Vistancia’s commercial core
Artist’s rendition of Main Street in Vistancia’s commercial core
Vistancia plots 506-acre commercial core
(Daily News-Sun, June 16, 2006) — The 506 acres to serve as Vistancia’s commercial core have been proposed as a regional destination with concentrated retail, internet ip tv box, office space and homes for a more urban feel.
Also proposed is a 60-acre medical campus that would grow in stages, much like the rest of the commercial core, beginning first with emergency treatment and medical clinic services, said Curt Smith, CEO of Sunbelt Holdings, which developed Vistancia in partnership with Shea Homes Arizona. The developers hope to draw a number of large-scale businesses and medical-related employment centers that would settle around the medical campus.
“It would be combining a lot of mixed uses, like, for example, office and residential units situated above street-level retail,” Smith said.
“As the city looked at the Loop 303 corridor plan, it identified Vistancia as the most logical place for a regional commercial and business core area,” Smith said. “We concur in our planning, and we are giving priority to the 303 or at least the three interchanges that service the immediate area.”
“I think this plan has a lot of the elements we are trying to get,” said Glen Van Nimwegen, community development director in Peoria.
Housing would be a variety of apartments and condominiums sprinkled among the retail, commercial and office uses. The Discovery Trail system that runs throughout Vistancia would be extended to connect to the community park, medical campus and activity on Lone Mountain Road.
“A development of this nature is a long-term project,” Smith said. “It is not just something we start building and in three years it’s completed. The initial phases will be lower intensity uses that will be added to as the area builds up.” In the next few months, Peoria’s planning department will be working to refine the plan before bringing it to planning and zoning and the council for approval, which likely will be at the end of the year, Smith said.
“This is the type of development we really need to start seeing,” said Steve Prokopek, economic development director. “As the land value goes up, the more we do with the land that we have is better overall.” Prokopek said he believes one of the only potential problems with the development is keeping southern Peoria connected to this type of development.
“The people coming from outside of north Peoria need to enjoy these facilities and feel like they have ownership in the area,” he said.