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Retail activity up 'dramatically' in West Valley: Developer talks big expansion plans

  

As retail recovers in the Phoenix metro from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, developers have continued making plans for building shopping centers across the Valley, including some new up-and-coming projects for the West side.

Joshua Simon, CEO of Scottsdale-based SimonCRE, which launched 2010, said in the past few years, retail activity in the West Valley has picked up "dramatically."

SimonCRE is one of a several developers that has big plans for the West Valley, including a shopping center in Buckeye called Jackrabbit Ranch Marketplace and an 800,000-square-foot retail project in the master-planned Prasada community in Surprise.

The developer also recently received rezoning approval from Glendale for a planned 42,841-square-foot retail center a couple miles east of the Westgate Entertainment District in Glendale.

Some of the newest leases in the Buckeye marketplace include Macayo's Mexican Food, Salad & Go, Ebb and Flow Coffee Co., Dollar Tree, Goodwill and other well-known fast food restaurants. SimonCRE also sold a facility fully leased to businesses such as F45 Training and Matt's Big Breakfast in Glendale and another retail facility in Surprise in June.

In the third quarter, most retail construction occurred in the East and West Valley, according to report by Colliers International. About 144,070 square feet of retail space was under construction in the West Valley in Q3, while northwest Phoenix saw more than 213,000 square feet under development, according to Colliers. In total, Phoenix metro had more than 672,000 square feet of retail under construction in the third quarter.

Simon recently spoke with the Phoenix Business Journal to discuss his firm's upcoming plans and the retail market in the West Valley.

 

When did you become involved in the West Valley? 

We’ve always been pretty wide in scope in the Valley, although for a long time, the retail growth was pretty limited, and now obviously I think what you’ve seen is there’s been a lack of a huge amount of new development in retail, and now I think some of that’s catching up and certain areas have filled in. That area of Glendale [where SimonCRE plans a 42,841-square-foot center] would be an example. You’d have some green fields and then you’d have development, now you’re seeing it get infilled ... so that’s kind of brought about a lot of development.

 

What has caused the recent retail growth? 

Obviously transportation, but also housing growth, employment, and there’s a lot of industrial, the [Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.] plant, and I think it’s an affordability thing too, I think the homes have been generally more affordable in the West Valley. Then also, you kind of look at the far southeast Valley — you can get to Phoenix much faster from the west side than you can from there.

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Featured in Phoenix Business Journal on Nov. 8, 2021

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