Wednesday, November 24, 2010

DART will complete Green Line and open 15 new stations December 6

Completion of the 28-mile Green Line, the longest light rail construction project in North America, heralds a new era of choices for Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) passengers on Monday, December 6.
Completion of the Green Line from Buckner Boulevard and Elam Road in southeast Dallas to Frankford Road in Carrollton brings new opportunities and destinations, but also requires numerous bus and rail changes to avoid duplication of service. Details of the changes can be found in the service change brochures available on DART vehicles, inside transit centers, by visiting, or by calling 214-979-1111.
New stations open, rail schedules being adjusted
The debut of 15 new stations along the $1.8 billion, 28-mile Green Line is the most prominent part of the service change. The new stations on the southeast corridor in Dallas are Hatcher, Lawnview, Lake June, and Buckner stations. Market Center, Southwestern Medical District/Parkland, Inwood/Love Field, Burbank, Bachman, Walnut Hill/Denton, Royal Lane, Farmers Branch, Downtown Carrollton, Trinity Mills, and North Carrollton/Frankford stations open on the northwest corridor of the Green Line.
The Lake Highlands Station makes its debut between White Rock and LBJ/Skillman stations on the Blue Line. This is DART's first infill station.
Red, Blue, and Green line trains will run every 15 minutes during rush hours instead of every 10 minutes. Extra trains on the Red Line between Downtown Dallas and Parker Road, and on the Green Line between Bachman Station and Downtown Dallas, will produce a 7 1/2-minute frequency during the heaviest a.m. and p.m. ridership periods and new, through service between Bachman and Parker Road stations. Designated as Orange Line trains, they will be extended to Irving when Orange Line operations begin in 2012. Midday, evening, and weekend frequencies will remain unchanged, although specific departure and arrival times on all three lines may vary.
Look for bus schedule changes too
Major bus service changes on December 6 affect more than half of the 130 routes in the system. These changes are designed to complement the new rail network while eliminating costly duplication of service. Most routes in Pleasant Grove, the Stemmons Corridor, Medical District, and Northwest Dallas will see significant changes. Several northeast Dallas bus routes will be modified to reflect ridership patterns, while routes along the Jefferson Boulevard corridor through Oak Cliff and Cockrell Hill will undergo a major overhaul to streamline service.
Customers using buses along the Green Line will notice a number of changes as eighteen new routes will begin to support the new rail service while routes 8, 44, 185, 204, 247, 26, 37, 42, 50, 539, and 165 will be discontinued.
Other specific bus changes include:
  • Route 44 and Route 26 will no longer serve the Southwestern Medical District from downtown Dallas. This area will be connected to two Green Line stations (Southwestern Medical District/Parkland and Inwood/Love Field).
  • Bus routes connecting hospital facilities along Harry Hines to Southwestern Medical/District Parkland Station include 405, 408, 409, 453, and 544.
  • Bus routes connecting medical district facilities along Inwood to Inwood/Love Field Station include 526 and 527.
  • Children's Medical Center has bus service on routes 49, 525, and 822/823.
  • Route 165 connecting Pleasant Grove to downtown Dallas will no longer operate but downtown passengers will be able to access two new Green Line stations, Buckner and Lake June via new and revised bus routes 466, 467, 475, 591, 592, 594, 595, 597, and 842.
  • Bus route modifications in northeast Dallas will focus on reduction of costly route duplication, replacement of low-producing routes, and the opening of the Lake Highlands Station. Changes on several routes occur including the elimination of 519, rerouting of route 60, and the addition of route 467.
  • Changes are also coming to the busy Jefferson Corridor through Oak Cliff and Cockrell Hill. Changes include the elimination of routes 50, 76, and 510, along with the addition of alternative service on routes 376, 512, 311, and 521 and the extension of route 11 to Cockrell Hill.
TRE changes
Fares for the Trinity Railway Express (TRE) will not change. However the fare zone boundary is shifting from the Dallas/Tarrant County line to CentrePort/DFW Airport Station. The fare boundary will equalize fare options for both Dallas and Tarrant County customers and makes it possible from customers from either side of the region to travel to the airport for the same fare. More information on the TRE is available at


(Dallas Morning News) – Kroenke Holdings has formed a partnership to acquire a 42-acre vacant Walnut Hill property that has been for sale since plans fell through for a mixed-use development.
Provident Realty Advisors Inc. foreclosed on the property in October 2009 before construction began after Wachovia Bank had lent more than $40 million on the project.
Wells Fargo Bank took over the property from Wachovia and hired Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP to find a buyer for the tract.
The property at the corner of North Central Expressway and Walnut Hill Lane was previously zoned for a $300 million complex of shopping, apartments and senior housing. However, Dallas-area retail brokers say it would be a challenge to rezone the land for another use after the amount of time put in to obtain the mixed-use qualification.
The DART rail station is two blocks from the site, which is also just north of NorthPark Center in Dallas.
Kroenke Holdings is owned by the billionaire sports team owner E. Stanley Kroenke, who owns the Denver Nuggets basketball team, the St. Louis Rams football club and the Colorado Avalanche hockey team.

