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GILBERT, AZ-The first business park in nearly 20 years is under development in Gilbert and is expected to lure additional commercial development and new companies to the growing suburb.

Construction has begun on Fiesta Ranch Commerce Center, a 51-acre business park at the northeast corner of McQueen and Guadalupe roads. Infrastructure construction has begun on 41 lots, says Greg Tilque, director of Gilbert’s Economic Development Department. “We’ve been trying to encourage development of more business parks that are ready to go with the infrastructure in place,” Tilque tells GlobeSt.com. “Having that in place is big for us.”

Gilbert-based Payne Resources, headed by Brent Payne, is the developer. The 51-acre parcel has sat fallow for more than 15 years, when it was zoned for commercial development. But little commercial development came to the city until just a few years ago, Tilque says. Only after the city put in place some incentives, such as breaks on permit fees, to encourage speculative development did Gilbert begin to see some substantial commercial activity, he says. The speculative projects that had been built filled quickly, he says. “We are at the point of needing some more spec space,” he says.

Gilbert didn’t offer Payne Resource any incentives to build the park, but did provide expertise on solving a drainage issue on the edge of the project. The 51-acre parcel borders a 100-year flood plain and would have required each single development to build a catch basin for the waters, which would have rendered the parcel unusable. But the city suggested–and approved–a deep catch basin for nearly the entire 51 acres, Tilque says. “It took the issue away and made the land more saleable,” he says.

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