by Anne Gibson
The announcement of a combined expansion project named The Village at the UA Tech Park and the Technology Precinct using 20 acres within the 65-acre UA Tech Park at The Bridges may well be the largest development projects in the history of the Tucson area. Even better The Village is right here at the UA Tech Park within the boundaries of the Vail School District. Tech Parks of Arizona has selected Tucson-based Bourn Companies selected as the master developer of The Village. The proposed 175-acre development will include an assortment of commercial, residential, and hotel accommodations. The expansion of the tech park has for years included a hotel and conference center in its master plan.
The Village will focus on the millennial population, those from 18 to 32 years of age. It is anticipated this generation of workers will want their homes to be close to their work and will seek a more defined community in which to work and live. Studies show millennials desire a challenging workplace setting that provides a healthy environment, recreational offerings, and social opportunities.
The Village will be about $400 million when build out. It is expected to increase the size of the tech park to double its current size and to double the size of the workforce in the next 10 years. It is estimated the number of employees at the tech park will increase from the current 6,000 to exceed 14,000 by the projects completion. The housing availability will include 300 homes, many of which will be designed as upper-income housing. The upper-income design keeps pace with the average wage of tech park employees said to be $91,145 close to twice that of the Pima County average.
The UA Tech Park is one of the nation’s premier university research parks. It is located on 1,345 acres in one of the fastest growing regions of Pima County. It is located within the Vail School District, one of the state’s top performing school districts. The district’s Vail Academy and High School is in the park. Currently, 40 companies and organizations, including IBM, Citi, Raytheon and United Health Group, with over 6,000 employees are located on the site. The Park has two million square feet of office, laboratory, and production space. The park is proud of its 2.5% vacancy rate putting the park at close to occupancy capacity.
The UA Tech Park and The Bridges are owned by the Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of the University of Arizona and is operated by Tech Parks Arizona.