Mayor's Radio Remarks Off-Target

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Target and Costco were invited to come to Payson by a developer who is planning a new shopping center, but both companies declined.

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Mayor Barbara Brewer gets a look at the plans for Payson's Home Depot with Ray LaHaye and LaRon Garrett in the community development office. LaHaye said he expects the building permit will be issued to the company next week.

Mayor Barbara Brewer said on the radio Tuesday that Target was coming and Costco was a possibility.

After a conversation with Bob McQueen, who handles commercial properties for Coldwell Banker Bishop Realty, she said she learned the information was not quite accurate.

"Target and Costco are not coming. Target said they included our population in their Fountain Hills store," she said.

Developers put the land in escrow and invited Target to come in as an anchor for a shopping center, she explained.

She said McQueen told her the interest wasn't there. It is her understanding the developers will look for another anchor tenant.

"I'm disappointed for the community," she said. "It would have been a boon for the town for economic development. That's the kind of revenue we need."

"We have no plans for the Payson area," said Aimee Sands, a spokesperson for Target. She said the company needs a trade population of 100,000 people for one of its stores. Currently there are 37 in Arizona and more are planned for metropolitan areas.

"Someone may have showed us property," said Jim Sinegal, president and chief executive officer of Costco, "We look at hundreds of properties. But there are no plans for a store in Payson."

He said his company needs at least 150,000 people in a service area for one of its stores. Currently Arizona has 13 Costcos, 10 in Phoenix, two in Tucson and one in Prescott.

Home Depot

Escrow on the property for the Home Depot closes today (Friday), according to McQueen.

Brewer said the company has submitted its building plans to the town. Ray LaHaye, of the community development office, said there are a couple of minor refinements needed in the plans, but he expects the company will be issued its building permit next week.

"They could be breaking ground as soon as escrow closes," McQueen said.

Attempts to get a comment from Home Depot were unsuccessful.

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