Updated November 2, 2022 - 7:49 pm
One of the nation’s biggest homebuilders is pushing ahead with a project on Water Street, the latest new venture in Henderson’s once-sleepy downtown corridor.
Lennar Corp. recently held a ceremonial groundbreaking for a 25-unit townhouse complex along Water Street between Basic Road and Ocean Avenue. The project, Aqua, is slated to open in fall 2023, according to a news release last week.
Construction activity will start in the next few months, and the two-story homes will range from 1,800 to 1,900 square feet, said Joy Broddle, Lennar’s Las Vegas division president. Home prices haven’t been set yet.
Lennar purchased the 1.6-acre site from the city of Henderson’s Redevelopment Agency this year for $770,000, the vacant plot’s appraised value, records show.
Water Street, the home of Henderson city government, used to be a quiet place with limited foot traffic. Broddle, who has been working in Southern Nevada for Lennar for 17 years, said that when she moved to the region, Water Street had vintage shops and was “a little bit forgotten.”
But more food-and-beverage outlets have opened on Water Street lately and a big mixed-use project has taken shape across from a new ice rink. Overall, more people have been heading to the corridor city officials long sought to revitalize.
The new townhouse project is much smaller than the housing tracts that Miami-based Lennar and other builders routinely develop in Southern Nevada. Still, Broddle said the company is excited to be the first national homebuilder with a presence in downtown Henderson, adding the city has attracted restaurants, entertainment and other ventures to the area.
“The activity and energy level on Water Street is just changing every single day,” she said.
Henderson Redevelopment Manager Anthony Molloy said the city owned the project site for more than a decade and has sought to increase the number of residential units downtown and diversify the mix of housing types.
“This really hit on all of those targets,” he said of Lennar’s project.
Molloy said several developers expressed interest in the property, but Lennar was the only national homebuilder the city spoke with about the site.
According to Builder magazine, Lennar is the second-biggest homebuilder in the U.S., with more than 59,800 closed sales last year.
Water Street is lined with restaurants, breweries and other businesses, and some big real estate projects have taken shape as well. The most prominent is Lifeguard Arena, which opened in fall 2020 and is the practice rink for the Silver Knights minor-league hockey team.
The Watermark, a seven-story mixed-use project across from the rink, broke ground last year. It is expected to feature around 150 apartments and two levels of commercial space.
Its developer, Strada Development Group, hopes to finish the project at the end of January, co-founder Tom Wucherer said Tuesday.
Strada also filed plans for a 22-story project at the corner of Water Street and Lake Mead Parkway that calls for 110 hotel rooms and 225 apartments. The high-rise would include meeting rooms, office space, and a restaurant and sky lounge on the top floors.
Developer Joe DeSimone has also filed plans to build a hotel in the parking lot of his downtown Henderson casino, The Pass.