The Historic Route 66 Association of Arizona today announced a special grant awarded to Veteran Services USA, to repurpose and renew historic elements of the former America’s Best motel at 720 Navajo Boulevard, in Holbrook, Arizona. Motel owner Veteran Services USA intends to pursue several pre-development steps that will elevate the property’s eligibility to receive Arizona state low-income housing financing for the total rehabilitation of the old motel built in 1955. The transformation will pave the way for affordable housing and programs to support veterans experiencing housing and economic instability.
“Our association appreciated that the creation of a mixed-use zoning would positively affect additional businesses beyond just the single grant recipient, and we are pleased to see old Route 66 motels find a new purpose.” Said Nikki Seegers, Director of Operations, Historic Route 66 Association of Arizona. “With these matching funds, we look forward to seeing innovative thinking that will preserve the history of this property, including how the structural facades are saved or rebuilt to honor the motel’s legacies. Route 66 travelers and community members will greatly appreciate the new life and purpose the buildings have found.”
The need to reinvest in the renovation of significant real estate assets along the Route 66 corridor is critical to avoid future unintentional loss. The frequency of overnight motel stays along the Route has diminished while the demand for affordable residential solutions has increased significantly. In addition, the integration of new commercial tenants will create an attractive streetscape for those living, working and visiting the area.
“The City of Holbrook is excited about the potential redevelopment of the property. Said City of Holbrook Planning and Zoning Administrator, Jason Foutz. “We have been working closely with the developer to determine what solution will be the best going forward. The zoning solutions that we are exploring will provide greater flexibility to property owners in redeveloping their real estate in order to meet modern demands and benefit from that overall economic impact.”
About Historic Route 66 Association of Arizona
On February 18, 1987, a group of 15 passionate individuals met at the Copper Cart restaurant in Seligman, Arizona, and formed the Historic Route 66 Association of Arizona. Led by Angel Delgadillo, a barber who grew up on Route 66, this group was committed to sustaining and further developing the Highway that was the original heart and soul of America.
Route 66, originally built as the first cross continental highway, with stretches of it today showcasing the lasting parts of American history with world-wide importance. Route 66 might have been just a page in history books if it were not for the Association which led to the renaissance of Route 66, putting it on the map as a destination in its own right. Not just in Arizona, but across all eight states the roadway covers.
Working tirelessly, this non-profit association has never lost sight of its mission to preserve, protect, and promote the Route. Over the years, the Association’s efforts have resulted in Arizona state’s designation of the Route being an Arizona Historic Road, a National Scenic Byway, and attaining All-American Road status, the highest National designation possible. In addition, the Association continues to assist all of Arizona’s Route 66 communities with preservation and marketing projects.
About Veteran Services USA
Veteran Services USA (VSUSA) empowers veterans and seniors by offering services to build successful life transitions with access to workforce and independent housing; whole health services; and social service programs in communities across the United States. For transitioning service members, veterans & families, VSUSA seeks to provide transitional programs featuring innovative training, educational counseling, and career connections through robust public-private partnerships, applying proven community and strength-based approaches to building resilience, treating trauma, and preventing suicide.