Roberta's Las Vegas Real Estate Blog: Las Vegas Real Estate Investment - Park Heights Cornerstone Redevelopment in Henderson

Las Vegas Real Estate Investment - Park Heights Cornerstone Redevelopment in Henderson

With the national economy bouncing around like a ping-pong ball, some become cautious while others have a vision of opportunity. The latter applies to Las Vegas' GSG Development, that is proposing a 40 acre mixed use project on a section of the 313 acre Cornerstone Redevelopment Site in Henderson, NV. It's part of a former industrial site located north of the 215 Beltway and Wigwam Parkway at Stephanie St., south of the Arroyo Grande Sports Complex and west of the soon to be Cornerstone Lake Park.

The project is being called Park Heights, and it calls for 1700 residential units and 851,000 square feet of office, hotel, retail, and civic space. The nearly 15 acres of open area landscaping proposed would be double the current city requirements. The residential component proposed will be comprised of two 30 story 330' towers, and a 13 story Luxury Condominium Tower as well as a 13 story hotel located on opposing sides. Central to the development and near the park would be a 12 story office tower, with low rise office and retail throughout the remaining property. The adjoining 100 acre park and 20 acre lake has been approved by Henderson Parks and Recreation, and is already in the final planning stages.

Rendering of Park Heights - Cornerstone in Henderson, NV
Courtesy Rendering

This will be the third proposal for the Cornerstone site, and the largest of them all. Because of it's building height and potential for additional traffic, Henderson Planning Commission will hold off on any approvals until next month. A traffic study is underway, but city staff recommends approvals as there are measures in place for the developer to either accommodate additional road improvements or scale back the project if congestion becomes an issue. The planning commission is also requesting more detailed drawings of the high rises before granting a waiver to build above the city's current 60' limitation.

While redevelopment projects often have many hurdles to clear and often several suitors before they materialize, it's encouraging to see them being brought to the table, especially in today's difficult market conditions. There are also others that are currently looking to invest in the future redevelopment of Las Vegas, such as the Lady Luck and Union Park projects in downtown. Continued investments such as these are exactly what is needed for economic stabilization and recovery by creating more new jobs and opportunity, and in what better place than in the Las Vegas Valley where it's can-do attitude has a history of beating the odds.


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Comment balloon 4 commentsRoberta LaRocca • September 18 2008 06:28PM


Great reporting Roberta.  Do you think this project will suffer the same fate as Sullivan Square?  This land was up for sale at really really high prices, I hopeit is not the typical "pump and dump" ploy!

Posted by June Stark, Las Vegas Condos & Luxury Homes Expert (Elite Realty-Luxury Homes & Condos On & Off the Strip) almost 12 years ago

June:  Thanks! GSG has a few local developments in their portfolio. As I recall, somewhere around $800 million and climbing. The Park at Northpointe, The Park at Spanish Ridge and Spanish Ridge II, Patrick Professional Park, The Park at San Martin and The Park at Warm Springs. They aren't exactly a pump & dump outfit like so many that have come....and gone. Sullivan Square is in litigation, with GSG claiming that their 100% financing partner and majority owner, Harcourt Developments, stopped paying the bills to oust them from the project.  

I think the real issues with Park Heights will be the development agreement expenses and exactly what they'll get approved to build, and if that all pencils out well enough to attract the financing. A mixed use bordering on 100 acre city park and lake view, with beltway access, should draw some attention, especially if the numbers are right.


Posted by Roberta LaRocca, REALTOR®, Broker, Salesperson, NV. Lic BS.507 (Simply Vegas Real Estate) almost 12 years ago

