DMB: we view Kierland development as next legacy project

The La Maison site where DMB is looking to further the form-based, multiuse zoning approach now prevalent in the Scottsdale Kierland area. (Arianna Grainey/Independent Newsmedia)

DMB Associates was founded over 30 years ago with a vision of creating award-winning and legacy development projects in Arizona. From its inception, DMB has planned and developed some of the Valley’s premier communities including DC Ranch, Silverleaf, Verrado, Eastmark and Centerpoint to name a few.

Now, DMB hopes to bring the same high quality development to Kierland. In fact, DMB has been a part of the Kierland success story for over 20 years and our Robb & Stucky furniture complex was the first commercial development in Kierland.

We have been actively involved in the Kierland Master Association throughout that time to ensure exceptional quality developments and redevelopments that are compatible with Kierland were approved. DMB supported and coordinated the redevelopment of the Optima residential project, which is under development. In fact, Optima worked with us to amend the deed restrictions to allow building heights of 120 feet for their parcel as well as the La Maison property.

DMB is proposing to bring its years of experience and reputation for superior developments to the Kierland community. Our current proposal to develop a 120-foot tall luxury, mixed-use project will preserve the existing retail experience and add a luxury lifestyle hotel along with condominiums. To accomplish this, we are in the process of rezoning our remaining property so that it can be developed to the same exact height (120’) and at the same density that Optima is developing.

It is unfortunate that we find ourselves locked in a zoning dispute with the Optima developer, and a few disgruntled Optima condo owners, who have only recently moved in and believe that their project should be the last project in Kierland’s evolution. Contrary to what has been said by our opponents, the proposed development will have at a minimum, the same level of open space as Optima and more open space than other recently approved projects in Kierland.

It is unfortunate that they want to close the door behind them to the continued successful development of Kierland due to fear of competition or the loss of penthouse views. When the Optima case was proposed a few years ago, they promoted height and density that blocked resident views within the Plaza Lofts and Paragon developments.

The notion that Kierland-area residents overwhelming oppose redevelopment simply isn’t true. We have heard from hundreds of local residents and business owners who are very enthusiastic about what this project will bring to the area. DMB has a legacy of setting a high bar for development in Arizona and creating places that residents are proud to call home.

To learn more about the DMB legacy projects go to

Editor’s note: this commentary was submitted on behalf of Bennett Dorrance, Drew Brown, and Mark Sklar, who are the founding partners of DMB Partners

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