The Dealmaker: 8/24/2017

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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


Housing demand fuels land sales in Greater Phoenix. Plenty of upbeat housing news and numbers in this rundown of Colliers International mid-year report, including: “Land sales for residential uses are off to the fastest start since 2013…  22,000 single-family permits are forecast to be issued in 2017… 7,000 multifamily permits are expected.” Get more highlights and access the full Colliers report in Rose Law Group Reporter.

SOHO Scottsdale’s first live/work residence launches Valley’s next great neighborhood with new urban vibe. The 64 townhomes and 10 lofts that comprise SOHO Scottsdale are the brainchild of Scottsdale-based Catclar Investments. Located on the SW corner of 92nd Street and Bahia Drive, SOHO has walking access to businesses, popular restaurants, and amenities. A grand opening is planed for October, but you can check it out right now — in Rose Law Group Reporter.

Maricopa motor club developers appeal judge’s ruling on referendum.(Disclosure: Rose Law Group represents APEX Motor Club.) “The developers [of APEX] outlined their argument in a 38-page opening brief filed with the Arizona Court of Appeals… In it, the appellants… disputed [a Pinal County judge’s] assertion that the city’s decision to issue a permit was a legislative action, which allows a referendum, rather than administrative. The appellants cited three factors Arizona courts use to decipher whether a municipality’s action is legislative or administrative…” Maricopa Monitor.

Scottsdale Fashion Square proposal slated for city council dais. “Macerich… is seeking… to expand the mall along Highland Avenue by amending the zoning restrictions on the 56-acre site and increasing building heights up to 150 feet… The development proposal includes potential future land uses including additional retail, office, hotel, restaurant, multifamily residential and a grocer.” Scottsdale Independent reports that the “cumulative direct economic impact to the city of Scottsdale could exceed $17 million.” The item is on the Aug. 29 agenda, so stay tuned!

Warehouse District building could become entertainment spot after sale. Developer Chuckie Duff recently closed on a 1940’s building located at 20 W. Jackson St. His company, Equus Capital, paid $3.9 for the property. In this Phoenix Business Journal report, Duff touches on plans for the “two-story, 21,000-square-foot building.”

Surprise planners pave way for In-N-Out Burger downtown. “[The popular burger joint] is cleared to build its downtown Surprise location after the unanimous approval of the site plan Aug. 17…” And while the “planning commission had… questions about the 1.6-acre site plan,” residents mentioned in this YourWestValleyreport welcomed the idea: “I think this would be a good project for the city. It’s long overdue and I think it’s a good location with the university coming.”

Pei Wei chain to move headquarters to Irving in latest corporate defection from the West. “Pei Wei Asian Diner, the Asian-themed offshoot of  P. F. Chang’s China Bistro, will leave its longtime headquarters in Scottsdale, Ariz., and establish a new home base and a new corporate culture in Las Colinas [North Texas].” Dallas News.

Moore, Pace discuss realizing municipal focus in Paradise Valley.Paradise Valley Independent catches up with elected officials Scott Moore and Julie Pace for this Q & A “to better understand what residents can expect from their local government as the fall town council session looms.” Topics include the Ritz-Carlton resort project, the Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan, and Hillside preservation.

Glendale City Council discusses pros and cons of light rail. “[Council members] heard their first update since approving a route in May 2016… [They] questioned the cost and asked if they were to vote against light rail to downtown, what happens to the money from [Prop.] 400, which expires in 2025, but projects are needed to be approved by late 2018.” The answer? The city would “forfeit the $72 million.” The Glendale Star.

Ahwatukee Board of Management apologizes for, rescinds board election screening. “In a formal complaint to the state Land Department earlier this year, [Center Court’s Karin E. Gray ] said the [ABM] screening panel was created to eliminate her candidacy because she opposed The True Life Companies’ plan to replace the defunct Ahwatukee Lakes Golf Course with about 270 single-family homes and duplexes as well as a farm…” AFN reports that Gray has “has won a settlement that eliminates its candidate-screening process.” (She also received a formal apology from ABM along with a nice little reimbursement for her complaint filing fees.)

