The meetings culminate an 18-month effort by a steering committee of diverse stakeholders and consultants to visualize four potential scenarios for Superstition Vistas and share them with area residents to get their feedback. Each of the four scenarios includes information about its economic development potential, housing and livability profile and environmental impacts.
The two meetings are scheduled for 6:00-8:00 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 1, at The Views at Superstition in
‘Say No to Development as Usual’
“Superstition Vistas presents an extraordinary opportunity for Arizonans to say ‘no’ to development as usual,” said
The 175,000-acre swath of land owned entirely by the Arizona State Land Department is roughly the size of
“A strong local economy is a critical component of any sustainable community,” said
Attracting economic catalysts, such as a university or regional headquarters of a global business, could help jumpstart the local economy and actually create jobs ahead of housing, according to Heidi Schaefer, manager of corporate taxes for Salt River Project.
“Leading with jobs rather than housing requires significant up-front investment but provides high returns in the long term,” she stated. “It also demands that we invest the time needed to plan a sustainable 21st century community that will convince those economic drivers to locate here.”
In this model desert community, conserving water and energy will depend heavily on careful land-use planning and urban design as they pertain to housing, transportation and open space, said Jim Holway, director of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy-Sonoran Institute Joint Venture.
“Particularly with the housing mix, it’s hard to predict 50 years from now what homebuyer preferences will be,” he explained. “We also should remember that housing options change and communities redevelop over time, so that what Superstition Vistas offers in 2030 may look totally different 20 years later according to market demand.
“The bottom line is, for Arizonans, this provides an opportunity to create a vision of how we will grow as we approach our state’s centennial in 2012. What do we want our second century to look like? Superstition Vistas provides an opportunity to create a new urban center that can complement our region.”
To accomplish the comprehensive planning required for an area the size of Superstition Vistas, state law will need reforming to allow the State Land Department to implement strategic development and conservation plans, said Supervisor Bryan Martyn, Pinal County District 2.
“Without state trust land reform, we will have sprawling, piecemeal development of Superstition Vistas, and likely a lower return to the key beneficiaries of the state land trust –
Lead sponsors of the Superstition Vistas Area Planning Project are SRP, Resolution Copper Mining and the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy-Sonoran Institute Joint Venture. The consulting team is lead by Robert Grow of Robert Grow Consulting of Utah and John Fregonese of Fregonese Associates, Inc. of
(Editor’s Note: Download the Superstition Vistas Area Report and view four scenario videos at http://superstition-vistas.org/. For a CD with high-resolution videos, maps and photos, and further contact information, contact