The Dealmaker: 7/10/2017

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The Dealmaker is a daily note of the day’s top real estate stories served just in time for lunch. Bon Appetit! Subscribe here to receive the Dealmaker to your inbox





Cullum Homes introduces Camelback Mountain development. “Cholla Heights is prominently located on the [N.E.] slope of Camelback Mountain and offering panoramic views… stretching to the Four Peaks and McDowell Mountains.” CEO Rod Cullum: “Very rarely do we still get parcels of land like this to develop into seven large homesites. The views… are truly remarkable.” Too bad none of those “remarkable” views are represented in this Scottsdale Independent report. However, a rendering of one of the homes, with its stilt-supported sky pool — pretty impressive. Check it out!

Phoenix approves sale of land at center of Nowakowski controversy. “Almost two years after Phoenix canceled a downtown land sale over conflict-of-interest concerns involving Councilman Michael Nowakowski, the city finally has agreed to sell the [7.6-acre] property… Trammell Crow plans to transform the vacant piece of city-owned property into ‘The Fillmore,’ a bustling urban center with about 659 apartments, 20 townhomes, retail shops and office space, sidewalk cafes and plazas.” More on the deal plus an 8-rendering slideshow at AZCentral. 

THE PRICE OF ‘FUN’ & ‘FUNKY’ – See what city is buying for $210K in Roosevelt Row. “Phoenix is paying $210,000 for three conservation easements to keep three Roosevelt Row buildings in place and aid developers redeveloping them… One of the buildings is slated to… serve as a Roosevelt Row welcome center. Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton saw the move to save the outer shells of the building as a way ‘to protect the fun and funky character’ of the Roosevelt Row area.” PBJ.

Agreement delays possible sale of Glen Lakes Golf Course. “‘This means that for the next 12 months, we have an operating agreement with Arizona Golf to run the course,’ said [Glendale] Director of Public Facilities, Recreation and Special Events Erik Strunk… The agreement comes after reports surfaced that Glendale was discussing the possible sale of the course… The course is located at 5450 W. Northern Ave. and is sitting on 44.6 acre of city-owned land…” The Glendale Star. 

Lucid plant investor pulls out, but project on track in Casa Grande. “China’s financial markets were rocked by announcements this week that investment firm LeEco was liquidating assets in an attempt to raise capital to repay investors. Among the announcements was that LeEco had sold its shares in Lucid… David Salguero, marketing manager for the California-based Lucid, [tells Pinal Central], ‘Our Series D funding activities are going well and we continue to work on preparations for our factory in Casa Grande.’”

Maricopa eager to reach 50,000 population. “That level opens a city to [increased state sales tax revenue as well as] more economic development opportunities because some franchises want to see a certain population before they will entertain the idea of building in a particular city. These franchises include restaurants, clothing stores and even industrial manufacturing companies.” How far away is Maricopa from reaching that 50,000 population figure? (HINT: It’s less than 5,000 but more than 1. IDEA: Perhaps the city should run some sort of ad campaign, with a prize giveaway to the one resident who gets the city to that 50,000 mark.) Pinal Central

MAJOR-LEAGUE IMPROVEMENTS – Big League Dreams ballpark in Gilbert closes for repairs, will reopen in 2019. “After years of controversy and legal battles, the massive Big League Dreams ballpark in Gilbert — once touted as the ‘Disneyland for Athletes’ — shut its doors for repairs… During a recent inspection, a consultant found [‘dangerous’] deficiencies with the park’s grandstands… Gilbert issued a news release saying it will make $11.6 million in improvements to Elliot District Park, which encompasses the eight-field ballpark.” AZCentral.

Richmond American nabs another 117 home sites at Mountain Vail Estates for $3.99 Million. “Richmond American Homes… purchased 41-platted and engineered lots at Mountain Vail Estates in [S.E.] Tucson for $1.25 million… In a separate transaction, Richmond bought an additional 76 P&E lots also in Mountain Vail Estates for $2.74 million.” Real Estate Daily reports that in the Tucson market “Richmond… now represents about 37% of the total lots sold to homebuilders during the first half 2017.”

‘GOING, GOING… NOT GONE’? – Sale of Prescott Gateway Mall falls through. “After a two-day auction, the Prescott Gateway Mall sold on April 5 with a final bid of $10,009,999.” And now? “The [DailyCourier… kept being told that the negotiations were ongoing. It wasn’t until [last week], that Tabani Group Inc., which owns the property, was willing to provide a comment on the matter… ‘The mall has not changed ownership…’ Theresa Dorlan, marketing coordinator for Tabani Group, stated in an email.”

