Planners are envisioning 8,000 to 12,000 future jobs at Continuum, a 153-acre, master planned science and technology park being developed along west Chandler’s Price Corridor by Capital Commercial Investments of Austin, Texas.
City economic-development officials say that Continuum will advance the vision of the corridor as a “super technology” region, which they hope will reinforce Chandler’s efforts to remain competitive on an international scale.
At build-out, the Continuum complex is expected to generate $250 million to $300 million a year in primary economic impacts.
Located on the site of a onetime Motorola property on Price Road just north of Queen Creek Road, Continuum will provide headquarters for a University of Arizona learning center to conduct programs, classes and research, as well as other high-end tenants now being recruited.
The 10,000-square-foot space will be provided to U of A at no cost by developer CCI, an agreement that is predicted to represent a saving to the university of more than $2 million over a 10-year period.
Continuum will be the second high-tech research and development facility in west Chandler, joining the new Innovations incubator opened in April.
“With the critical component of a leading research university and the draw of well-paid, sustainable jobs, we see this (Continuum) partnership advancing the city’s emergence from the recession,” Chandler Mayor Boyd Dunn said.
“And as a significant anchor to the robust Price Corridor, Continuum will further diversify Chandler’s already solid employment base.”
U of A, the first tenant recruited for the complex for far, will meet the educational needs of Chandler’s high-tech workforce by offering programs and research, as well as recruiting other educational institutions, said Dunn.
Mike Proctor, dean of U of A’s Outreach College, said, “We’re really proud to be a part of this profound development and to have a chance to make an impact on this part of the state. The U of A has been connected to the people of Chandler for many years, from its early days as an agricultural community to its present day as a leading high technology center in the state and region.”
To further encourage the location of signature companies and high-wage jobs, the city of Chandler is participating in the building of public roadways and public infrastructure in an amount not to exceed $10 million.
This will help create public roads and sidewalks, water features, landscaping and public gathering spaces to create a sense of place, say officials.
CCI plans to use about 30 acres to create these enhancements that will serve as amenities for employees and presumably make Continuum more attractive to businesses. The investment firm, based in Austin, Texas, owns almost 50 large commercial and industrial complexes throughout the Southwest.
In west Chandler, Continuum will join notable employers in the key industries of aerospace, life sciences, high technology, research and development, manufacturing and advanced business services.
The Science and Technology Park will focus on technology, innovation and corporate headquarters.
Price Corridor is credited for developing the high-tech manufacturing industry across the state and key to the location and continued expansion of Intel as Air Products invested in an ultra-pure nitrogen pipeline through the corridor.
Continued investment by the city of Chandler and others in infrastructure, including high capacity wet utilities, power and telecom and industrial power infrastructure, are said to make the Price Corridor competitive on an international plain.
The area extends six miles along the western portion of Chandler. Its commercial real estate mix includes Class A office, executive office suites, light industrial parks, mixed-use projects and corporate and technology campus settings.
Average household income within the area is $92,215, and the current population is 56,095, with expected build-out population rising to 64,326.
A portion of Chandler’s Enterprise Zone is located within the corridor.
Key employers include Amkor Technology, Bank of America, Freescale, Hanjin Shipping, Intel, Isagenix, Isola, Microchip Technologies, Orbital Sciences, Rogers Corporation and Wells Fargo.