Glendale, AZ - Economic Development
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September 2017– Issue 17
Glendale Office of Economic Development


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Now that we have your attention…
Glendale is booming and perceptions are changing. The open market has discovered the value of the Glendale brand and strategic location offered in what is more and more becoming the geographical center of the valley of the sun.

Glendale is amassing a unique lineup of signature businesses and companies that will draw millions of additional visits to this dynamic area of the state, adding to the over ten million trips to this area. This is fueling more interest by a large assortment of industries across the spectrum.

What does it mean for the west valley to be coming of age? That story is unfolding now and is turning heads; we plan on making the best of every opportunity to continue to improve on the paradigm and advance the fact the west valley is a huge source of the most important resource, which is our workforce. By attracting these new opportunities, we are keeping our workforce off the freeway and right here at home in the west valley to live, work, and play!



IKEA Selects Glendale for New Location

In September, IKEA announced that it had selected Glendale as the location of its second Arizona store, on the southeast corner of Bethany Home Rd and Loop 101. Construction is planned for Fall 2018, with the store set to open in Spring 2020. The store will total 348,000 square feet and create 300 jobs, in addition to 500 construction jobs. An additional 30 acres immediately adjacent to IKEA will attract further development from businesses looking to locate near this dynamic retailer.



Glendale Welcomes Top Golf

Topgolf is building its newest facility in Glendale at the northeast corner of 99th Ave and Bethany Home Rd. The 65,000-square foot venue will include 102 hitting bays and 3,000 square feet of private event space. The project will create 500 new jobs and is expected to attract 450,000 visitors. This will be Topgolf’s third location in Greater Phoenix and first in the West Valley. Construction will begin later this year with the facility expected to open in 2018.



Aloft Hotel is coming to Westgate

Aloft is constructing a new 100 room hotel at Westgate. The four-story building located at the corner of 93rd Ave and Glendale Ave will feature an upgraded version of the hotel with wood flooring and a redone lobby. With the additional of Aloft, the Glendale Sports and Entertainment District will have over 1,000 hotel rooms. The new Aloft is expected to open Fall 2018.



Fairchild Freight locates to Glendale

Fairchild Freight, a North American transportation and logistics company, has selected Glendale as its new corporate headquarters. The company specializes in consumer food commodities with a focus on fruits, vegetables, meat and with a specialty in shipping seafood from Alaska throughout their network. Fairchild has chosen to locate in the Glendale Corporate Center, next to Bechtel’s Glendale operation, bringing 50 new jobs and absorbing 16,000 square feet of class A office space. We are excited to welcome another corporate headquarters to the city.



New Tenants at Westgate

Stir Crazy Comedy Club has opened in Westgate. Located directly above Whiskey Rose, the 120-seat venue features comedic acts as well as improv and stand-up comedy classes.

Popbar, an New York based dessert retailer, has opened its first Arizona location in Glendale in the Westgate Entertainment District. The store serves customized gelato, sorbet, and yogurt popsicles in more than 40 rotating flavors with a variety of toppings.

The two new venues are great additions that complements the many dynamic restaurant and entertainment options in the area.



Career Connectors

Career Connectors is opening a new location in Glendale, located inside Calvary Community Church at 6060 W Bell Rd. They are a non-profit career services organization that connects professionals in career transition to hiring companies and resources including workshops, networking and job leads. The organization currently has locations in Gilbert, north Scottsdale, and central Phoenix; the Glendale location will allow them to more easily connect to west valley employers and their workforce. The group will hold a networking event on the third Thursday of every month from 9am-12 noon.



Conair ribbon cutting held

Conair ribbon cutting

In August, Conair hosted a ribbon cutting at its site, officially opening its newest building. The new project created a substantial impact on the West Valley with the completion of a $40 million facility in the Glendale Airpark. At approximately one million square feet, the building is the length of five football fields. The project will create 300 new jobs, adding to the 450 already located in Glendale. With the opening of this facility, Conair now has the second largest corporate campus in metro Phoenix.



Downtown Glendale featured on CBS 5

In August, CBS 5’s morning show debuted a series titled “20 cities in 20 days” covering cities all throughout Arizona. The series kicked off in Glendale, highlighting downtown Glendale and its local businesses. Cuff, Brelby Theatre, and Desert Rose Steakhouse were all featured, along with an interview by Glendale Chamber of Commerce President Robert Heidt. View all of the clips here.



