2,500 Acres Sold by Arizona State Land Department for 'Science Park' Near Phoenix TSMC

CEO Khai Intela
An Exciting New Development Set to Boost Employment Corridors in Phoenix Nearly 2,500 acres of land neighboring the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) campus in far north Phoenix are slated to be sold at auction...

An Exciting New Development Set to Boost Employment Corridors in Phoenix

Nearly 2,500 acres of land neighboring the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) campus in far north Phoenix are slated to be sold at auction in late May. This bold move is expected to contribute to the creation of one of the largest employment corridors in the state, as stated by city economic development officials.

The developer of the nearby TSMC supplier sites, Mack Real Estate Group, has submitted an application to the Arizona State Land Department to purchase the land situated on the northwest side of Loop 303 and Interstate 17. The applicant listed on public documents is an entity of Mack called Biscuit Flats Dev LLC. It's worth noting that while Mack is the primary applicant, other entities are also allowed to bid. The minimum bid for the land is set at $56.28 million, with the auction scheduled for May 29.

Aerial map of the land to be sold An aerial map shows a roughly 2,350-acre parcel that the Arizona State Land Department plans to sell at auction on May 29. The non-shaded piece north of Loop 303 is owned by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.

At present, a representative from Mack has declined to comment on the pending auction. This particular site was included in a 3,500-acre zoning case in 2020 known as the "Sonoran Oasis Science and Technology Park." TSMC's campus is also part of this extensive site, having acquired 1,128 acres there in late 2020.

The zoning case allows for advanced manufacturing uses across most of the large site. Specifically, the northwestern portion of the site is zoned for a "technology park," permitting administration, design, manufacturing, and other employment uses. The area along I-17 is zoned as "freeway mixed-use," enabling employment uses, regional commercial, office, hospitality, multifamily development, and other amenities such as restaurants.

According to Chris Mackay, the community and economic development director for Phoenix, the city has been collaborating with the state land department for some time regarding this site. Furthermore, discussions with Mack about the development have been taking place.

A Strong Boost to Employment

"The goal of bringing TSMC there was to make the science and tech park like (TSMC headquarters location) Hsinchu in Taiwan," stated Mackay. It's expected that the 3,500-acre site, inclusive of TSMC's campus, will eventually provide around 50,000 jobs, establishing itself as one of the largest employment corridors in the state. Currently, downtown and midtown Phoenix, the state's largest employment corridor, is home to approximately 173,000 jobs.

Mackay revealed that the city has been in contact with companies within the semiconductor manufacturing industry, as well as other advanced manufacturing companies in different sectors like batteries and electric vehicles. These companies have shown interest in setting up operations in the tech park. "By attracting these jobs, we are transforming the economy in Phoenix," added Mackay, highlighting that the average wage for the jobs being pursued is $83,000.

With regards to the 2,500 acres up for sale, Mackay believes it will take between 10 and 20 years to reach full buildout. The 3,500-acre technology park site is part of a larger 12,000-acre site called Biscuit Flats, which is under the control of the Arizona State Land Department. In the future, the department may sell parcels to developers.

Applicant's Impressive Track Record

Mack Real Estate Group has been highly active in north Phoenix in recent years. In 2021, the company acquired land in north Phoenix that the city had designated as "supplier sites" for TSMC's facility near Seventh Avenue and Pinnacle Peak Road. These sites, now known as the Mack Innovation Park, have room for approximately 3.5 million square feet of buildings.

Rendering of the Sunlit Chemical factory in north Phoenix Rendering of the Sunlit Chemical factory in north Phoenix.

To date, Mack has completed roughly 900,000 square feet of buildings on these sites and has recently broken ground on an additional 400,000 square feet. Sunlit Chemical, one of the first semiconductor suppliers to establish a presence in the Valley following TSMC's land acquisition, purchased a site for its plant from Mack.

For inquiries, please contact Corina Vanek at [email protected]. You can also follow her on X, formerly Twitter: @CorinaVanek.

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