Herb Jaffe: Reverence the newest sign of Summerlin’s big rebound

Updated May 16, 2017 - 12:38 pm

You stand atop a hill high above Route 215 and the westerly end of Summerlin Parkway, both of which are about half a mile away, and you gaze in every direction at the breathtaking, almost intoxicating view.

Moments later you watch as dignitaries on that very site pose for photos at the groundbreaking of a 13,000-square-foot recreation center that will become the focal point of Pulte Homes’ 300-acre Reverence Village.

Among the dignitaries who helped put the gold-plated shovels into the ground were Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman and Ward 4 Councilman Stavros Anthony. Both spoke with glowing anticipation of the more than 900 new families and the economic impact they will bring to Summerlin’s newest development.

Another of the dignitaries was Ryan Breen, division president of Pulte Las Vegas and the single developer of Reverence. Breen waited 10 years for the occasion, sweating out thick and thin through the most costly recession ever to hit Las Vegas. Reverence had been on Pulte’s drawing board for that long. Breen said it was worth the wait, calling Summerlin “one of the country’s premier communities.”

None of the hundred or so guests at the ceremony would disagree, nor would they question the splendor of Summerlin.

Just two months earlier Anthony, one of the most vocal supporters of Summerlin, sat with me and Jason Demuth, Pulte’s director of marketing, in a coffee shop in nearby Sun City. “This is a big deal — in fact, a very big deal,” the ebullient councilman, in whose ward Reverence is being built, said about the groundbreaking.

“We’re going to have a big-time ceremony, a big splash. … The mayor, lots of dignitaries, the whole works,” Anthony went on. Indeed, the councilman spoke like a prophet.

But you need not be very prophetic these days when you talk about the virtues of Summerlin. What is now one of the most attractive and sought-after master-planned communities in the U.S. was once nothing more than a wasteland of some 25,000 acres that Howard Hughes, the wealthy eccentric of yesteryear, purchased from the federal government for less than $3 an acre in the mid-1950s.

An Excellent biography of Hughes — “Power, Paranoia & Palace Intrigue” — was written by Geoff Schumacher, a former assistant editor at the Las Vegas Review-Journal and now a director at the Mob Museum in downtown Las Vegas. Schumacher said in his book, published in 2008:

“If I had to vote on the single most significant legacy of Hughes’ involvement with Las Vegas, I would choose Summerlin. It was and remains the most vibrant and attractive address in the Las Vegas Valley.”

So Reverence will soon rise in the northwest mountainous sector, high above most of Summerlin, as part of “a master plan that sets the standard for quality of life,” Goodman said.

Anthony expressed excitement over “the hundreds of construction jobs” and “just how big it will be for our economy.”

Irrespective of his adventurous and sometimes misguided life, Hughes never got to see the emergence of Summerlin as the idyllic model for community life. He might have been in awe had he witnessed the development of village-type residential complexes accompanied by amenities that have become so attractive to newcomers.

Downtown Summerlin, also a victim of the recession and delayed for years, has far exceeded the definition of success envisioned by its planners. Those who flock to its retailers and restaurants, to Red Rock Resorts and to the Costco shopping district continue to grow in number.

Then there’s the ice hockey facility being built for the Las Vegas Golden Knights, just opposite Downtown Summerlin. And buzz has it that a baseball stadium for the Las Vegas 51s, next door, is coming soon.

Herb Jaffe was an op-ed columnist and investigative reporter for most of his 39 years at the Star-Ledger of Newark, New Jersey. His most recent novel, “Double Play,” is available. Contact him at hjaffe@cox.net.

