In this case, Ben Cooper, a Senior Project Manager for Rose Law Group and former Gilbert Town Council member, assisted Circle G Holdings with a general plan amendment and rezoning of approximately 19.7 acres of “Industrial” and “Business Park” land to “Multi-Family / Medium” for a planned 320-unit Mark Taylor luxury apartment community near Loop 202 and Power Road.
Cooper and Circle G, along with iPlan Consulting, were successful in demonstrating the benefits of the project, which will bring about $3 million in new infrastructure to open up the rest of the employment land to development. This, and other project benefits, ultimately helped the project gain the unanimous support of the Mayor and Council at the February 18, 2016 hearing.
Along the way to winning this approval, the team worked creatively and tirelessly to garner the support of the Gilbert Planning Commission, the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce, and the surrounding neighbors.
Circle G’s Jason Barney appreciated Cooper’s creativity and helpful Gilbert relationships, stating after the approval: “That was a tough case, very complicated. Ben’s insights into the needs of Gilbert and his help in achieving a win-win was invaluable.”
Cooper attributes the success to the quality of the proposal. “Circle G’s commitment to make the remaining employment land ‘development-ready’ was crucial in showing that Gilbert will now be much more successful in attracting employers to the rest of the site than it has had in the past,” he stated. “In addition, the luxury rental community envisioned by Circle G and Mark Taylor will be a great neighbor to the existing residents in the adjacent single family subdivision,” he continued.
Cooper knew from the beginning that the difficult case would require finding common ground with the goals of town officials. “Nearly every land use decision involves trade-offs,” he said. “The key is to find a solution where the end-result is greater than the status quo. When you work with policy-makers develop a smart plan, the support is there.”