The Dealmaker: 10/23/2017

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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


Letter: Vote for Props 416/417 so this doesn’t happen to you. (Disclosure: Rose Law Group represents a coalition of property and business owners throughout Pinal County working to bring new transportation infrastructure to the county.) For Pinal County supervisor Mike Goodman, “[p]ublic safety has always been a key reason” why he supports new roads and freeways that will come with the passage of Props 416 and 417. And it’s something that became all the more salient last week, when Supervisor Goodman’s “pregnant daughter and her husband were stuck in traffic trying to get to the hospital” for delivery of his new granddaughter. InMaricopa. 

East Valley’s last dairy farmers look to develop 860 acres, leave area.(Disclosure: Rose Law Group represents the 13 dairymen working to plan their land in collaboration with the city of Mesa.) “Much of the land falls within Maricopa County [‘near Loop 202 around Elliot and Hawes Road’] and will require annexation into Mesa before development could take off.  The group of dairy farmers plan to take their zoning application to the Mesa later this year, according to Jordan Rose… The group wants to work with city officials to refine the plan for approval by the City Council next year. The proposed land-use plan so far includes residential, urban mixed-use, commercial and office space areas… If the dairymen are successful in zoning the primarily-agriculture land to housing, commercial and other uses, it’s likely they’ll pack up and sell, moving to counties with far more space for agriculture, like Pinal or Pima.” AZCentral 

Q & A: Dennis Webb of Fulton Homes. (Disclosure: Rose Law Group represents Fulton Homes.) For this latest installment in its series of interviews with “top design and build professionals,” Arizona Foothills Magazine talks with Vice President of Operations at Fulton Homes, Dennis Webb, about his “biggest professional accomplishment” and “the colorful addition he is seeing in many of today’s homes.”

Ahwatukee Lakes Golf Course trial to begin this week. “The non-jury trial before state Superior Court Judge John R. Hannah comes 15 months after he ruled that deed restrictions enacted two decades ago require the operation of a golf course on the 101-acre site. But those covenants, conditions and restrictions are themselves now on trial after The True Life Companies, which owns the course [and seeks to turn it into an ‘agrihood’] asked Hannah to rule that those land-use regulations have materially changed and that playing golf there is no longer an option.” Ahwatukee Foothills News.

Animal BnB. Party buses unloading dozens of party-goers; “loud music and profanity-laced banter at all hours”; “cars lining… once tranquil streets”;“ ‘naked old dudes [and women] running around… doing a topless contest.’ ” Phoenix Magazinereports on “a few of the many scenarios playing out across the state since the Arizona Legislature in January 2017 passed Senate Bill 1350, which restricts cities, towns and counties from regulating short-term rentals.” Phoenix Magazine.

Phoenix-area’s foreclosure crisis shifted voters’ preferences, ASU study says. “New research from Arizona State University shows the Valley’s foreclosure crisis led to more of the area’s voters opting against incumbents and ‘traditional’ candidates… Researchers have named the theory the ‘Housing Distress Political Feedback Loop.’ ” The study’s findings strongly suggest that this shift in voters’ preferences helped get President Donald Trump elected. AZCentral.

HomeSmart debuts ‘SmartListing’ technology in Phoenix, Palm Springsand Colorado. “[SmartListing] gives consumers the ability to text, call or click to get property details instantly [when in front of a property for sale], without connecting to a live person… [It also captures] that inquiry for agent use when marketing the listing or growing their clientele in the future.” More on how the technology works in AzBigMedia

[OPINION] Is a proposed world-class desert experience being poisoned in Scottsdale? “The project is Desert EDGE, a brilliantly conceived environmental and educational immersion experience proposed for 5.3 acres within Scottsdale’s Gateway Trailhead in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve… [But a] small group of… residents is fighting the project so bitterly, Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane calls it the most ‘vitriolic,’ ‘outrageous’ and ‘divisive’ campaign he has ever seen.” Hoping that this “ ‘vitriolic’ opposition is not permitted to paralyze the community’s governing processes” Arizona Report “Lifestyle Contributor” Ken Lynch calls on the City Council to “promptly vote to approve Desert EDGE.”

Arizona Challenger Space Center moves to a Phoenix mall — at least for now. “[T]he non-profit is renting 5,400 square feet of office and classroom space to continue education programs with area schools. The mall’s owner, Carlyle Development Group, will provide space for the center’s gift shop heading into the holiday season…” But as AZCentral reports, the “new digs are temporary,” as “Challenger is negotiating with Metrocenter, as well as the cities of Glendale and Surprise, for a larger, permanent home…”

Sedona P & Z discuss proposed hotel next to Courtyard by Marriott.“When Courtyard was approved the developers had stated that there was the possibility of building a second hotel on the property but no plans were presented at that time. It wasn’t until late last year that owner Paul Welker appeared before the city during a conceptual hearing for Residence Inn…. Check out how the “plan has changed” since then, in Red Rock News. 

Can the addition of mixed-use developments improve retail’s future? “According to the experts from Valley Partnership’s Monthly Friday Morning Breakfast… the answer is yes and successful examples can already be seen across the Valley.” David McGlothlin’s coverage of the event in AzBigMedia  looks at how “commercial developers are updating… shopping centers… to include specialty retail, offices, technology, healthcare and residential, creating dynamic live-work-play destinations.”

