Archive for September, 2010

LEED: Lovin’ Every Exquisite Detail

Posted by    |    September 24th, 2010 at 11:39 am

Last night I had the opportunity to attend the showing of the brand spankin’ new office and residential spaces at 17Seventeen McKinney Ave., otherwise known as Park 17.  IREM invited local property managers and other real estate types to attend the tour, sponsored by Knight Restoration and Precision Landscape Management.

Gables residential tower reflected in windows of 17Seventeen McKinney

17Seventeen McKinney is the first Dallas high-rise building to be pre-certified LEED Gold in core and shell.  A pretty big deal in such a major city.  The neighboring building, the Gables residential tower, is pursuing its LEED New Construction certification.

Tired of hearing about LEED?  Better get used to it.  But take heart, it’s actually pretty cool.  All incoming tenants to 17Seventeen will automatically meet more stringent water requirements of LEED v3 Commercial Interiors.  And something else I learned is that the office building itself does not operate with a central chiller.  Nope, each floor has its own self-contained HVAC unit (otherwise known as a SCUD).  And 35% of power to the building is purchased from renewable resources.

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Sheets Plead Guilty, Headed to Prison

Posted by    |    September 22nd, 2010 at 10:40 am

While you were away on summer vacation, one of Dallas’ high-flying real estate couples was having a much harder time. Nicky Sheets was sentenced to 40 months in federal prison for tax evasion, and he was ordered to repay $2.4 million in back income taxes and penalties. His wife Eleanor Mowery Sheets pleaded guilty in July and faces up to four years in federal prison and at least $400,000 in fines. Her sentencing will be next month on October 12. Their $1.3 million Preston Hollow home was seized by the IRS this summer.

Lower Rents = More Yarn

Posted by    |    September 17th, 2010 at 4:36 pm

One of the best things about being in the retail real estate business is watching the ever-changing face of the retail landscape.  The past few years have been difficult at best as retailers pull back on expansion plans and shopping centers experience growing vacancy.  Nobody likes to see empty windows in shopping centers.

Growing vacancies typically mean lower lease rates as landlords strive to fill their spaces.

There is an upside to this trend, however.  Now that rates are more affordable, more mom-and-pops can take advantage of retail space they might not have been able to afford in the past.  More independent retailers means more cosumer choice and more unique merchandise.

One of my favorite examples of a new independent retailer opening in Dallas is Holley’s Yarn Shoppe.

In the interest of full disclosure, I am a prolific knitter.  Like I tell my friends, “If I’m sittin’, I’m knittin’.”  Sadly, I am addicted to all things yarn.

Dallas knitters and crocheters don’t have very many yarn shops from which to choose.  Typical road trips include The Woolie Ewe in Plano or The Shabby Sheep in downtown Dallas.  But, hallelujah, now we have a yarn shop located right in the middle at which to feed our addiction.

Holley’s is a bright, friendly haven for yarn lovers located at the northeast corner of Inwood Road and Forest Lane.  The shop faces the Tollway – you can’t miss the bright yellow sign.

During my inaugural trip to the store, the ladies on the staff were enthusiastic and encouraged us to just c’mon in and pet the yarn. (more…)

Happy shoppers both north and south

Posted by    |    September 14th, 2010 at 10:18 am

Due to a couple of recent retail developments, I predict some smiling shoppers both north and south of the LBJ loop.

First, Old Navy has just signed a lease for its first new store in the entire United States in over two years.  The site is also Old Navy’s first location ever inside the loop.  The company will open a two-level, 23,326 square foot flagship space at the Shops at Park Lane located at the southeast corner of Park Lane and U.S. 75.

Shops at Park Lane

Second, Urban Outfitters just signed a lease for its first store north of the loop.  The 9,550 square foot lease at The Shops at Legacy is the company’s third store in Dallas/Fort Worth.  The store is scheduled to open in the fall of 2010.

Good news for Dallas, good news for these retailers, and great news for shoppers north and south who have been awaiting these concepts.

Shops at Legacy

Once in real estate, always in real estate?

Posted by    |    September 7th, 2010 at 8:43 am

The weather is cooling, school has started, and business is buzzing again. That can only mean one thing for North Texas’ commercial real estate industry:  the annual NTCAR Expo!

NTCAR (North Texas Commercial Association of Realtors) holds this event each fall to encourage networking, lead generation and communication among the area’s developers, building owners, brokers, contractors, architects, designers, engineers, researchers, financial advisors, economic development groups, real estate media and others.

The largest commercial real estate trade show in the Southwest, the NTCAR Expo boasts 2,000 attendees and more than 100 exhibitors. (more…)