ad-high_impact_4
Local
Mount Charleston Gets Heavy Snow, Fog
Mount Charleston saw heavy snow today, and fog in lower elevations as a cold front swept across the Las Vegas Valley. (Benjamin Hager/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Tourists enjoy rain in downtown Las Vegas
Tourists break out the umbrellas. But Brian Herting of Lincoln, Nebraska, dons shorts and a T-shirt, as he makes his way through downtown Las Vegas. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Thick fog blanketed Las Vegas Valley on Tuesday
Thick fog blanketed Las Vegas Valley on Tuesday. The National Weather Service.forecast called for a 50 percent chance of rain. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Time lapse video of fog covering the Strip
The Las Vegas Strip is shrouded in fog Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Tony Spilotro's Las Vegas home for sale — VIDEO
The former Las Vegas home of Chicago mob enforcer, Tony Spilotro, is now for sale. Spilotro, who was portrayed by Joe Pesci in the film Casino, is the original owner of the home at 4675 Balfour Drive, built in 1974. (Samia DeCubas/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Buffalo Drive And Mountains Edge Parkway Fatal
Las Vegas police and the Nevada Highway Patrol are investigating a fatal crash in the southwest valley on Saturday afternoon. (Richard Brian/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
UNLV's Joel Ntambwe on his play
UNLV forward Joel Ntambwe talks about his play at this point in the season. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Sam Schmidt chats about hectic off-season
IndyCar team owner Sam Schmidt and lead driver James Hinchcliffe chat about the hectic off-season at the SpeedVegas high-performance driving facility outside of Las Vegas, Nevada, on January 10, 2018. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
R-J's Mark Anderson on UNLV's victory
Review-Journal sports reporter Mark Anderson recaps UNLV's victory at New Mexico. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
UNLV's Noah Robotham on the win at New Mexico
UNLV guard Noah Robotham talks about winning at New Mexico on Jan. 8, 2019. (Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
UNLV's Kris Clyburn on big 3 vs. New Mexico
UNLV guard Kris Clyburn talks about his key 3-pointer against New Mexico. (Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Marvin Menzies on beating New Mexico
UNLV basketball coach Marvin Menzies talks about UNLV's win at New Mexico on January 8, 2019. (Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
New HOV Ramp Scheduled to Open in March
New HOV ramp scheduled to open in March of 2019.
American Preparatory Academy part of charter school growth in Las Vegas
American Preparatory Academy in Las Vegas has a waiting list of students who want to attend. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Wheelchair tournament at UNLV
Cesar Robledo talks about wheelchair basketball and what it means for players to compete during the Wheelchair Basketball Division I-II Tournament at UNLV in Las Vegas, Sunday, Jan. 6, 2019.
Snow in Henderson on New Year's Eve morning
Light snow flurries in Anthem Highlands in Henderson on Monday morning, the last day of 2018.
Marvin Menzies on UNLV's trip to Hawaii
UNLV basketball coach Marvin Menzies talks about the upcoming trip to Hawaii. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Raiders Stadium Timelapse
Construction on the new Raiders stadium continues in Las Vegas.
Pinecrest Academy Horizon principal wins Milken Educator Award
Tony Sanchez on UNLV's recruiting class
UNLV football coach Tony Sanchez talks about his early signing class. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
The Magical Forest at Opportunity Village
Opportunity Village's Magical Forest added 1 million lights and a synchronized music show visible from all over the forest this year. The holiday attraction, which began in 1991, has a train, rides, food and entertainment along with the light displays. (Heidi Knapp Rinella/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Siegel Cares delivers bagels to families in need
Since Thanksgiving, Mark Lenoir of Siegel Cares, has been delivering leftover Bagelmania bagels to families staying at the Siegel Suites.
Dan Barnson steps down
Arbor View football coach Dan Barnson stepped down Friday after 12 seasons at the helm. Under Barnson, the Aggies won 104 games and became one of the top programs in Las Vegas. The Aggies went 12-2 in 2018 and won a region championship for the first time in program history. Barnson loves Friday nights, but said the 12-month commitment was getting exhausting.
NFR 2018 Highlights
NFR 2018 highlights from every round of this years rodeo.
NFR 2018 Round 10 Highlights
NFR 2018 Round 10 Highlights of the 2018 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo from the Thomas & Mack in Las Vegas, Nevada. (CBS Sports Network/PRCA)
NFR- Joe Frost
NFR Bull Rider Joe Frost talks about the difference in bulls and his family legacy with Cassie Soto before the last round of the National Finals Rodeo.
Herm Edwards on LV Bowl loss
Arizona State coach Herm Edwards talks about the loss in the Las Vegas Bowl. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Fresno State linebacker George Helmuth after LV Bowl
Linebacker George Helmuth talks about Fresno State's turnaround. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Youth cancer survivor receives gift bat at Winter Meetings
Cancer survivor Steven Mondragon, baseball player at Los Altos High in Hacienda Heights, California, received a complimentary bamboo bat during the Baseball Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Dec. 12, 2018. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
NFR Day 9 Highlights
Highlights from round 9 of the 2018 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo from the Thomas & Mack in Las Vegas, Nevada. (CBS Sports Network/PRCA)
Tony Sanchez wraps up the UNLV season
UNLV football coach Tony Sanchez wraps up the season. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Herb Jaffe Video
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like