County approves agreement to build high-rise in downtown Tucson

County approves agreement to build high-rise in downtown Tucson
The high-rise project will be downtown Tucson's first in 30 years. (Source: Pima County)

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Tucson’s downtown skyline is about to change in a way that hasn’t happened in decades.

The Pima County Board of Supervisors approved a lease-purchase agreement with Rio Nuevo Multipurpose Facilities District for a high-rise office building at 75 E. Broadway Boulevard. The plan was approved on Tuesday, Jan. 8, with a 4-1 vote.

The Class A multi-user office space will be the first to be built in downtown Tucson in 30 years. Class A offices include top-of-the-line features, technology and designs. Economic development officials blame Tucson's lack of available Class A for the region's inability to effectively compete for business relocations and expansions.

When construction begins, Rio Nuevo will rent the property from the county for $189,000 a year, then purchase the property for $2.7 million upon completion of construction, which is expected to last two years.

Pima County paid $500,000 for the property as part of the purchse of 97 E. Congress Street in 2005.

Developer J.E. Dunn will build 150,000 to 250,000 square feet of office space and a 350-space parking garage. There will also be a mix of retail shops, restaurants and entertainment venues.

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