Karen Todd, Sparks customer service coordinator, said the project that began last year on the 164,000-square-foot plaza is “huge in our redevelopment area.” She also said it is also the largest renovation work to be done on the center since 1973. Paradise Plaza was originally built in 1968.
The existing shopping center, located at Oddie Boulevard, El Rancho Drive and Sullivan Lane, was acquired by Primestor, based in Beverly Hills, in 2005. They began with a remediation process at an old gas station on the southeast corner of Oddie and El Rancho. Construction on a Walgreens has begun at that site.
Various elements of the redevelopment have been approved or issued, including the site improvement plan, a façade renovation permit, a Starbucks renovation permit for the interior of the store, building permits for the Walgreens and two outlying paths.
As part of the façade renovation, buildings will incorporate the earth tone colors of existing businesses with deep greens and yellows and new signage will be added.
Todd said an advantage of the project to the City of Sparks is that Primestor is not seeking redevelopment funding; the company is providing the funding itself.
“There’s not much over there,” Todd said. “To have a Kmart is big for the people who live there. My guess is it’s more of a neighborhood commercial area as opposed to a regional center, but it’s certainly an important piece of property, and it’s an important center for Sparks and one we want to see grow and flourish.”
In addition to the Walgreens drug store, two building pads and a drive-through ATM adjacent to the existing Wells Fargo are part of the plans.
New buildings included in the expansion will connect to the present shopping center and parking areas will be accessible through pedestrian walkways.
Paradise Plaza is 15 1/2 acres and includes the Paradise Plaza Center, the anchor store Kmart, Wells Fargo Bank, Jack in the Box, H&R Block, Payless ShoeSource and Dollar Tree.
Primestor Development specializes in building neighborhood and community centers in under-retailed communities, including Los Angeles and Chicago.
“Since we acquired Paradise Plaza, we have been working diligently with the City of Sparks to create a development that would serve ... and as a gathering place for the community,” said Arturo Sneider, a partner at Primestor. “The end result will be a center that will become the heart of Sparks.”