Gilbane moves forward on 277-unit student housing complex in Tempe

Project would replace a 186-room Moxy hotel half a mile from Arizona State campus

Gilbane Moves Ahead on Student Housing Complex in Tempe

A photo illustration of Gilbane CEO Thomas Gilbane along with a rendering of 1333 South Rural Road in Tempe (Gilbane Development)

Gilbane Development has moved forward with plans to build a 277-unit apartment complex for Arizona State University students in Tempe, just east of Phoenix.

Tempe’s Development Review Commission recommended approving the eight-story student housing complex at 1333 South Rural Road, the Phoenix Business Journal reported. A 186-room Moxy hotel would be demolished.

Plans by the Rhode Island-based developer led by Thomas Gilbane call for a 578,800-square-foot complex known as Vale Student Housing, with mostly two- and four-bedroom apartments, with some studio, one- and three-bedroom units. 

The project, designed by Phoenix-based Todd & Associates, would include what appears to be concrete frames around banks of inset windows trimmed in gray and ochre, according to a rendering. The bottom two stories would be clad in aquamarine panels.

The Tempe City Council will consider the proposed student housing, a half mile south of the ASU Tempe campus, at an undisclosed date.

The student housing would replace the four-story Moxy Phoenix Tempe/ASU Area hotel, which was opened in 2016 by Moxy by Marriott International for millennials and business travelers. It was the first Moxy-branded hotel in the U.S.

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The 99,000-square-foot hotel, built in 1970 and renovated in 2017, was once home to the Four Points by Sheraton hotel, according to the Business Journal.

The 3.9-acre site includes a CVS Pharmacy, which wouldn’t be touched by the proposed student apartments. 

It’s not clear when Gilbane bought the property, and for what price.

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Gilbane Development is a unit of Gilbane, a family firm founded in 1870 by the son of Irish immigrants. The builder of affordable and student housing has $8.5 billion in completed or ongoing projects, including 25,000 homes, according to its website.

The firm’s other Tempe projects include a 164-unit affordable workforce housing complex and a 326-unit mixed-use complex designed for ASU students, according to its website.

— Dana Bartholomew

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