Q&A: Paradise Valley Mayor Michael Collins on Five Star Scottsdale entitlements

The Paradise Valley Ritz-Carlton development — a more than 100-acre luxury development effort — is beginning to sprout both its commercial and residential footprint.

Michael Collins

Over the last few weeks, two major developments have occurred: Five Star Development sold 23 acres of land to Shea Homes within the Ritz-Carlton community in the Town of Paradise Valley meanwhile the city of Scottsdale has approved a new shopping center coined, “The Palmeraie” that will, in part, encompass 20 acres of land adjacent to the forthcoming Ritz-Carton resort community.

The project includes a 200-room Ritz-Carlton resort, surrounded by 91 single-level villas and 40 estate homes, all of which will be whole-ownership, branded and fully-serviced by the Ritz-Carlton.

In all, Scottsdale City Council approved three different measures for the zoning change with one being a $408,000 contribution to the municipality from Five Star Development for the city to use to assist in constructing and maintaining the city’s drainage system.

The approved measures will allow for a mixed-use development that can consist of 141 residential units in 170,000 square feet, a maximum of 150 hotel units on 134,000 square feet, 226,000 square feet of commercial space and 80,000 square feet of office space, according to the March 21 staff report.

Five Star Development, owned by Scottsdale resident Jerry Ayoub, is represented by Jason Morris of Whitey Morris PLC in this matter. Construction is began in July 2016 with the resort opening in late 2018.

On the heels of the Scottsdale zoning approval, the Town of Paradise Valley Independent reached out to Mayor Michael Collins to get his perspective on the project and recent municipal action. This is what he had to say:

•Does the recent approval from the city of Scottsdale coincide with what developers were telling you when Five Star was pursuing entitlements for the Ritz-Carlton property?

Large, multi-year and multi-phase development projects like this one oftentimes use placeholders for desired future land uses. Five Star has consistently communicated a desire to add a boutique hotel and condominium project to the site and so to see them as placeholders in phase two of the Scottsdale application was of no surprise. They have been both transparent and forthcoming about their desire for this to be a mixed-use resort lifestyle project.

•Do you think the development is a good thing or bad thing for the area economically?

Tax revenue to the Town of Paradise Valley and city of Scottsdale will be significant and much needed for both communities. Proceeds from the project will go a long way to maintain public safety staffing levels and allow each community to make much needed and long overdue investments in infrastructure and in things that make a positive impact on the quality of life of residents.

•Do you think the development is a good thing for residents?

This will be an incredible mixed-use resort lifestyle destination that builds upon the long-range visions of the voter approved General Plans for both communities. It was encouraging to see a unanimous approval from the Scottsdale City Council. Just like us they are a diverse bunch all equally committed to improving the quality of life of their residents.

The fact that this was a 7-0 Scottsdale vote tells me that the value of this project to the community was obvious and its conformity to the resort corridor vision and character outlined in the Scottsdale General Plan well demonstrated. I’m excited to see this progress and look forward to working with our Scottsdale counterparts in making this regionally significant project a reality once and for all.

Independent Newsmedia Arizona Managing Editor Terrance Thornton can be contacted at tthornton@newszap.com

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