Healthcare amenities in the city

Glendale’s rapidly growing continuing care industry was recently featured in the Glendale Star. Over the last few years the number of assisted living facilities under construction has significantly increased to meet increasing demand for these types of properties. The story highlighted the drivers behind this phenomenon and featured Glencroft Senior Living, one of Glendale’s major employers.
Read the full story here.



West-MEC partners with Delta Airlines

Delta Airlines has formed a partnership with 38 Aircraft Maintenance Technology (AMT) schools across the country, including West-MEC. West-MEC offers the AMT program at their Central campus, located adjacent to the Glendale Airport. Students who complete the program are then able to test for their FAA certification. The partnership with Delta will ensure students are continuing to learn curriculum that exceeds industry standards.



MPEXA Export Challenge Pitch Competition

Metro Phoenix Export Challenge logo

The Metro Phoenix Export Alliance is accepting applications from small and medium sized Greater Phoenix companies that are new to exporting or new to market and are looking to grow their export potential. The top ten companies will be invited to pitch their export plans at the Export Challenge Pitch Competition on December 5th from 5-7:30 pm. The top prize is valued at $25,000, second place is $15,000 and third receives $10,000. Each award is for use on future export expenses.

The application can be found here; for more information contact Ruth Soberanes at Submit completed applications to by November 8th at 5 pm.



Glendale Businesses are Getting Noticed

The 2017 edition of Best of the Valley recognized some great Glendale businesses.

  • Cuff was named best cocktail bar in the West Valley in the 2017 Best of the Valley ranking by Phoenix Magazine. The restaurant’s deviled eggs also received mention as one of the best lunch options.
  • Dazzo’s Dog House received recognition for best Italian beef sandwich.
  • Thee Pits Again was named as the best barbeque in the west valley.
  • Box Lunch Gifts was recognized for their pop culture gift options.
  • Drawn to Comics was ranked as the 5th best comic book store in the United States and #1 in Arizona by Travel and Leisure magazine.


Getting the Word out about Glendale

Part of our role in Economic Development is to ensure that our audience of citizens, brokers, site selectors, and partners are informed of the community assets and development activity in Glendale.
Economic Development was featured on a recent edition of Glendale’s Best. Hosted by the Mayor, economic development staff joined the Glendale Chamber of Commerce and local businesses to discuss recent economic development efforts and successes. Watch the entire show here.

The Office of Economic Development partnered with the Glendale Public Library to participate in the annual Biz 2 Biz Expo on August 24th, promoting the Glendale IDEA Center, entrepreneurship and economic development to the local business community. The Biz 2 Biz Expo is coordinated by the Glendale Chamber of Commerce along with other regional partners as part of the West Valley Chamber Alliance.

Biz 2 Biz expoThe Arizona Chamber Executives annual conference included a panel on Economic Development; Glendale was represented on the panel along with the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce and Arizona Commerce Authority.

Staff participated as an exhibitor at the 15th annual WeMAR Expo on September 28th. The event is designed to give Realtors a chance to network and build relationships. The Glendale team had the opportunity share all of the exciting activity happening in the city.

Glendale staff participated in the Arizona Communities booth #2641 at the ICSC Western Conference on October 2nd-4th. The team was there to spread the word about retail opportunities in Glendale.



IDEA Center Office Hours

The Glendale Economic Development team will be holding office hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Glendale IDEA Center, located in the main branch of the library at 5959 W Brown St. Entrepreneurs and business owners can stop by to receive assistance in planning, launching or growing your business venture. Office hours will be 3pm-5pm on Tuesdays and 10am-12pm on Thursdays. Appointments are encouraged; sign up by calling 623-930-2983, email, or in person at the library reference desk.

In addition, the Office of Economic Development, in partnership with the Glendale Public Library and ASU’s Entrepreneurship Outreach Network, offers free ASU Start Up School classes at the Glendale Main Public Library. ASU Startup School is a 6-part series designed to help entrepreneurs and small business owners learn the fundamentals of entrepreneurship. Four classes are still available this fall; a new cycle of classes will begin in the Spring. All classes are held from 6:00PM-7:30PM at the Glendale Main Library, 5959 W Brown St.

To RSVP for courses, visit and go to Calendar of Events.

Remaining Fall 2017 ASU Start Up School Schedule

Startup School Stage 3 (Find Your Customer) - Tuesday, October 3, 2017
Session 3 covers an overview of the customer and students learn the customer discovery process.

