Clark County Redevelopment

Commercial Center has a long history with Redevelopment. From 2005-2009 it was a long bumpy road, as the plan was to level everything from Joe Brown to Maryland Pkwy and Start Fresh. It only allowed 85% relocation costs to business. Mostly would be consisting of new residential high rise and mixed use, and the Redevelopment agency would have to approve all businesses coming back to the area, but who would come back after relocating. There was worry over eminent domain. Luckily with advocacy and informing the public then the great recession Commerical Center was spared the wrecking ball and lived another day.

At this time there were many challenges facing the area. But due to the efforts of the massive neighborhood cleanup and rebranding and to focus on the historic qualities, there was an emerging sentiment in Las Vegas to save and preserve our historic neighborhoods, as neighborhoods as Commercial Center were hitting that mark of being historic. Usually at about 50 years old is considered Historic. Not only due to age but for the to the significant contribution to the history of Vegas as the first outdoor shopping mall, and Rock Concert history, and an important social place of the 60’s to 2023. Commercial Center is the Center of Modernization of Las Vegas’s History and Heritage. There is no other place like it.

Being home to hundreds of Local Businesses over the decades we are intricately tied to the founding Las Vegas Families and to the New Nevadans that are making Las Vegas their home, and Commercial Center their home for business..

We look forward to the renewed vision of Commercial Center for the benefit of years to come. To Celebrate our Heritage and diversity as a incubator for entrepreneurship, creativity, the arts, music and cultural diversity. To keep Commercial Center “Small Business” with Big impact! The Real “Mom & Pops” of Las Vegas Always.

We must be careful of corporate takeover and influence, and gentrification. We do not need Gentrification, but rather a Holistic Approach. The needs of the Community are being met already in many ways as can be seen by the thriving business community. The surrounding areas have experienced Significant growth in real estate values, in line with the growth of Las Vegas in general. The biggest challenge was nearby apartments on Karen Ave now Liberace Ave, which was purposeful neglect by the previous Owner FECR Florida East Coast Realty TIbor Hollow, whose only desire was to gentrify the area and build four high rise towers. There was no plan to upgrade the current properties hundreds of Historic Units. Over the years the blocks from Joe Brown to State Street were left not upkept, and due to poor management created many of the problems of the area.

This highly valuable property, in close proximity to the strip and a wonderful place for locals to live who want to be near the strip. The new Owners capex plan unrolling with refurbished units in line with current market rental values. This plan supports business and commerce in the area and strengthens business as Commercial Center.

The Area is experiencing a renaissance and resurgence of care. Everything stems from the Vision of the property owners. The Community was well planned in the Late 50’s and 60’s for the long-term success and growth. Commercial Center as part of that plan has been a center of life and commerce since that time. Still after 60 years continues to be a vital gathering and social place for the area. Although the businesses have changed over the years, they now reflect the current needs of the community.

The Vision of the Commercial Center Business Association has helped the area to come back to life, honoring the legacy of the past, while envisioning a common sense approach to the future, working to those ends “One Day at Time”, One customer at time, one business at a time. Holding the space, the vision and the mission. Claiming its rightful place in Las Vegas Iconography.

Everyone has a seat at the table, and in this vision the focus is on meeting the needs of the moment. The evolution is quite astounding, there has been a wholesale miracle of staying power against all odds. Even Billionaire Developers who were not in alignment with our community traditions and values, could not come against the strength of the spirit of the Community. Together we are strong.

We take a note from our Founders and envision as they did in 1963. We know we are valuable; we are important, we helped to build and shape the community around us in the most positive ways. We are here to stay. Commercial Center is our home.

We hope you join us on the journey of Redevelopment-which really is the continued evolution of our area, with eyes and ears wide open, and letting our government know that Commercial Center is a Valuable Historic Landmark. That we all want to be included in the plans moving forward and collaborate with the government for our mutual success.

Previous Plans 2008

History of Sahara Ave

Sahara Avenue is a major east-west roadway in the Las Vegas Valley. The former State Route 589 (SR 589) comprised a large portion of the street. The roadway is named after the Sahara Hotel and Casino, which itself is named after the Sahara desert. The casino is located on Las Vegas Boulevard where the boulevard intersects with Sahara Avenue.

The road was originally called San Francisco Avenue and served as the southern city limit for Las Vegas.

In the 1960s, city planners envisioned construction of an expressway along Sahara to Rainbow Boulevard.

The Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) removed SR 589 from its maintenance logs by the beginning of 2019,[2] and has begun the process of turning ownership of the roadway over to the City of Las Vegas and Clark County.[3]

Current Sosa News

May 18th Block Party

The event represents a collaboration among Clark County, art consultancy and event curator Fired Up Management, electronic music event promoter and distributor Insomniac, the UNLV College of Fine Arts and the Historic Commercial Center Association and its merchants. In addition to Fired Up Management’s Levine, the Historic Commercial Center redevelopment project is also helmed by Architect Robert Gurdison as well as Tom Michel, former owner of the Vegas and Nevada Rooms at Commercial Center. Historic Commercial Center is located at 953 E. Sahara Avenue, east of the Las Vegas Strip and west of Maryland Parkway. The Block Party coincides with the renaming of Karen Avenue, which runs on the south side of Historic Commercial Center, to Liberace Avenue.

The South of Sahara Avenue District (SOSA) covers a massive 120 acres and is ripe for redevelopment. Historic Commercial Center is at the center of it all and can be an incubator for the arts and eventually a home to arts centers and museums. Its history as a community hub and entertainment center is storied. The Doors, The Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin and the Beach Boys have performed there. Elvis Presley bought Priscilla’s engagement ring at a jewelry store at the center and Liberace had his furs dry-cleaned at the site. And, members of the Rat Pack ate regularly at its deli.

What’s Next for Commercial Center and SOSA? 2023 & Beyond!

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