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More retail coming to Jefferson-Osuna

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Construction on the next phase of Independence Square should begin in the next 60 days for future tenants looking to locate at the site at Jefferson and Osuna.

Nearly a year after landlord Argus Investment Realty turned over the keys to Lovelace Medical Group for its new clinic at Independence Square, Scott Throckmorton, owner and president of Argus, said the development team is moving forward on building two retail pads. He estimated development costs in the $5 million range.

The city’s development review board on Wednesday was expected to weigh in on a site plan prior to the issuance of a building permit at the 1.7-acre site.

Argus’ leasing team has been courting prospective tenants for the 8,000-square pads fronting Jefferson and a third retail strip, which is designed for businesses needing drive-thru lanes.

Throckmorton said he hopes to have signed leases with several tenants, most likely to include restaurant operators, in the next few weeks. He added the company wouldn’t be spending so much money upfront on construction without some guarantee of tenant commitments.

“We’ve got a whole lot of different businesses looking at that frontage,” said Throckmorton, adding the arrival of Lovelace has generated a “whole bunch of interest.”

Future tenants are drawn to the significant traffic generated by Lovelace, which employs several hundred people as well as serving over 200 visitors a day. Calvary Church, one of the area’s largest church facilities with daily activities, is another source of future customers.

Throckmorton described the design of the single-level structures that will soon rise as “Mid-Century Modern.” The lower building height is to enhance Lovelace clinic’s visiblity from the road.

Dekker/Perich/Sabatini architects will design the building and the general contractor will be HB Construction.

Throckmorton also is part of an investment team behind a nearly block-long development in the Downtown area that will include seven stories of retail space, offices and apartments. The project has won initial approval for $30 million in metropolitan redevelopment bonds.

The Albuquerque Development Commission has recommended city councilors approve the request for the Bank of the West Center project at Lomas and Third. The development includes the former Bank of America building at 303 Roma NW and a 3/4-acre tract at Third and Lomas.