U.S. hotel pipeline up YoY, PHX doing well. “[N]ationwide there are more than 585,000 rooms in nearly 4,900 hotel projects under contract, a 6.6 percent increase in rooms under contract from Sept. 2016.” As for Phoenix, the “September 2017 Pipeline Report from specialty data and analytics firm STR” shows “Phoenix doing reasonably well.” Get the numbers for “projects in the In Construction, Final Planning and Planning stages” — at AZBEX.

AZ employment: Construction gains 1,600. In another report at AZBEX, Roland Murphy drills down into the state’s hard-hat job data — from Douglas to Kingman, Tucson to Flag and points in between — from a report published by the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity.

Pima County zoning changes to streamline development process, help water conservation efforts. “The first change amended development standards in mixed dwelling and multiple residence zoned areas to allow for greater density single-family home development… The second change the Board of Supervisors approved was an amendment to Rezoning Site Analysis Requirements concerning how new development conserves water.” Details on both “zoning code amendments” at REDNews.

City Manager Tyne says Peoria is adapting to change. “[City Manager Jeff] Tyne addressed [the Chamber of Commerce] luncheon audience last week and spoke with business people who questioned him about growth, jobs, transportation, budgets, and the city’s plans for the future.” The recap in Peoria Times.

Prescott council candidates clash on experience, water at forum. “Nearly 350 people packed the room at the Hassayampa Inn… to hear the seven remaining Prescott city candidates face off… The value of life experience, the future of the Big Chino Water Ranch, and party affiliation in a non-partisan election all came up in [the] candidate forum that allowed candidates to question one another.” The Daily Courier. 

Cameron’s $5M + deals of the day –

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

Is Congress about to wreck the Grand Canyon and other national park treasures?“It’s been used dozens of times by 16 presidents from both parties to preserve some of America’s most beloved wild lands and historic landmarks, laying the foundations for national parks and generations of family adventures.” In a Guardian feature titled “This Land is Your Land,” journalist and Montana resident Kathleen McLaughlin grumbles that “[t]hose lands are now facing a two-headed assault from Congress and the Trump administration, and the act itself faces an uncertain future.”

Trump Administration scrambles to save the Navajo Generating Station.“The Trump administration has until December to save the Navajo Generating Station… Resuscitating the plant could be the first test of President Trump’s resolve to restore demand for coal in the electricity sector…” TheWashington Examiner reports, however, that “prospects for the plant burning coal after 2019 are questionable.”

Jail audit shows misuse of more than $2M by Babeu sheriff’s office. “According to a report from the Pinal County Internal Audit Committee, the misuse of funds [earmarked to improve the condition of Pinal County’s jail’ but ‘instead used to pay employee wages and compensation’] goes back to 2013 and totals over $2 million. According to guidelines, the funds are not supposed to be used to pay employee wages and compensation.”  And what can the Board of Supervisors “do to stop the mishandling of funds by the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office”? Not much, reports Pinal Central.

Young subscribers flock to old media. “[M]illennials are subscribing to legacy news publications in record numbers — and at a growth rate, data suggests, far outpacing any other age group.” The New YorkerThe Atlantic, The Washington Post, The New York Times and “[e]ven The Wall Street Journal — not a paper usually known for being left around dorm rooms — said that it has doubled its student subscribers in the last year.” What has prompted this about-face by the millennial generation — “doing what it once resisted” in paying for news?  Find out in POLITICO.

I’m famous and didn’t even know it. What’s in a last name like “Riske”? One particular Riske named Phil wanted to know. Senior Reporter/Writer Phil Riske “decided to dig into the name after seeing this headline in Phoenix New Times:‘Here’s Illya Riske’s Secret to Having Three Guitarists in a Band.’ ” Check out where Phil’s research led, and find out if, all this time, you’ve been mispronouncing his last name, in Rose Law Group Reporter.

Baseball expansion could trigger realignment, longer postseason. “There seems to be a building consensus that baseball will soon be headed to a 32-team configuration. [Possible MLB franchises in Portland, Ore. and Montreal, Canada] will lead to major realignment and adjustments in schedule…” See how in Baseball America. (In RELATED items, AZCentra has: “Ron Gardenhire leaving Arizona Diamondbacks to manage Detroit Tigers,” and CBS Sports has “Tony La Russa leaving Diamondbacks front office at the end of October.” Access all three stories by swinging through to Rose Law Group Reporter. 

Americans push their kids harder in sports than school. “[M]any of today’s parents in the U.S. don’t push their children very hard when it comes to academics, they don’t necessarily believe in the connection between effort and academic achievement, and don’t believe that academic success is within the reach of any student willing to work hard for it.” So avers an American Enterprise Institute report. For highlights and a link to the full report tap to Washington Examiner

Newsmaker BONUS:  Arizona State Capitol, ugly? “The Arizona State Capitol the ugliest in the Nation,” says Thrillist. [Hip Historian, Marshall Shore,] decided to go directly to the source to get ITS view on the matter. WATCH in Rose Law Group Reporter.

Phoenix Industrial Market Surging with Activity Read more

Phoenix retail vacancy lowest in eight years; home furnishing store expansions signal housing market Read more

Optima Kierland condominium tower more than 75% sold Read more

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October 2017