Friday, September 22, 2017

Amazon in Oak Cliff? Prime property owners pitch site for huge HQ


Investors who own a key development site on Oak Cliff's doorstep are pitching the property as a site for Amazon's huge new corporate headquarters.
The site of the old Oak Farms Dairy and other land investor Cienda Partners owns has a front row seat on the downtown Dallas skyline.
The properties are at the south end of the Houston Street Bridge and include the site of the former Burnett Field baseball stadium on Interstate 35E.
"We have more than 50 acres," said Cienda Partner's Barry Hancock. "This is a very good location on the edge of downtown."
Hancock said other real estate is available in the area that would create a larger development site.
The Oak Cliff real estate Cienda Partners is promoting fronts on the planned Trinity Park in the river bottoms.
"Ten city blocks, the site is the largest contiguous site on the Trinity River and in the downtown area," Cienda Partners writes in its formal proposal for the Amazon office. "The site is adjacent to the first stop from downtown on the new $80 million modern streetcar line which connects Oak Cliff to the DART lines at 
Union Station, providing north-south access between downtown and Oak Cliff and to the Bishop Arts District. Two DART Light Rail stations are within walking distance."
Cienda Partners cofounder Phil Wise said the company decided to throw its hat in the ring to attract the huge Amazon development after hearing about the competition.
Amazon is doing a nationwide search for a location where it can build a second corporate headquarters at a cost of about $5 billion, to house up to 50,000 workers.
The digital retailer has said its looking for at least 100 acres in an urban location that's close to a young labor force and has access to public transit.
"We were highly encouraged by some of the city council folks. It really does seem like a center city location like Oak Cliff really fits with what Amazon has done in Seattle," Wise said. "I think it's a good exercise for Dallas to go after this."
Wise said that his firm was encouraged by city officials to put the Oak Cliff property in the running for Amazon's headquarters deal.
North Oak Cliff is one of Dallas' fastest growing urban districts. Developers, retailers and restaurateurs are remaking the old neighborhoods in sight of downtown.
Cienda Partners purchased the old Oak Farms Dairy on Zang Boulevard in 2014 and has been promoting redevelopment of the high-profile property. The investor also acquired the old Burnett Field site in 2014.
Steve Brown/Dallas Morning News