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9:54 AM Tue, Sept. 25th

LLC with Prescott ties buys 15,000 acres through bankruptcy

A limited liability company with Prescott ties bought about 15,000 acres of grazing land off Highway 89A near the Prescott and Prescott Valley boundaries for $31.3 million through bankruptcy court.

Arizona Eco Development LLC recently announced it bought the land through a bankruptcy court order from Granite Dells Ranch Holdings, an entity Scottsdale-based David Cavan and his associates managed. The LLC is based in Paradise Valley, but lists as its chief executive officer Jason Gisi of Prescott and Rick Chepeus of Phoenix as its chief financial officer.

Gisi and Chepeus said the LLC bought the land for its development potential while stating they have no immediate plans to develop the land.

"It is all pretty new right now," Gisi said. "We are trying to understand what we have and how we move forward."

They stated in a news re-lease that they plan to collaborate "immediately" with Prescott and Prescott Valley officials to plan development "in a manner that is sensitive to the land and its beautiful natural surroundings."

The land is currently zoned for commercial and industrial, and could have homes, according to Gisi.

The land already has access to infrastructure, Gisi said, adding the LLC seeks to annex land to Prescott and Prescott Valley to hook up to water and sewer service. He said approximately 900 acres along the west side south of Highway 89A falls within Prescott's growth path, while about 1,280 acres to the east and on the south side of the highway lie within Prescott Valley's growth path.

Prescott Community Development Director Tom Guice referred calls about the land to Gisi.

However, Guice's counterpart in Prescott Valley, Richard Parker, said, "We looked at some very preliminary planned drawings a couple of years ago in anticipation of annexation. I did talk with Jason a couple of months ago."

Gisi said he previously worked for developer Mike Fann by arranging for annexing and rezoning 1,142 acres of Granite Dells Estates near the LLC's new holdings.

Cavan Real Estate Investments succeeded in annexing 500 of the 15,000 acres into Prescott in July 2009. In September 2010, Cavan announced it had named a 500-acre commercial complex surrounding the recent completion of the Highway 89A/Granite Dells Parkway interchange.

Cavan also opened land sales for the project.

However, Cavan's Granite Dells Ranch Holdings later filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, listing both assets and liabilities in the range of $100 million to $500 million, the Phoenix Business Journal reported.