By Stephanie Guzman / Reporter Albuquerque Business First, Dec 15, 2015, 6:35am

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A retail project being developed by Allen Sigmon Real Estate Group on a seven-acre piece of vacant property in the Cottonwood area is progressing, with several retailers signed on and two phases planned.

The property, located at 9641 Eagle Ranch Rd. NW, was initially slated to be a large apartment complex. In the spring, the development team said they decided the project should be more mixed-use. Now, the developers are leaning towards an all-retail project.

“Our preference is to do all retail and office,” said Lance Sigmon, a principal at Allen Sigmon Real Estate Group. “If there’s room left for some residential, then that’s our last choice.

“Sigmon said the team looked at constructing residential units, but realized there’s a market for more retail space in the Cottonwood area. The property is in high demand since it is one of the last few large pieces of vacant property available in the area.

“We’ve seen a lot of multifamily pop up on the Westside and as we looked at the numbers, because this was one of the last remaining parcels in the Cottonwood area, we thought the highest and best use is for retail,” Sigmon said.

The developers are able to build 40,000 to 50,000-square-feet of retail space facing Eagle Ranch Road NW. Sigmon said several retailers and a gym have already signed letters of intent for the future commercial center.

Sigmon said once the first retail strip is built out, there may still be land available towards the back of the property. Whether it’s developed for an office user or more retail depends on the market and interest, Sigmon said.

The first phase of the retail project should break ground in 2016.

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