Big retail, residential project set in Carlin
Alex Hose, president of Tico Construction of Reno and San Jose, is about to undertake the biggest project of a career that spans more than a quarter century.
Hose and his wife, Marion, who founded AMH Properties when they moved to Reno in 2005, purchased 322 acres of undeveloped land on the northeast corner of Interstate 80 and Highway 766 (Newmont Road) in Carlin for a master-planned development that would change the face of Carlin.
AMH Properties and Tico Construction are ironing out the intricacies of the ambitious Carlin Springs development, which includes a travel center, casino, hotel/motel and RV park, as well as retail shops, a fast food eatery and mini storage facility.
Most importantly, the development calls for up to 600 apartments and 600 single-family homes to address the long-standing need for new housing in Elko County.
Hose estimates the development could cost as much as $150 million to $175 million. AMH properties used its own funding to buy the land from the City of Carlin and several private landowners. The developers plan to finance the project with a mix of bank financing and private investment.
“We have got 10,000 miners a day driving on Highway 766,” Hose says. “The mines are trying to attract more young families and for them to have a nice, quality place, themystique of Carlin has not been as high-end as they would like, and we would like to change that.”
The proposed truck center would be roughly 20,000 square feet and would include eight to 12 retail pumps and 10 to 12 commercial islands for big rig and fleet vehicles. AMH Properties is working with a casino operator and lodging operator to manage and operate those facilities, Hose says.
Retail development could include small grocery and drug stores, a satellite bank branch and an urgent care facility.
Hose expects to begin mass grading at the site in April and May and hopes to have utilities run throughout the parcel by the end of June with construction of buildings to follow in July.
The travel center is the first phase of the 2.5-year development window and Tico Construction would serve as general contractor on the project.
Hose says controlling the entire parcel on the northeast corner of 80 and Newmont Road allows the development team to put all the pieces in place with fewer obstacles.
“We were able to purchase all of the property; which is really going to make it work together better to really master plan it,” he says. “Before it was fragmented and there was no captain of the ship.”
Another plus, he says, is that a full slate of utilities extends to the property’s edge. Many of the undeveloped parcels in Elko County that could be developed lack utilities, making them much more costly to build out.
Tico Construction is assembling a professional team to handle the details of the Carlin Springs development, Hose says. The pressing need for more housing in Elko County, as well as the lack of commercial development in Carlin makes the timing right for the project. Additionally, he says, the super-heated mining industry, high wages in the area and long-term planning by mining companies will help the region avoid the devastating boom-and-bust cycles that have historically plagued mining communities throughout the United States.
“Carlin has about 2,200 people and about 800 doors, and we are more than doubling the size of Carlin,” Hose says. “This has been overdue for the last four or five years. The mines have been putting out reports, and independent analysts say the mines are going to go for another 15 to 20 years for sure, and they really could go another 40 to 50 years. Barrick (Gold Corp.) and Newmont (Mining Corp.) have invested billions; they are not going to bug out.
“The town of Carlin is wanting this and is willing to help us get this done. This is an opportunity of a lifetime for AMH.”
Glenn Trust, Carlin city manager, says AMH Properties is the third development group to show interest in developing the parcel of land that today is home to nothing more than sagebrush and tumbleweeds.
“The thing that I like most about entrepreneurship is I can work toward something that I’m passionate about and be at the forefront of the change that I want to see happen,” said Priyanka Senthil, a senior at Davidson Academy in Reno and co-founder of startup company AUesome.