New rock-climbing center OK'd for south Chandler - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

New rock-climbing center OK’d for south Chandler

September 24th, 2020 SanTan Sun News
New rock-climbing center OK’d for south Chandler


Chandler City Council has rezoned land around the municipal airport for the construction of a new indoor rock-climbing gym.

Council authorized the amended zoning of an 8-acre parcel near Gilbert and Germann roads to accommodate a 33,000-square-foot recreation center.

Arches Climbing and Fitness, a Chandler company formed last year, is spearheading the project and plans to install a climbing wall that will be at least 50 feet tall.

Other amenities will include a children’s climbing wall, yoga studio, fitness center, and a courtyard area where climbers can relax and play games.

The company also plans to have one wall dedicated to climbers wanting to test their time scaling a 15-meter course.

“Arches will provide a community space for climbers in the Chandler region to hang out, make friends, and push their physical abilities in a fun and comfortable environment,” the company wrote in planning documents.

The company had to seek approval from the city to revise the land’s zoning to change the height restrictions for buildings in the area.

The city Planning and Zoning Department determined the company’s request complied with the city’s General Plan and encouraged council approval.

Although company officials did not return a call for comment, their website states the facility plans to start hiring employees later this fall.

“We strive to be the home base for the Arizona climbing community by providing a fun, comfortable, and inspiring environment for everyone in our sport,” it states.

Arches was founded by four friends and climbing enthusiasts who have spent years scaling the rocky crags of rural Arizona.

The four founders decided in 2013 they wanted to create a space for the climbing community in the East Valley that was unique among recreational facilities.

“Our team has designed every aspect of Arches – from the walls to the layout to the programs – with great care and detail and believe we can create something truly special for the community here in Arizona,” the company wrote in documents filed with the city.

Arches plans to offer guests either monthly memberships or day passes that will allow them to rent climbing equipment during their stay.

The company has already announced a partnership with Rock Solid Climbing, a Tucson-based climbing gym, that would allow Arches members to get free monthly passes to Rock Solid.

Because of the facility’s close proximity to the Chandler Airport, the company had to seek clearance from the Airport Commission to ensure its 65-foot building wouldn’t interfere with local flight traffic.

The commission unanimously ruled in July the project wouldn’t conflict with the airport’s operations.

“Based on the maximum allowable building heights, the proposed development does not appear to pose a hazard to flight safety or be an airspace obstruction,” a commission memo states.

Prior to obtaining a building permit, the company will have to obtain approval from the Federal Aviation Administration that the project won’t pose a hazard to the airport.