A new office tower is in the works at Hayden Ferry Lakeside in Tempe, Ariz. Phoenix-based Ryan Cos. US Inc. will develop and build the 10-story office tower located at Mill Avenue and Rio Salado Parkway.

Sunbelt Holdings, Scottsdale, Ariz., acquired the plot of land at Hayden Ferry Lakeside as part of a larger portfolio from original developer SunCor in 2010. The new tower will be the third office tower at the development along the shores of man-made Tempe Town Lake.

The 250,000-sq-ft office building is the first commercial high rise to be break ground in downtown Tempe since 2007. "Staying ahead of the upcoming demand, Ryan recognizes the need for additional Class ‘A’ office space in Tempe,” says John Strittmatter, Ryan Cos. southwest division president. Leasing has tightened considerably in Tempe in recent months, especially at the existing office buildings at Hayden Ferry Lakeside – currently 94% leased, compared to 51% last summer.

Recent tenant additions to Hayden Ferry Lakeside include Silicon Valley Bank, web development company Statera and digital media firm Xhibit, relocating to Tempe from Michigan.

Tempe’s main thoroughfare, Mill Avenue, has added 48 new retail businesses since 2009, and the vacancy rate has gone from 32.4% in April 2009 to 20.5% in February 2012, according to Kris Baxter-Ging, City of Tempe’s community development marketing specialist.

The new tower was originally designed in 2007 by architectural firm DAVIS, which is headquartered at Hayden Ferry Lakeside. The building design maintains the same boat-shaped, nautical theme as its predecessors, but several enhancements have been made to give the new tower a cleaner, more contemporary look, says Mike Davis, founder and director of design. The curtain wall system will incorporate cobalt blue glass, aluminum panels and horizontal mullions.

Hayden Ferry Lakeside was conceived in 1999 by SunCor Development as a mixed-use complex of three office towers and four residential properties along the shores of Tempe Town Lake. However, SunCor was only able to complete two office towers and two condominium structures prior to selling off the property last year.

No tenants have been announced for the new tower, but leasing efforts have commenced.