Downtown Tucson development back to pre-pandemic levels

KOLD News 5:30-6 p.m. Sundays recurring
Published: Mar. 23, 2022 at 6:54 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The Rio Nuevo board says it’s back to pre-pandemic sales tax revenue and that calls to build downtown are as robust as ever.

“I think not only did we survive but it’s clear to me that we will probably thrive,” said Board Chair Fletcher McCusker at the beginning of the March 23 meeting.

McCusker says the interest in building downtown is as high as ever.

“We’re seeing hotel operators, one or two a week, we’re seeing multi family developers, we’re seeing restaurateurs,” he said.

While the board is seeing a plethora of new ideas coming forward asking for help, some bigger, older proposed developments will also see new life.

75 E. Broadway, a 19 story retail and commercial development is close to a deal after two failures in recent years.

The Ronstadt Transit Center is close to a makeover nearly seven years in the making. The developer says its in the design phase and could break ground before the year is out.

Two new hotels have been built at the Tucson Convention Center. The TCC has undergone a $100 million expansion. The La Placita Village has been replaced by The Flin, a luxury apartment complex.

Smaller projects like The Citizen Hotel will be getting a Rio Nuevo half million dollar infusion to finish construction.

Other projects like a new event center on 6th, an expansion of the Highwire restaurant and buildout of Arizona Avenue are all being considered.

“Buckle your seat belts,” said McCusker. “We’re really going to be busy in the next year, two years.”

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