You may have noticed an abnormal amount of construction over the last few months at intersections in the Arcadia area. This community has become one of the most sought after places to live in the Valley and dozens of retailers and property owners are eager to become part of the neighborhood attractions.  

“Arcadia has nice parks, it’s right near Camelback Mountain,” said Phoenix Planning and Development Director Alan Stephenson. “There’s natural desert open space. There are lots of great amenities throughout. It’s not too far from downtown Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tempe but also far enough to be its own space.” 

The success and growth of the neighborhood bring with them change. But Stephenson notes that this change is probably for the best. 

“There are always going to be people adverse to change,” said Stephenson. “But for the most part, we live in a world where investment in a community is a good thing. New amenities in the area will help with the overall quality of life. It’s better to be a city where people want to invest than a place where no one wants to.” 



Brice Samuel doesn’t beat around the bush when asked about the strengths of the property on the southwest corner of Indian School and 44th Street. 

“Location, location, location,” said the vice president of Samuel & Company, Inc. “It’s one of the best intersections in the Arcadia area. Seventy thousand vehicles a day go through that intersection.” 

Samuel & Company has owned the property since 1976, which was most recently an apartment complex. Now the location will be transformed into a multi-tenant retail facility that will be known as the Arcadia Gateway Shopping Center. 

“The apartment complex had honestly gone beyond its useful life,” said Samuel. “So we had to decide what we wanted to do next with the location. Did we want to put in new apartments or have a fresh start?”

Among the options considered were renovated apartments, office buildings and a mix of apartments and retail. In the end, Samuel & Company decided to go with a purely retail property, citing return on the cost of construction and the booming nearby businesses as some deciding factors. 

The Arcadia Gateway Shopping Center will have over 30,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space and many tenants have already signed a lease. The location will feature a host of well-known names including Smashburger, Zoë’s Kitchen, Sports Clips, European Wax Center and Elements Massage, among others. 

“There’s just a lot to love about the spot,” said Samuel. “The neighborhood around it is great, it’s right down the street from Arcadia High School. It’s not right off a freeway, but it’s also not far from the 51 or the 202, so you can get to it from other parts of town.” 

One of the most anticipated tenants scheduled to occupy a spot at Arcadia Gateway doesn’t even have a name yet. Fox Restaurant Concepts, whose array of popular Phoenix area restaurants include Culinary Dropout, True Food and Flower Child, will open their newest creation on the east side of the shopping center. 

The Fox eatery won’t be open until early 2017 but many of its fellow tenants won’t wait that long. According to Samuel, the first round of retail openings will be in September, with several stores opening their doors to Arcadia customers by the middle of the month. 



Many of the new tenants coming to the Arcadia area will be part of retail centers, where they will share space with a large variety of other stores and restaurants. A benefit of this setup is foot traffic, customers shopping at one store who venture into another because of its close proximity. 

Other shops take a different approach. This is the case with Gadzooks, a make-it-yourself enchilada and soup restaurant opening near the corner of 40th and Camelback. Their first location was a stand-alone at 7th Street and Osborn, and owner Aaron Pool has no desire to change things up. 

“We want to be by ourselves,” said Pool, who opened the first Gadzooks in 2013. “The goal is for Gadzooks to be a destination and not to need another tenant to drive traffic. It’s a much more costly endeavor but we believe we will be rewarded over time for taking the risk.” 

When it came to choosing a location for the second Gadzooks, Pool wanted a place that was close enough to the original restaurant to be identifiable as a brand but far enough away to be on its own. He also looked for an area with nearby neighborhoods and families. 

“We’re close enough to downtown Phoenix where a lot of our customers are professionals,” said Pool. “Sixty percent of our traffic is the lunch time crowd, who then commute back to where they live. But what we noticed was that on weekends we would get those same professionals bringing their kids back to Gadzooks. If there was a closer location to families, our night time traffic would boost quite dramatically.” 

The 40th and Camelback location drew Pool’s eye for a number of reasons. Right off the bat, he saw one clear similarity between that spot and his original location at 7th and Osborn. Just as that location feeds drivers to the downtown area, the 40th and Camelback location sits directly between the Scottsdale Fashion Square shops and the Biltmore Fashion Park. 

“We looked at traffic count when we opened the original location,” said Pool. “So nothing had happened on that corner yet, but it was still a main artery of downtown Phoenix. Even if people didn’t want to know you, they had to know you because they’re going to pass by your sign everyday. With the Arcadia place, it’s a similar situation.” 

One unique feature of the new Gadzooks location will be the canal running alongside it. One of the few places with a canal behind it is O.S.H.O. at 49th and Indian School, which is known for joggers and dog walkers stopping buy for a quick beer. Pool envisions a similar type of atmosphere at the 40th and Camelback Gadzooks. 

“With the canal, you get joggers, bike riders, people out for a walk,” said Pool. “It becomes an easily accessible destination for families not only by car but also by foot.”

