Miner Editorial | Seizing the opportunity was the right play

City Council gave unanimous approval for City Attorney Carl Cooper and Interim City Manager Jim Bacon to move toward finalizing a development agreement with Kingman Regional Medical Center regarding the construction of the Interstate 40 and Kingman Crossing Boulevard interchange.

The Daily Miner tips its hat and says well done to all parties involved getting to this point of the process.

A review of the bullet points presented by KRMC CEO Brian Turney at Tuesday’s Council meeting clearly leads to one conclusion: The hospital has a lot of confidence in itself and the project.

In short, KRMC and its development partner, Ault Companies, will be shouldering the risk. These two entities have agreed to pay the construction of the interchange with a completion date of Dec. 31, 2022. They will design and pay for connecting Santa Rosa Drive (where KRMC Hualapai Mountain Campus is located) to Prospector Street on the north side of I-40. The companies will also contribute two-thirds of the cost to connect Kingman Crossing Boulevard to Southern Avenue, up to $3 million.

In return, the City will share 50 percent of the sales taxes generated from the commercial areas created surrounding the project until the companies are completely reimbursed for their interchange costs or 20 years, whichever is sooner. The City agrees to “not put out to bid or contract with a developer to market its land until at least Jan. 1, 2024,” according to Turney’s letter to Council.

This is a remarkable deal for Kingman.

At worst, if this project completely bombs, there will be an opening to move from Southeast Kingman to Northeast Kingman. In the name of public safety, this is vital.

The northeast section of Kingman, which includes two schools on Prospector Street, does not have emergency response teams in its sector. There is a growing population there with homes being built, and they need prompt responses to emergency situations. Paramedics from the Kingman Fire Department Station No. 4 at the corner of Karen Avenue and Eastern Street should have quicker access to the area by traveling to Southern Avenue, east to Kingman Crossing Boulevard and north to the northeast sector. As of now, they have to travel north on Eastern Street to Kenwood Avenue to Yavapai Street to Airway Avenue at about 20 mph once they get to Kenwood.

There is a lot to negotiate before the development agreement is finalized, but all parties involved appear to be in agreement on how to get to the finish line.

What is most impressive about KRMC’s offer and Council’s agreement, is they got here. Interchanges have been a contentious issue around town for some time now, bringing with it feelings of hope, disappointment and dismay.

Kingman’s leaders have proven this week they can get through difficult issues by compromising so that all of Kingman wins. With this deal, KRMC, Ault Companies, and the citizens of Kingman have set themselves up for prosperity.

Well done, leaders.