Large fee increase proposed for Tucson retail developments could impact economy

By Gabriela Rico | Arizona Daily Star

Tucson’s ability to attract new retailers could take a hit due to a proposal that would double fees for new commercial retail projects and free-standing discount stores.

The city proposal also adds new categories for impact fees and lowers the cost for certain developments.

Officials say the proposed new rates eliminate discounts that were put in place during the recession. The proposal also more properly categorizes fees charged for certain projects, such as hotels and churches.

“Each type of business is assessed based on what kind of demand they create on the system,” said Elisa Hamblin, principal planner with the city of Tucson. “Commercial projects put greater demand on streets, whereas office projects don’t because most people stay there all day.”

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