Fortieth Street has developed a reputation for unique stand-alone restaurants in the Arcadia neighborhood. Gadzooks will join a lineup that includes Chelsea’s Kitchen, Ingo’s, La Grande Orange and Sam Fox’s North Italia. What many would view as an intimidating row of competitors, Pool views as an advantage, noting that the goal is for Gadzooks to become a main player in the Arcadia food scene. 

The new location will be near the southeast corner of the intersection and at 2,100 square feet will be larger than the first location. The opening date is expected to be in late 2016 or early 2017. 



There’s no question that the downtown area of Phoenix has gone through a kind of renaissance in the last several years, and the ripple effects can be felt all the way to the western neighborhoods of Arcadia. 

“The Arcadia area has gone through a kind of resurgence,” said Linda Whitlow, director of marketing and public relations for De Rito Partners. “It’s close to downtown, you’ve got young families relocating. It’s been great for the neighborhood.” 

“I think there’s been development in a lot of areas that are close to downtown,” said Alan Stephenson. “More than ever, these communities are becoming desirable places to live.” 

One of the primary shopping spaces in the west Arcadia area was the retail center located on the southwest corner of 32nd and Indian School. This location housed a Food City, Ace Hardware, O-Reilly Automotive and was, according to Whitlow, in dire need of a fresh start. 

“It just needed to be completely redone,” said Whitlow. “The whole property needed renovations from top to bottom.” 

Half of the shopping center was empty by the time De Rito Partners stepped in to buy the center in 2014. The property will be called Arcadia Fiesta and the center is being remodeled with new storefronts and a refurbished parking lot. A couple of original tenants – including O-Reilly Automotive and Ace Hardware – will stay on, but will update their exteriors. New additions will include Ross, Anytime Fitness, Fantastic Sam’s and Salon Boutique. Tuesday Morning is already open in the center, having moved from its old location at 36th and Indian School. 

“There’s going to be a number of new restaurants as well,” said Whitlow. “There will be a Dutch Brothers, a Popeyes and a McDonalds.” 

New tenants is only a part of the project because the goal is to give a complete overhaul to a property that could become one of the shining retail jewels in the area. 

“It’s going to be a complete renovation,” said Whitlow. “All new facade, all new landscaping, new presentation to the street, new palm trees. It’s very exciting and will greatly upgrade the neighborhood.”



Jason Eisenberg was born and raised in Arcadia and knows the area well. The vice president of acquisition development for Eisenberg Company always wanted to do a redevelopment in his home town and was on the lookout for a property that fit the bill. 

“I’d always wanted to find a large enough parcel in Arcadia to play around in and do a cool redevelopment,” said Eisenberg. “The 40th and Indian School location had everything you look for. Good incomes in the neighborhoods, excellent traffic and a walkability factor.” 

So how did Eisenberg get hold of his dream property? 

“I basically called the guy who owns it every month for three years,” he laughed. 

The property was previously the site of a funeral home and Eisenberg Company decided against adaptive reuse of the building, choosing instead to build from the ground up. What will appear is a high-end retail center that includes several restaurants, all of which as Eisenberg notes are first to market. 

One tenant will be the California based Eureka!, which specializes in gourmet burgers and includes a craft bar. Nearby will be Tacos Tequila Whiskey, serving modern Mexican street food and whose first location was in Denver, Colorado. Also included at the property will be Even Stevens sandwich shop from Salt Lake City, whose sandwiches come with a cause. 

“For every sandwich sold, they donate a sandwich to a local nonprofit,” said Eisenberg. “It’s a really cool concept.” 

Other non-foodie tenants will occupy space as well, including a yoga studio. Construction began in August and the schedule will move fast toward making Eisenberg’s dream a reality. The space will reportedly be 100 percent occupied on opening day, which should be sometime in February or March of 2017. 



Not every new addition to the Arcadia area is being built for entertainment purposes. Residents near 44th and Osborn will have a new neighborhood medical facility, built by HonorHealth. 

“We were looking for properties so that we [could] create an extensive ambulatory center,” said HonorHeath Senior Vice President Nathan Anspach. “We’re in the process of opening two ambulatory centers like this and six to eight primary offices a year.” 

Anspach says major ambulatory centers like this one usually have 10 to 15 primary care physicians, physical therapists and subspecialists. He also notes that they will have immediate care and it could be a big benefit for local patients. 

“It’s great for patients because when they go to urgent care, the copay can be $100 to $200,” said Anspach. “The copay is much lower for immediate care at one of our ambulatory centers, sometimes $20 to $25.”

The 27,000-square-foot location previously housed a bank, along with two other buildings, which were a variety of different offices. The bank building was already empty and HonorHealth chose to start completely over on the building. The two office spots will become part of the ambulatory center, as will the underground parking already built. Anspach believes the site should be near completion in December. 

HonorHealth isn’t new to the Arcadia community, with physician practices already established at 24th and Indian School. The success of locations like that one made the choice to continue serving the neighborhood an easy one. 

“The centers in Arcadia have been extremely successful,” said Anspach. “We feel very fortunate we’ve gotten to have a presence in the community and that everything has worked so well. We’re really excited to continue it with the new location.”