Startup School Stage 4 (Build Your Product) - Tuesday, October 17, 2017
Session 4 covers an overview of the product and students develop a minimum viable product.

Startup School Stage 5 (Build a Profitable Company) - Tuesday, November 7, 2017
Session 5 covers the key components of profitable companies and helps students take the business model canvas into a business plan.

Startup School Stage 6 (Grow Your Company) - Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Session 6 covers growth and how to get, keep and grow customers.



What’s Happening in Downtown Glendale?

The Glendale Farmers Market is gearing up for the new season offering local produce, artisanal foods, and handcrafts. The Market is located on the northeast corner of 59th Ave and Myrtle Ave, with the event held from 9am-1pm. Dates for the 2017-2018 season include October 14th and 28th; November 11th; December 2nd, 16th, and 30th; January 13th and 27th; February 10th and 24th; March 10th and 24th; April 14th and 28th; and May 12th and 26th.



Glendale 2nd Quarter Building Occupancy

Glendale Growth

Office vacancy rates in Glendale are at 20.6% as of 2nd quarter 2017. However, when factoring out buildings that are vacant but unavailable the rate drops to 15.8% putting it in line with the Greater Phoenix average. The vacancy rate is expected to drop significantly as these projects come off the market and additional space is absorbed. Glendale also has the opportunity for new space along the Loop 101, with large land parcels available for build to suit and speculative office.

Industrial vacancy rates continue to sit near historic lows, coming in at 3.4% in 2nd quarter 2017. Most of the existing space available is in smaller spaces of 40,000 or less but a few large opportunities remain. Glendale also has numerous build to suit opportunities in the Glendale Airpark, Grand Avenue Industrial Park and the Loop 303 area.

Retail vacancy in Glendale continues to sit below the metro Phoenix average, at 6.4% in Glendale compared to 8.8% in metro Phoenix. New spaces continue to be added in the city, in addition to the current spaces being filled. This demonstrates the attractiveness of the Glendale market to retailers.






Square feet Vacant




Square feet Occupied




Percent Vacant





Market Comparisons:



Metro  Phoenix:     


Retail Vacancy:    




Industrial Vacancy:  




Office Vacancy:    




Source: Costar, 2nd Quarter 2017



Spotlight on – Signature Retail and Entertainment

Signature retail is one of Glendale’s targeted industries and right now the sector is booming. One of the major benefits Glendale offers is the diverse retail options throughout the city. The Sports and Entertainment District, off of Loop 101 and Glendale Avenue, is the location of the Westgate Entertainment District, a vibrant shopping, dining and entertainment experience. In just the past year Tavern+Bowl, Stir Crazy Comedy Club, Popbar, Olive Garden, Twin Peaks, Aloft Hotels and Dutch Bros have all chosen to locate here. Located adjacent to the Westgate Entertainment District is Tanger Outlets at Westgate, home to many top-name brands. The Sports and Entertainment District is home to Cabela’s, a quality outdoor merchandise retailer, and American Furniture Warehouse, a 600,000 square foot home furniture retailer. With the additions of the recently announced IKEA and Top Golf this area is a retail and entertainment hotspot.

Historic Downtown Glendale spans 10 blocks, with many specialty shops located throughout the area. Signature festivals like Glendale Glitters and the Glendale Chocolate Affaire bring many visitors to the area. Unique and award winning restaurants like Cuff, La Piazza al Forno, Desert Rose Steakhouse, Haus Murphy, and JJs Louisiana BBQ have all chosen downtown Glendale to reach their customers.

North Glendale is a very attractive location for retailers. BMW recently selected the area for its newest dealership, located along Loop 101, north of Union Hills Dr. Arrowhead Towne Center located in the area, near 75th Ave and Bell Road, has over 1.2 million square feet of retail shopping and eateries. Major anchors include Dillard’s, Macy’s, Sears, JC Penny, H&M and Dick’s Sporting Goods. Retailers are continually investing in the mall, with Lush, Chompie’s and an expanded Apple store all locating in the past few years.



Meet the Glendale Office of Economic Development:

  • Brian Friedman, Director
  • Carol Hu, Specialist
  • Randy Huggins, Program Manager
  • Jessi Pederson, Officer
  • Suzie Ricard, Management Assistant
  • Kristen Stephenson, Officer
  • Visit us online now! Click here.