Northwest Arkansas developers announced Thursday (Oct. 12) a 27-acre commercial project in Springdale called Parkway Plaza that could cost $180 million to build out.
Sage Partners of Rogers and Griffin Co. Realtors of Springdale announced development just off Interstate 49, at the southeast corner of Don Tyson Parkway and Gene George Boulevard. Greg Taylor, vice president and executive broker with Griffin Co. Realtors, said the first building, a 40,000-square-foot office building, is being designed by BiLD Architects in Fayetteville, and tenants are being solicited.
A timetable to begin construction will be determined by leasing interest, Taylor said. A general contractor has not been determined.
“Now that we know where and what we are going to build, the consensus is that if we have one or more tenants that would occupy 15,000 square feet of that building, we will start,” Taylor said. “That will be the trigger. We feel confident we’ll be able to start something in the next six months, based on the interest we’re receiving and conversations we’ve had.”
The land for Parkway Plaza is owned by two groups — five acres is owned by DTP West Corner LLC (led by Brian Moore and Tim Mays) and 22 acres is owned by Southwest Springdale Forty-Nine LLC (led by Todd Wood and Ken Hall). Taylor said there have also been “several conversations” with Victory Church NWA, which owns 13.78 acres adjacent to the southeast corner of the Gene George/Don Tyson roundabout.
“They [Victory Church] are most likely not the ones that will develop that land, so it will get sold and we’ve had discussions with them,” he said. “We think there is obviously a huge opportunity for that corner and this project can help that develop. But there are no immediate plans.”
In addition to the planned office building, Taylor said Parkway Plaza will likely include an upscale hotel. Other lots will be available for ground lease or build-to-suit options, and Taylor is hoping a variety of tenants will find the location attractive. The site is less than a mile south of Arvest Ballpark, and the new Arkansas Children’s Hospital campus, scheduled to open in January.
“Restaurant, retail; could be a bank,” Taylor said. “Fitness center, vendors, third-party medical providers. We definitely have the ability to make sure we get the right mix. If we have anything on our side, it’s time.”
He said land prices will range anywhere from $8 to $14 per square foot.
“If it is built out like our designs, including the land cost, it will be a $175 to $180 million project, based on today’s cost to build,” Taylor said. “Our goal is to have a Class A, first-class mixed-use development at this site.”
Taylor and Marshall Saviers, president of Sage Partners, will lead the marketing of the property.
Taylor said a project like Parkway Plaza has been lacking in Springdale — an office/commercial address with good access and visibility to Interstate 49. The Don Tyson Parkway interchange with the interstate opened in July 2014, and connects with U.S. Highway 71 Business, a little more than two miles to the east.
Springdale city officials are now in the preliminary planning stages of extending Don Tyson Parkway less than a mile to the west, from the Gene George roundabout to Arkansas Highway 112.
“With the improvements being made to the interstate, if you’re close to it you can do business in Benton County pretty easy,” Taylor said. “If you’re not, it takes so much time to get across town. This intersection and the Don Tyson Parkway interchange is so accessible and so easy to get on and off of. It makes it convenient.”
Other commercial projects along the Interstate 49 corridor are also in various stages of development, both in Benton County. Sage Partners announced earlier this year a new office park in Bentonville called the Rice Office Complex. The 33-acre site — bordered to the north by Rice Lane and to the east by Rice Road — is along northbound Interstate 49, north of the Arkansas Highway 72 exit in Bentonville.
Sage Partners is also involved in an 18-acre development at 407 N. Goad Springs Road in Lowell, north of Metro Appliances & More. Sage Partners is partnering with an Oklahoma developer to improve the site with multiple speculative buildings of industrial/flex space.
Saviers said the site will likely have “three or four” buildings, and construction will begin early in 2018.
“What we are trying to do is have a place that will be appealing to [businesses] on the old Highway 71 corridor who want to be closer to the interstate and have a little more visibility, sort of like Metro Appliances,” Taylor said. “The logic is that more folks will want to congregate there.”
Other commercial projects along Interstate 49 include Johnson Square, just off Exit 69 in Washington County. The 74-acre New Urban development is also marketing its location as interstate-friendly, and that was part of the lure for Fayetteville law firm RMP, which will relocate next year to Johnson from its office in downtown Fayetteville.