SAFFORD – The façade of the Mt. Graham Shopping Center is being renovated and should be finished just in time for Christmas.
The shopping center, located at the intersection of 20th Avenue and U.S. Highway 70, previously resurfaced half its parking lot in 2011. The southern half was put on hold to pour two restaurant pads, but that has yet to come to fruition.
Chain link fencing encircles the stores, but everything is still open during construction and there are walkways to the stores’ entrances.
RCD Demolition and Division II Construction Inc. out of Tucson are handling the tear down and renovation of the shopping center’s front façade. Division II has built numerous commercial entities throughout southern Arizona including multiple retail centers, schools, offices, churches, skyboxes at University of Arizona’s football stadium, medical facilities and also has done restoration of historic buildings.
Bob Reyna, the project superintendent for the renovation, said the façade will be updated to look like other local modern shopping centers with a stucco finish. The project will also add a new, taller parapet and should be completed about two weeks before Christmas.
“So far, it’s going fine,” Reyna said.
The one part of the center that won’t be updated is the old Jerry Lewis Theater at the center’s southern end. The building, which first brought movies to the shopping center in the 1970s, will be totally dismantled to make more parking areas.
“We’ll take out all the foundation and then backfill it and pave it,” Reyna said.
The demolition and construction teams are staying in the area during the work week, utilizing local businesses to meet their daily needs.
“We appreciate the work here in Safford,” Reyna said.