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KAFB mixed-use development again moving forward as lease is signed

Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal

A major mixed-use development that’s been in the works for two years on Kirtland Air Force Base is moving forward once again, according to a news release from the developer.

Thunderbird Kirtland Development LLC has signed a formal lease with the U.S. Air Force for MaxQ at Kirtland, a sprawling office, laboratory and retail complex planned on more than 70 acres south of Gibson between Carlisle and Truman – just down the road from the Orion Center campus that received site plan approval Thursday afternoon from Albuquerque’s Environmental Planning Commission.

MaxQ at Kirtland is expected to include more than 2 million square feet of office, laboratory and retail space outside the military fence.

Thunderbird Kirtland Development expects to break ground in early 2021. The first phase of construction will include about 20 acres east of Carlisle, and “is proposed to be a mixed-use ‘town center’-styled development with retail, drive-thru, hotel, restaurants, office and research and development space,” the release said.

Confirmed tenants have yet to be announced. NAI Maestas & Ward is handling leasing and build-to-suit options for the complex, and Resolute RE is handling retail leasing, the release said. The development is being designed by local architecture firm Dekker/Perich/Sabatini.

The development is made possible through a Department of Defense program that allows the military to lease under-utilized military base land to the private sector for redevelopment, according to earlier reports. The project was originally unveiled in late 2018. Developers at that point hoped to start construction by early 2019.

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