Brown: Credit for south Scottsdale collaboration includes City Council members

As a longtime resident of south Scottsdale, I have lived through the ups and downs of the area.

I have also experienced the recent resurgence of this part of the city — especially the McDowell Road Corridor.

Denny Brown

For the past couple of months, watching the level of public involvement in the mixed-use development to replace Papago Plaza on the signature corner in south Scottsdale has been nothing short of amazing.

I took notice last week when the Scottsdale Independent published a column written by Andrea Alley entitled, “Bold community outreach gives us the best developments.”

In describing her involvement in the public outreach process for the new Papago Plaza project, she wrote: “Of all the things I’ve taken away from this experience, it’s that a collaboration – on all sides – can do a lot of good for everyone involved. We got a better project out of Papago.”

I agree with Andrea. And I appreciate the role she and her neighbors who live near the Papago Plaza site have played to ensure we get the best possible development for south Scottsdale.

I also believe it’s important to remember that she and the scores of others would not have had the opportunity to provide their input if it hadn’t been for Virginia Korte.

Last year on Dec. 12, I watched the City Council meeting where it looked like the development was a done deal. Then Councilmember Korte intervened on behalf of residents.

She led the discussion amongst her colleagues that ended up with a unanimous vote to add two more public outreach sessions to the schedule to allow additional resident input.

I clearly recall Councilwoman Kathy Littlefield stating she supported Councilwoman Korte by saying Korte said everything that Littlefield had intended to say. Following the discussion that Korte led, Councilwoman Suzanne Klapp jumped on board and made the motion to increase the number of outreach meetings, which Korte seconded.

All of this happened during the last council meeting of 2018 before Solange Whitehead was sworn in on the council one month later.

I think everyone would agree that when residents are allowed to have a real voice in a development project, good things can happen — and when they do, it’s important to give credit where credit is due.

Editor’s Note: Denny Brown is a 32 year resident of south Scottsdale.

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