Winning picks

Arizona is one of the first states to receive federal approval for 168 “opportunity zones.” Handpicked by the governor, they include downtowns, industrial and air parks, and land near transportation corridors. Businesses and individuals who invest in these low-income areas can reduce capital gains taxes based on how long their investments are held.

“Opportunity Zones promise to be an excellent vehicle to encourage investment that will uplift communities,” said Sandra Watson, President and CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority. “Through this program, investors have the ability to make a real difference. We’ve already seen so much interest in participating, from investors to businesses to the philanthropic community. It’s wonderful to see so many work together to change the lives of Arizonans.”

Gov. Doug Ducey was charged with whittling down hundreds of suggestions from communities and the commerce authority. The final cut includes downtowns in Glendale, Mesa and Tucson. Here are some favorites from economic development directors and staff across the state:

Maricopa County

The Falcon District in Mesa is a high-tech center with Falcon Field Airport as an anchor for aerospace/aviation, defense, advanced manufacturing, and advanced business services. It is home to companies like Boeing, MD Helicopters, Aeromaritime, GECO, Orbital ATK, Nammo Talley, Trans-Matic, and Able Steel.

Glendale Centerline Overlay District is a redevelopment district along Glendale Avenue and  downtown. There is potential for urban residential and retail, entertainment, and commercial offices. This area is about five miles from the sports and entertainment district that houses the University of Phoenix Stadium.

Lower Grand Avenue in Phoenix is just west of downtown and runs diagonally northwest through several cities. It is an emerging arts and shopping district with business owners and the city working to create an attractive walkable streetscape and preserve existing buildings.

Mesa Gateway Area Anchored by Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, this is a 35-square-mile developing aerotropolis for international companies, aerospace/aviation and defense firms, research and development, high-tech manufacturers, data centers, large industrial users, and educational institutions.

Pecos advanced manufacturing zone in Mesa offers power, land, water, natural gas, fiber, market access, a streamlined entitlement process, and a Foreign Trade Zone. Neighboring companies include CMC Steel, Fujifilm Chemical and Bridgestone Americas. Available for general/heavy industrial, light industrial, business-park, and commercial uses.

Mohave County

Bullhead City fieldhouse The Colorado River Union High School District is building a new $32.5 million fieldhouse. It is expected to draw retail to the area. The site is adjacent an extension of the Bullhead Parkway which will connect to the new bridge linking the road to Needles Highway in Laughlin.

Griffith Logistics Hub is along I-40 about 20 miles from Kingman with 1,020 acres zoned for commercial development. It’s intended for transportation distribution industries. It is 40 minutes from the California border crossing.

Kingman Industrial Park is adjacent to Kingman Airport and near I-40 with development potential for  airport support service industries and aviation-related businesses. The city recently took over management of the airport and park. Both are undergoing improvements. Plans are to remodel the airport terminal.

Pima County

Sonoran Corridor The proposed highway to connect interstates 10 and 19 that go to Mexico is close to the airport, the Port of Tucson, and the only rail line on the Union Pacific in Arizona. It is ideal for defense, aerospace and manufacturing industries.

Pinal County

Pinal Airpark is a 1,500-acre property on the border of Pinal and Pima counties a few miles west of I-10. The airport is seeking aviation-related businesses including avionics manufacturing, airframe maintenance, power plant maintenance, painting and warehousing parts. The county manages the airport. 

Yavapai County

Camp Verde A nine-mile stretch of State Route 260 is being refurbished that will benefit the town. New developments are starting to arrive and the town is pursuing more retail, commercial and industrial development. It is close to I-17, the Verde River, and 13 wineries.  

Victoria Harker

1 comment

  • Excellent information on all the potential areas for new businesses to
    grow in Phoenix metropolitan area.

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