Milhaven: Crossroads East is a good deal for Scottsdale

Nine billion dollars of economic impact — $33 million in additional infrastructure improvements, over 5,500 jobs, and increased height along the freeway to offset reduced height closer to neighborhoods in exchange for a $21.9 million reimbursement of the sales and property taxes generated by the project — is the full story of Crossroads East.

Linda Milhaven

Crossroads East is about 1,000 acres of desert along the 101 between Scottsdale and Pima Roads. It is currently owned by the State Land Department and already zoned for industrial, commercial, office and residential uses.

The State Land Department is constitutionally obligated to get the greatest return on the land in their care so it is inevitable that the land will be developed.

Nationwide Insurance has expressed interest in purchasing 136 acres for their regional headquarters and additional mixed uses in a master-planned campus. As the developer, they will be required to build $33 million of infrastructure improvements up front.

They must meet milestones for payroll dollars and square footage built to earn the reimbursement in three phases. If they fail to meet these hurdles, in any phase, then they are no longer eligible to receive that payment.

The deal received widespread support including the Arizona Department of Commerce and the Greater Phoenix Economic Council.

The process followed the city’s strict rules for openness, transparency and community outreach. The application for the rezoning became a matter of public record when it was submitted last year. The first public hearing was held in January of this year and was followed by other public meetings. City Council heard it in June.

The responsibility of your City Council is to ensure that development is compatible with the surrounding area and to get the best deal for you – our residents.

Our strong local economy is what keeps our tax rates among the lowest in the region. Putting commercial development along the freeway, getting additional infrastructure built and paid for up front, getting good jobs and a Fortune 100 company with a proven track record of supporting the community to expand in Scottsdale is a good deal.

All in all, it is a $9 billion benefit to our community and a good return on our investment.

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