There is already a giant PURPLE building for sale over there that was intended to be the first building in a sprawling metropolis of condos and Lake Las Vegas is in receivership.   The property tax revenue on the improvements to the land might be enticing, but if Henderson allows them to break ground on any of those giant towers that will block the miles of unblemished valley views that all of the houses along Arroyo Grande enjoy, then there should be Hell to pay, at least not until GSG comes through with 100% of its financing, 25% reservers and tens of thousands of pages documenting where in the Hell all the buyers and renters for those towers are going to come from.   I mean, have you been to McDonalds next to "Echelon" and looked up --it's a mess.  (Echelon construction was abandoned with many half-built ugly skyscraper frames just standing there in the wind.)  Right now, many buyers are moving from Riverside to Orange County because OC is becoming more affordable --exactly how many of them do you think are contemplating buying million dollar condos in City Center, little known Henderson?   Yeah, the new city park is going to be great and it's close to the airport and a great community to live in (except for the water quality and close proximity of the pipe that blows to the pipe that sucks in Lake Mead), so let them build, but nothing above the height of The Fiesta/Reserve casino until they can prove it is not going to wind up like Echelon --or worse, the giant PURPLE building for sale across the street.

Posted by Bruce over 11 years ago

Bruce: Interesting rant...but I'd like to respond with a couple of points.  

I mentioned this is the 3rd. developer making an attempt for this former industrial property, or this portion of it. It's not unusual for these redevelopments, or sometimes a building, to go through a variety before one has a plan that sticks. Union Park in downtown is a perfect example.

Lake Las Vegas isn't in receivership, it's in Chapter 11 reorganization. They are restructuring debt that allowed them to gain post bankruptcy court approval for additional loans of $127 million to maintain operations and maintenance. Many participating in this funding are creditors of the original loans. The default caused from builders not picking up their options on the improved parcels, due to the national housing crisis. New home builders across the country are facing challenges as there are an abundance of foreclosures on the market. The good news is pricing is much more affordable, speculators had been causing some unrealistic numbers.  

I think if you go back and look at my post, building height is what the Henderson planning commission is concerned about, and why they requested GSG to return with more details before any waivers are issued. I believe they have continued their first scheduled meeting, so there hasn't been any decision on it that I'm aware of. I think that in the current financial situation and what I'm assuming will be true for the near future... if this project does get the needed approvals, lending guidelines themselves will be fairly strict. I don't think they'll want any repeat performances of the current financing mess, so everything will have to pencil out.  

There haven't been any condo prices mentioned that I know of, but comparing City Center's estimated $11.2 bil project to this one estimated at $1 billion is like apples and oranges. I would have to assume at this point there would be somewhat of a price range difference between the two. There are a little over 1700 residential units proposed in the current design and only some in a smaller building to be considered 'luxury'. Even though valley in-migration is said to have dropped to 5,000 - 5,500 per month during this current slowdown, not exactly a difficult number to absorb if just that rate continues, sales depending more on that unknown price.  

It's my understanding that any water intake issues are from lowering lake levels. A third lower intake is under construction by the Southern NV Water Authority, so that if the drought were to continue and lake levels to fall further, there would be adequate supply from lower levels of cooler and even cleaner water. 96% of the water from Lake Mead is sent past the dam to supply in CA & AZ. Fortunately last year they signed an agreement that allowed those states to bank water in the lake instead of the forced releases. That had offset some of the low level estimates for this year. Interestingly enough, Forbes had placed Las Vegas valley water quality in the top 10 of US Best Cities for Clean Drinking Water, at #7.  

Echelon did fall victim to the financial crunch. It's partners Morgan Hotels and hadn't secured their financing and General Growth Properties unable to sign retail tenants because of it. Unfortunately there have been a number of similar construction halts across the country. Coyote Valley tribal casino in Mendocino, CA and Museum Plaza in Louisville, KY are just a couple off the top of my head that had similar bad timing. Boyd has said it hopes to resume construction next year if the financial markets return to something favorable, and Morgan has since signed an amended agreement to complete their joint venture that runs through December 2009. At this point delayed, not dead yet. I'd also add the Cosmopolitan was spared the same fate even though it's financing had fallen apart and defaulted on it's initial construction loans.  

So as I mention in my comment above, I think this development will depend on what they are permitted to build and if they can make those numbers work. This is in the preliminary stages and a few years out if it does take shape, but it doesn't appear at the moment there's much in speculative financing anytime soon. It is good to see those that believe in the future growth of the Las Vegas Valley, even in these difficult economic times.

Posted by Roberta LaRocca, REALTOR®, Broker, Salesperson, NV. Lic BS.507 (Simply Vegas Real Estate) over 11 years ago