Queen Creek board recommends approval of employment uses on 600 acres

Queen Creek board recommends approval of employment uses on 600 acres

Article Originally Posted By PhoenixBusinessJournal On November 11, 2021

The Queen Creek Planning and Zoning Commission on Wednesday evening unanimously recommended approval of a rezoning of 600 acres of Arizona State Trust Land to allow employment uses.

The site is adjacent to a larger, 915-acre site that has been identified as an option for Samsung, which is scouting locations in the United States for a $17 billion chip manufacturing plant.

At the commission meeting Wednesday evening, Carolyn Oberholtzer, attorney with Bergin, Frakes, Smalley and Oberholtzer, who is representing the Arizona State Land Department in the rezoning case, said the land must be sold at a public auction, so anyone could end up buying it, and therefore she could not identify an end user.

However, at the meeting, town staff said the state approached the town about rezoning the land soon after the adjacent parcel had been rezoned in April to allow employment uses. Town staff said any user that buys the site will also have to go through a site planning process with the town prior to building anything, and this rezoning simply will establish allowable land uses. The Town Council is scheduled to discuss the rezoning at its December 1 meeting.

The land has not been scheduled for auction yet. However, at the meeting Oberholtzer said the rezoning will help establish the “maximum value” for the land.

According to sources with knowledge of the search, Samsung has been eyeing the Queen Creek site, as well as another 1,100-acre parcel in Goodyear. The tech giant is also considering sites in the Austin, Texas metro and upstate New York.

The land adjacent to the 600 acres is scheduled to go up for auction again on Dec. 1, for a minimum bid of $86 million. The Goodyear site, which had previously been scheduled to go to auction the same day, has been rescheduled to Jan. 10, according to the Arizona State Land Department website.