Gila Community dispute over dust drifts across agencies, jurisdictions. “The conflict surrounds Old Price Road, a stretch of unpaved road just under one mile in length that lies within [Gila River Indian Community] boundaries adjacent to a Global Native agricultural operation to the west and Sun Lakes to the east. In recent years, increased traffic on the road has sent plumes of dust into several homes in the neighboring Sun Lakes community…” Ahwatukee Foothills News.

Where are all the businesses in Coolidge? “While areas throughout Pinal County continue to see expansion in the housing and industrial markets, smaller municipalities like Coolidge simply aren’t seeing the same economic boom… But according to [City Manager Rick] Miller, the future of Coolidge’s economic development is actually very bright. [L]ocated near the heart of Pinal County, the city stands to benefit a great deal from future projects…” Coolidge Examiner.

Arizona City Chamber hears Pinal transportation pitch. (Disclosure: Rose Law Group represents a coalition of property and business owners throughout Pinal County working to bring new transportation infrastructure to the county.) “Representatives from the Pinal Regional Transportation Association came to talk to the Chamber about what changes are going to be made… in Arizona City if the [$642 million, 20-year] Pinal Regional Transportation Plan is approved by voters in the November election.” Arizona City Independent.

Construction contract awarded for Hunt Highway widening. Casa Grande Dispatch reports that “Sunland Asphalt & Construction Inc. was the successful bidder on the [$16.7 million] contract to reconstruct and widen 2.5 miles of Hunt Highway to five lanes from Bella Vista to Magma roads.”  Widening is set to begin Sept. 5, and is expected to be completed 500 days later.

ASSISTED DEVELOPMENT – Copper Ridge granted more development time. “[Fountain Hills] Town Council has approved amendments to its development agreement with Americana Development and Building Company to allow the developer more time to get the proposed Copper Ridge assisted living project off the ground… The proposed development would sit on 12.24 acres situated along Avenue of the Fountains.” It would include a ‘four-story, 133,000 square-foot residential structure’ and a ‘two-story, 80,000 square-foot care unit.” Fountain Hills Times.

Kingman housing market on the up-and-up. Real estate players on the ground up in Kingman talk about the local housing market, an area that  — together with Lake Havasu City — ranked as the “No. 32 most profitable place in the country for home sellers with an average return of 38 percent,” according to a recent report. In Kingman Daily Miner.

Recreation Centers of Sun City West reopens aquatic complex after $4.1 million renovation project. “When it closed Jan. 3, the nearly 40-year-old aquatic facility [at the R.H. Johnson Recreation Center] had fallen into disrepair… Now the largest in the community, the 350,000-gallon pool boasts a variety of innovative features, including a dedicated water walking path, competitive swimming lanes and a zero-entry area for maximum accessibility. Four large, movable shade structures will provide relief from the sun, either over the pool or around its perimeter.” YourWestValley.

Fannie Mae joins Freddie in allowing appraisal-free purchase mortgages. HousingWire: “Last week, Freddie Mac extended its appraisal-free mortgage program to its purchase loans, announcing it will go into effect on September 1, 2017. Shortly afterward, Fannie issued its announcement: Property Inspection Waivers will be allowed on mortgages with low loan-to-value ratios.”

Mix shift begins to kick in. “The new home sales top-line number announced yesterday by the Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development fell way short of housing analyst expectations. So, what happened?” Builder hammers out the details to find out.

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


Trump comments on NAFTA talks put some Arizona businesses on edge.“Supporters of [NAFTA] have credited it with much of the success of Arizona’s trade with Mexico and Canada, which bought $8.3 billion and $2 billion in goods from the state, respectively, in 2016.” But President Trump said on Tuesday: “I think we will probably end up terminating NAFTA at some point.” Still, on Wednesday, “business and political leaders expressed hope… that negotiations on a new deal will still be allowed to play out.” Cronkite News.

