By Orlando Acevedo Economic Development Manager
Get a Slice
(Victor Valley)–The Town of Apple Valley continues to carry forward its economic development objectives. A team led by Town Manager Frank Robinson recently exhibited an Apple Valley booth and marketed a number of available commercial properties at the International Council of Shopping Centers retail conference in San Diego. The list of hot properties included a 40,000 square-foot former Ralphs’ grocery store in the geographic and civic center of town; the Fountains at Quail Ridge, a planned mixed-use center at a major intersection along the Yucca Loma Bridge Corridor; and, finally, a prime 4,300 square foot restaurant on a 47,000 square foot site, for lease at the most successful non-freeway intersection in the region, at Bear Valley and Apple Valley roads.
Proving the local retail market is rebounding, Jess Ranch Marketplace recently confirmed the regional commercial center has attracted the high desert’s first Ulta, a beauty retailer with nearly 500 stores nationwide. The 10,000 square foot store will open adjacent to Best Buy, Bed Bath and Beyond, Cinemark Theaters, and 24 Hour Fitness and will feature skin and hair care, cosmetics, fragrances, and a full-service salon. In addition, a new Denny’s restaurant will soon open adjacent to Red Robin.
Dollar General recently held its grand opening, one of the first seven to open in California, in a neighborhood lacking grocery and general merchandise stores.
As Walmart Supercenters open around the High Desert, a court challenge still remains regarding Apple Valley’s approved store. Although a firm start date has not been set, the store is expected to open in 2013 on Dale Evans Parkway directly across from Lewis Retail Center’s Apple Valley Commons, anchored by Super Target. Randall Lewis, EVP of Sales and Marketing, recently interviewed in Globe St., said of the close proximity of these two retailers, “It’s definitely a positive because it will bring more retail (critical mass) to the intersection, and we expect that it will also attract new customers from some of the outlying areas of the High Desert, such as Barstow, which should help create new tenant interest in Apple Valley Commons from those retailers looking for a more regional draw. As a side note, this is also a relocation of an existing Walmart that is currently across the street from our center.”
During the last seven years the Town attracted more than 3.5 million square feet of new retail, created by leading development companies, including Lewis Retail Centers and Malcom Riley and Associates.
Most recently, Apple Valley has seen eight consecutive quarters of sales tax revenue growth and since July 2011 issued 110 certificates of occupancy for new establishments, improvements, and expansions.
Yucca Loma Bridge
While the dissolution of redevelopment agencies in California was a potential roadblock to this key piece of the High Desert regional transportation plan, Apple Valley was successful in keeping the funding intact. Although some details remain to be finalized with state and county agencies, the Town expects to award the contract for construction management in October 2012. The next steps will be the approval and issuance of bid documents.
Once under construction, the $31 million dollar Yucca Loma Bridge over the Mojave River will take approximately 24 months to complete. With the required improvements to Yucca Loma Road and Yates Road scheduled to be completed simultaneously with the new bridge, opening day should occur in 2015.