Start-up developer Lang Partners building apartments in North Oak Cliff, plans more in Fort Worth

By STEVE BROWN / The Dallas Morning News
A start-up Dallas apartment developer has two new projects – one in North Oak Cliff and one in Fort Worth.
Lang Partners has broken ground on a $30 million, urban-style rental community on Zang Boulevard near Colorado Boulevard and Lake Cliff Park.
The 260-unit, five-story apartment complex is being built on a vacant tract and will include commercial and retail space on the ground floor.
Dallas-based JHP Architecture designed the project.
Units in the project, which will open next summer, will average just over $1,000 a month in rent, Lang Partners vice president John Ausburn said Tuesday.

Kroenke says it doesn't have plans in place yet for Walnut Hill site

The new owners of a prime North Dallas development site say they aren't in a hurry to do anything with the land.

A partnership set up by Missouri-based Kroenke Holdings bought 42 acres at the northwest corner of Walnut Hill Lane and North Central Expressway on Nov. 12 from lenders who had foreclosed on the property.
The vacant land is zoned for a combination of retail, commercial, apartments and residential space.
Representatives of new owner E. Stanley Kroenke said in an announcement that they plan to "improve and develop the property over the coming years."
By Steve Brown/Dallas Morning News

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Bush Library: Groundbreaking Experience

From Real Estate BISNOW....

“Its time to turn dirt,” announced the 43rd President of the United States during a groundbreaking yesterday at his presidential library on the SMU campus in Dallas. We were honored to be there to capture the pomp and excitement.

Pres. George W. Bush
Braving the Secret Service security checks, we snapped this of 43. The former president says that the George W. Bush Presidential Center stands as a reminder that sometimes doing what is necessary is not popular. “Through the triumphs and sorrows—the good days and the bad—the decisions we made together were guided by certain principles," he says. "Free markets are the best way to empower individuals at home and enable people to get out of poverty; and you can spend your money better than the government can spend your money.” Of course, we bet what really excites him is the center is aiming LEED Platinum.

Mark Penny and Bob Bowen
The center will include: a library to house records, from e-mails to official documents; a museum complete with a replica of the oval office; and a research institute. Manhattan Construction Co project exec Mark Penny and Dallas division EVP Bob Bowen tell us construction begins today, with costs projected at $137M. Manhattan built the elder Bush’s library at Texas A&M, Bob tells us, and worked with GW on the construction of the Ballpark at Arlington, when he was the Rangers managing partner. “This has been a tremendously collaborative effort,” Bob notes. Manhattan has spent the past two years planning with the architect, Robert A.M. Stern (dean of the Yale School of Architecture), and landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh, Mark says.

Rendered above, it will open in spring 2013. Mark says it's an aggressive schedule, but the design is complete; the bid process is out and in the process of being awarded. Key mechanical/electrical subs have been on the job for six months (working with BIM) to resolve issues before construction starts, he adds. This is the first presidential library post 9/11, so Mark says security measures (like blast-resistant skin) are incorporated in the project. The building is designed for 100-plus years, with lots of stone and brick to blend in with SMU’s campus.

Missouri developer buys vacant corner at Walnut Hill and North Central Expressway

Dallas Morning News
By STEVE BROWN / The Dallas Morning News One of the most visible building sites in North Dallas has been bought by an out-of-state developer.

Friday, November 05, 2010

Dallas' Cityplace is developing its last 16 acres

By STEVE BROWN / The Dallas Morning News
Sometime in the next week, road crews will start building streets for the last phase of Dallas' Cityplace project.

Today, the project includes more than 1,700 homes and almost 400,000 square feet of retail space."We have about 16 acres left," said Neal Sleeper, president of Cityplace Co. "We started with 130 acres 20 years ago."
But the area was mostly vacant lots at the end of 1990, when a group of investors bought the property northeast of downtown Dallas and hired Sleeper.
Previous plans to turn the district along North Central Expressway into a "city within a city" had stalled because of a regional recession and a change of ownership at Southland Corp., which owned the land.
"We started all over with a new master plan," Sleeper said.
Beginning in the early 1980s, Southland, the company that owned 7-Eleven, embarked on a plan to build more than 60 office towers, residential high-rises, hotels and retail space in the area between Haskell and Lemmon avenues.
"The original plan was for 18 million square feet of space," said John Crawford, who was on the original Cityplace project team and is CEO of Downtown Dallas Inc. "When things fell apart, that became impossible.
"What it has become is a scaled-down version of the original plan that makes more sense for the changing times," he said. "It's been eminently successful."