Prescott Valley Not The Little Brother Anymore

Prescott Valley Not The Little Brother Anymore

If you look at the Quad-Cities region of most maps of Arizona one name stands out.

Prescott.

Makes sense, since it has historical ties to the founding of the state, and it has theWorld's Oldest Rodeo, and it has the biggest population.

Not so fast.

Prescott Valley town officials announced earlier this month that its populationhas surpassed its neighbor based on 2014 U.S. Census Bureau estimates.

The Prescott Valley population, according to the count, sits at 41,075. Prescott's is 40,958.

And it's unlikely that Prescott will ever be able to catch its neighbor, being limited in how much it can grow by all the hills. PV, being a valley, has lots of room to grow and town officials say it is possible the town could one day double the populationof Prescott.

Town officials now tally their populationcloser to 44,000 based on internal counts and its utility customer base.

Town Manager Larry Tarkowski said that an emerging trend shows Prescott Valley continues growing younger with its working families that make up a large portion of the population.

"We have the only community in Yavapai County that is growing younger. The other communities are getting older," Tarkowski said.

He said the emergence of younger citizens may be in part because the town always has encouraged and embraced working, young families.

Economic Development Director Greg Fister said that younger people are not looking to buy houses, rather they want apartments in Prescott Valley.

"It's market driven," Fister said.

He mentioned that the Prescott multiple listing service (MLS) for the first half of 2015 shows that Prescott Valley's median house price is around $212,000. Prescott's MLS is around $305,000 and the median price for both areas sits at $222,000.

Prescott still has Watson Lake, the Dells, Whiskey Row and the Courthouse Plaza.

But Prescott Valley envisions a thriving downtown area that includes a university and has taken the first steps to making that a reality.

Part of encouraging families to live in Prescott Valley includes growing the downtown area that encompasses the Entertainment District and the area south of the Prescott Valley Event Center.

Town officials took the first steps last month toward allowing construction of a proposed multi-unit complex.

The town council approved an amendment to the General Plan allowing for the construction of 260 luxury apartments on 9.5 acres between Main Street and Lake Valley Road.

The Prescott Valley Signature Entertainment, LLC, applied for the amendment and a zoning variance in order to build the high-density, multifamily units in a gated community - a density of about 27.25 units per acre.

In August, the planning and zoning commission heard public comments, as well as staff presentations about the proposed development, before voting to recommend approval of the general plan amendment to change the zoning to allow for future construction.

Community Development Director Richard Parker said that in the future, "Adding to the velocity of change, is a major university to that area. The other is a stronger market for housing downtown."

Rounding out the residential influx would be a possible expansion of the Allied Health and Nursing programs situated near Yavapai Regional Medical Center East.

Parker added that developing the downtown would, in turn, help bring in the market needed to generate revenues.

During previous planning meetings, Parker has stated that the town has moved its focus toward attracting a university to its downtown along with the hospital and enhanced medical services.

At an AugustPrescott Valley Chamber of Commercebreakfast meeting, Ron Fain with Fain Signature Group, unveiled his family's plans for the downtown area that may include, "A mixture of residential and corporate center including a university."

Fain also said the downtown plans, "Are still preliminary at this point and subject to change, according to market changes and demands."

Fain said he wants to attract more people into the core of town and attract a job base into that area.

"We have to keep drawing these plans on paper and keep coming back."

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Stephanie Woods-Lembach Headshot
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Phone: 928-308-8565
Dated: October 13th 2015
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West USA Realty of Prescott
2485 N Great Western Dr, Ste B
Prescott Valley, AZ
928-756-8445
800-690-7886

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