Demolitions begin for SR 347 Overpass Project. “The demolition is making way for the beginning of construction of an overpass on SR 347 that will allow drivers on the busiest of Maricopa roads to travel over the Union Pacific Railroad… On Thursday, contractors were working on demolishing old houses and trailers.” And Casa Grande Dispatch has pictures to prove it.

Dealmaker BONUS: Construction to start on downtown Tempe development with Whole Foods grocery. “Denver-based Forum Real Estate Group is developing The Local [at University and Ash] which includes a luxury apartments and the grocery store. Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell, executives from Forum Real Estate Group and Whole Foods will be at a Tuesday groundbreaking event.” Phoenix Business Journal.

Dealmaker DOUBLE BONUS: Soaring rents make New York unaffordable, even for your favorite TV characters. “[A]partment hunting app Roomi… recently indulged in a useful thought experiment: How would some of television’s most recognizable fictional faces fare in NYC’s overheated rental market? For fans of popular TV staples like ‘Sex and the City,’ ‘Girls’ and ‘Friends,’ Roomi’s answers may come as something of a surprise.” Check out the findings at CNBC. 

As a supplement to the Dealmaker, we thought you might enjoy these articles!

[SUNDAY FEATURE] Gov. Doug Ducey asks EPA for power to regulate Arizona streams; Rose Law Group Founder, President Jordan Rose comments. Arizona Daily Star: “That power can have huge impacts over how strictly development along those streams is regulated, such as subdivisions and mines…” Jordan Rose, who works with developers and landowners on issues relating to designations for waters of the U.S., says, “The Governor is right to be pushing to allow the State to set up a system to regulate our waters and remove that responsibility from the federal government.”

AG opinion: Officials must preserve public records even on private phones; privacy vs transparency, says Rose Law Group attorney Tom Galvin. “Public officials can’t use private phones or social media messages to get around public records laws, Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich stated in an opinion Friday. Brnovich said public officials have a duty to preserve records that pertain to public business, even if they’re on private cell phones.” Thomas Galvin: “The AG opinion is saying that the difficulty comes when someone tries to obtain information from the personal device — which presents privacy issues. But, the bottom line is that a public official who is secretly conducting government business on personal devices (or private social media accounts) is breaking the law.” Thomas Galvin’s full statement and more on Brnovich’s opinion in Rose Law Group Reporter. (Also see Newsmaker item below.)

Does AG ruling give officials a private message escape clause? AG Mark Brnovich: “If the electronic message is solely on a private electronic device or through a social media account that an agency has not established as a system for conducting government business, then… the electronic message is not a public record…’” But is AG Brnovich correct? An attorney from the “First Amendment Coalition” doesn’t think so. The report from Capitol Media Services’ Howard Fischer in Arizona Daily Sun.

ASU Foundation to amend tax forms after article on ASU President Crow and wife, Sybil Francis. “The Arizona State University Foundation will amend four years of tax forms following an Arizona Center for Investigative Reportingarticle this week about ASU President Michael Crow and his wife, Sybil Francis. The article, by ASU journalism student Charles T. Clark, raises new questions about the six-digit salary paid to Francis by the foundation… Clark’s story focuses on ‘oddities’ in the foundation’s IRS Form 990s in the years since then.” Phoenix New Times.

Rooftop solar dims under pressure from utility lobbyists. “Prodded in part by the utilities’ campaign, nearly every state in the country is engaged in a review of its solar energy policies. Since 2013, Hawaii, Nevada, Arizona, Maine and Indiana have decided to phase out net metering, crippling programs that spurred explosive growth in the rooftop solar market. (Nevada recently reversed its decision.) Many more states are considering new or higher fees on solar customers.” The New York Times. 

Kids are living with their parents longer. It’s a good thing. “More than 60 million Americans currently live in multigenerational households, the highest proportion since the Korean War… And historical data suggests that the wholly independent nuclear-family household may be the aberration — that patterns of close familial support are the more natural arrangement.” The Washington Post.

Could a robot be president? “Yes, it sounds nuts. But some techno-optimists really believe a computer could make better decisions for the country — without the drama and shortsightedness we accept from our human leaders.” POLITICO.

Morrison Ranch expanding Read more

Momentous Milestone Reached by Estrella by Newland Communities, 5,000th Home Closes in Master-Planned Community Read more

Meritage Homes Purchases platted lots at Sunset Farms 99th Avenue and Broadway, Phoenix Arizona Read more

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