Poll shows Flake in precarious spot. “The poll, which was conducted by Phoenix consulting firm HighGround, shows [Sen. Jeff] Flake down by double digits to primary challenger Kelli Ward… In the general election, the poll shows Flake losing to U.S. Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, who is considering challenging Flake for his U.S. Senate seat.”  Arizona Capitol Times calls it “grim news” news for Flake, and made all the more grimmer by the fact that “Sinema’s lead is outside margin of error.” Get the poll numbers here:

Legislator to draft law to unmask protesters he compares to KKK.“[Scottsdale Republican] Rep. Jay Lawrence wants to create criminal penalties for protesters who wear masks to hide their identity while committing crimes… ‘The thugs wearing masks and throwing things at police officers and breaking windows and robbing and pillaging while wearing masks and hoods are the equivalent of the Ku Klux Klan,’ Lawrence said.” But as this Arizona Capitol Times report points out, there’s one thing that might get in the way “such an effort” — a little thing called the United States Constitution.

Arizona joins coalition calling on Supreme Court to protect free speech, religious conscience. “A 14-state coalition has filed an amicus brief… urging the court to grant review and protect the freedom of speech and religious conscience rights of citizens, specifically a Washington florist named Barronelle Stutzman… [who] declined to create a floral arrangement for and oversee its placement at a same-sex wedding based on her religious beliefs.” Arizona Daily Independent (BTW, since this involves the construction of a floral arrangement, maybe the coalition should have also ask the court to review it under Freedom of ‘Assemblage.’)

Arizona’s high court hears appeal on ‘dreamers’ tuition. “An appellate court ruling denying in-state tuition to “Dreamers” is based on a flawed reading of the law, the attorney for Maricopa colleges contends… What the [Arizona Supreme Court] ultimately decides will govern not just the fate of more than 2,000 DACA recipients currently taking classes in the Maricopa system, [but] it also will determine whether ‘dreamers’… at the state’s three universities and other community colleges can afford to continue their education if they have to pay triple what they are now being charged.” By Capitol Media Services’ Howard Fischer in Arizona Daily Star.

Goldwater, coalition sues to protect voucher expansion. “Earlier this month… Save Our Schools… filed petition signatures to halt the voucher program’s expansion.” This week, a “coalition including the Goldwater Institute filed a lawsuit” alleging “that a preliminary review of the signatures’ validity has revealed a large number of irregularities.” Goldwater President/CEO Victor Riches: “By filing thousands of extremely questionable signatures, those who oppose a wider range of educational options for our state’s kids tried to pull the wool over the eyes of Arizonans.” ADI.

Fate of 3 national monuments in Arizona hangs on final rulings by Trump administration. “Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke faces today’s deadline to recommend shrinking, eliminating or leaving in place 21 national monuments, including [Vermilion Cliffs, Sonoran Desert and Ironwood Forest in Arizona]. His decisions could lead to legal challenges [not to mention conservationists’ heads exploding] that would test the authority of U.S. presidents and will likely deepen debate over the use or preservation of public lands across the West.” AZCentral.

Navajo solar plant breaks new ground. “In May of this year, in the shadows of sandstone towers near Monument Valley, an array of 120,000 photovoltaic solar panels fired up for the first time. In doing so, the Kayenta Solar Facility became the first utility-scale solar project to go operational on the Navajo Nation, producing enough electricity to power about 13,000 Navajo homes.” Navajo Tribal Utility Authority general manger, Walter Haase: “This is a game changer.” Arizona Daily Sun.

McCarthy Building Companies updates Mingus Union High School Read more

Phoenix Investment Real Estate Market Picks Up After Slow Start Read more

Phoenix Multifamily Market Remains Strong Despite Seasonal Uptick in VacancyRead more

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