Monday, February 26, 2007

Plan centers on Hayden Flour Mill in Tempe

[Source: Garin Groff, East Valley Tribune] -- The Hayden Flour Mill stood as one of Tempe’s most visible buildings for more than a century even as its thick concrete walls masked its inner workings from public view. But the elaborate milling equipment that turned grain into flour will be on display in a glass structure next to the mill as part of a plan to restore and redevelop the site. The proposal includes adding three stories of glass floors on top of the mill and new buildings for shops and restaurants. But most building space will be the new headquarters for the developer, Avenue Communities. That’s the same company behind the 30-story Centerpoint Condominiums a few blocks away.

Avenue is moving to buy the site from Tempe, which took ownership after another developer’s plan fizzled and the city received the property in the midst of an extended lawsuit. City and business leaders are hopeful the developer will finally bring life to the mill since its 1998 closure. “They’ve done everything that the city has asked them to do and they’re doing it in a very high-quality way,” said Chris Salomone, Tempe’s community development manager. Avenue will present its plans to the City Council Thursday. The company plans to demolish half-century old additions so the 1918 structure will stand as it did originally. Also, Avenue will build a trailhead to Hayden Butte, add parking and buildings along the street to give the area a more urban feel.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo by Leigh Shelle Robertus.]