Metrocenter is Expected to Be Demolished. Here’s What’s Going in Its Place.

photo of the outside of the front of Metrocenter mall with sign

(Shutterstock Photo/Thomas Trompeter)

By Jessica Swarner

January 5, 2022

Work is underway on a Valley Metro light rail station, scheduled to open in 2024, right on the property.

Goodbye, Metrocenter. Hello, walkable village. 

Concord Wilshire Capital and TLG Investment Partners, two out-of-state real estate development firms, announced last month they plan to invest $750 million in redeveloping the shuttered Phoenix mall into a residential and mixed-use community. 

The 68-acre property near Interstate 17 and Peoria Avenue will include apartment buildings with 2,600 units as well as stores, restaurants, a park, an amphitheater, and more. 

A number of the apartment buildings will be considered “workforce” or “attainable” housing, meaning they will be available to residents who make between 80 and 120% of the area’s median income. For a two-person household, that’s $50,600 to $75,840, or between $63,200 and $94,800 for a four-person household. 

Angie Holdsworth, a spokesperson for the city of Phoenix, told The Copper Courier that price points for the apartments and number of units are not yet known, but that the developer plans to build “many housing units” at these prices. 

“Based on discussions with the Developer, they are aware of the immense market demand in the area for housing that is both available and attainable at rents our workforce can afford,” Holdsworth said.

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The Metrocenter mall, which opened in 1973 and officially closed last summer, is expected to be demolished in 2022. It was noteworthy for being featured in the 1989 film “Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure.” 

Construction on the new development is set to begin in 2023, and the first phase of construction will take three to five years to complete. 

The development will be very accessible to public transit—work is underway on a Valley Metro light rail station, scheduled to open in 2024, right on the property.

The property will include around 4,100 parking spaces and up to seven garage decks for residents, visitors, and those using the light rail park-and-ride. 

The property’s land is considered an Opportunity Zone, a federal designation for “economically distressed communities” where developers can qualify for tax incentives if they invest in new development there.  

“The well-thought-out design concept for the new Metrocenter embodies the definition of a modern community with retail stores, restaurants, public transportation, entertainment and housing all within the ‘Village,’” Phoenix Councilwoman Ann O’Brien said in a statement. “…The ‘Village’ will not only present something new to visitors and future residents but will also preserve notable characteristics that will invoke nostalgia for many of us.”

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  • Jessica Swarner

    Jessica Swarner is the community editor for The Copper Courier. She is an ASU alumna and previously worked at KTAR News 92.3 FM in Phoenix.

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