Monday, July 28, 2008

Construction of a $150M Oak Lawn Redevelopment Under way

The first phase of a $150 million, 20-acre Oak Lawn redevelopment will open in early 2009.

Construction is under way on Cityville Oak Park on Lemmon Avenue just north of the Dallas North Tollway.

Developer Inland American Communities Group Inc. is building 372 apartments and 18,500 square feet of retail space in a series of three- to five-story buildings.

Architect James, Harwick + Partners Inc. designed the complex, which replaces several blocks of older rental housing and retail buildings just southwest of Highland Park.

The apartments will rent for $880 to $2,300 per month.

Inland American will start leasing the units this fall.

"North Oak Lawn has been a little underutilized," said Inland American's Todd Cook.

"We think having a large mixed-use development will definitely revitalize that area."

A second phase of construction will include 250 more apartments.

And the developer has set aside about 10 acres for townhouses.

Cityville is one of the largest of several such developments in the Oak Lawn area, which has been considered a more affordable rental location than nearby Uptown.

"It is a little bit cheaper, but not as big a price difference as you might expect," said Greg Willett, vice president with Carrollton-based apartment analyst M/PF YieldStar Inc.

"We are seeing more construction activity in these locations," he said.

"And as interest in doing that has risen, the land costs are going up."

Along with Inland American, other developers, including Lane Co. and Crosland Group, are building apartment projects in Oak Lawn.

Inland American – whose parent company is based in Illinois – last year combined its operations with Dallas-based builder FirstWorthing Corp.

Along with the Oak Park project, the developer is working on apartment communities at Lemmon Avenue and Cole in Uptown, and at the former Loew's Theatre site on Haskell Avenue near U.S. Highway 75.