RIO RANCHO, NM-Making its first New Mexico land play, a New York City and Florida company have joined forces to acquire 47 acres in the 443-acre mixed-use Loma Colorado project. The plan is to build a 350,000-sf retail center with an all-in development cost of roughly $50 million.

“Rio Rancho has been experiencing tremendous population growth, but there’s a lack of retail shopping alternatives. Everyone has to drive the 15 minutes to Albuquerque,” says Joshua Pristaw, managing director with GoldenTree InSite Partners of New York City, which is the equity partner for Midland Development Group of Jacksonville for the project. He says that a ground-breaking date on the still-unnamed center at Northern Boulevard and 40th Street has not yet been determined.

Pristaw tells GlobeSt.com that a specific tenant mix hasn’t been determined for the center, but the developers are receiving inquiries from big-box retailers as well as smaller boutique shops and restaurants. He expects construction and stabilization to take about 18 months. “We’re optimistic there will be sufficient tenant demand to build the whole project at once rather than in phases,” he adds. “We like the demographic profile of Albuquerque and would be interested in investing more capital there.”

The master-planned Loma Colorado, just north of Albuquerque, is being developed by Pulte Homes of New Mexico. The developer has 33 additional acres earmarked for non-residential projects in the 443-acre development.

The land sale was brokered by Albuquerque-based Grubb & Ellis/New Mexico’s SVP and principal Bob Feinberg and vVP Tom Jones. A project architect, general contractor and leasing manager have not been selected.

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