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#51 prideftw

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:00 AM

The best gay bars too, lol

#52 Russ Graham

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:02 AM

Just some numbers to put all this in perspective:

Fort Worth's density is 2,181 people per square mile, which covers 339 square miles of the North Texas landscape. This means we are less dense than such legendarily sprawling metropolises as Phoenix (2,798), Houston (3,501), El Paso (2,543), and even Arlington (3,811). The CBD (or just the 76102 zip code) is even less dense than the city at large; with only 6,483 residents, the downtown zip code has a density of 1,448 people per square mile, one of the least populated areas in the DFW metroplex.

I think it's great to talk about adding density, population, and businesses to the central city - I think we need to think in terms of "4 or 5 times" the density that's already there, if we're going to see development on the scale of what we all want to see in terms of downtown.

Sources:
http://en.wikipedia....s_by_population
http://www.city-data...zips/76102.html

#53 prideftw

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:08 AM

That will improve with my high-rise living developments. Build more residential skyscrapers and people will come. There are lots of people who would prefer to live downtown any way. With that build more offices and campaign to get more businesses to move here and boom it will happen

#54 cberen1

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:23 AM

Clubs have always been attracted to slummy areas. They have to. Margins aren't always great, liability is very high. Many, many good clubs only exist or are only popular for a little while. Most of them have to be cheap to set up and cheap to walk away from. That's why Deep Ellum, Oak Lawn, FW's Northside/stockyards, etc. are homes to lots of clubs and bars.

Dallas actually doesn't have a lot of very high-end clubs. They've got some extremely high-end bars, but that's a different animal.

I think the key is reaching a critical mass of clubs in one area. That way one goes down and another one pops up and the area survives. FW has never done this well.

#55 JBB

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:32 AM



People need a reason to not drive all the to the Westend area of Dallas


1992 called and they want this comment back. Seriously, the West End is a ghost town. My wife and I ate at a restaurant there before a concert at the AAC this summer on a Saturday night and there was no one there. Literally.


When I say the westend I am talking about Cedersprings. Which is busy every night. All of the Gay bars are over there dude. So what ever


I've never heard that area called "the westend", so I assumed you meant the West End area in downtown.

#56 prideftw

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:38 AM




People need a reason to not drive all the to the Westend area of Dallas


1992 called and they want this comment back. Seriously, the West End is a ghost town. My wife and I ate at a restaurant there before a concert at the AAC this summer on a Saturday night and there was no one there. Literally.


When I say the westend I am talking about Cedersprings. Which is busy every night. All of the Gay bars are over there dude. So what ever


I've never heard that area called "the westend", so I assumed you meant the West End area in downtown.

lol, okay, there is nothing going on in the westend part of Downtown Dallas or any part of cbd Dallas

#57 Jeriat

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:53 AM

Just some numbers to put all this in perspective:

Fort Worth's density is 2,181 people per square mile, which covers 339 square miles of the North Texas landscape. This means we are less dense than such legendarily sprawling metropolises as Phoenix (2,798), Houston (3,501), El Paso (2,543), and even Arlington (3,811). The CBD (or just the 76102 zip code) is even less dense than the city at large; with only 6,483 residents, the downtown zip code has a density of 1,448 people per square mile, one of the least populated areas in the DFW metroplex.

I think it's great to talk about adding density, population, and businesses to the central city - I think we need to think in terms of "4 or 5 times" the density that's already there, if we're going to see development on the scale of what we all want to see in terms of downtown.

Sources:
http://en.wikipedia....s_by_population
http://www.city-data...zips/76102.html



Downtown, (future) Trinity Uptown, Stockyards, West 7th, Cultural District, Near South, "Midtown"/Medical District, near E. Lancaster = "THE CORE".

That's how I would market it.

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#58 Fort Worthology

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 02:34 PM


Music scene's are important to. Look at Austin. Fort Worth's music scene revolves around Billy Bob's... Something cool and hip would go great in 7th. 

 

I have to take some issue with this statement - and apologies because it's not exactly on-topic - but I feel I should speak up.  I have a certain unique perspective having retired from urbanism blogging to play rock music.   :)

 

The Fort Worth music scene doesn't revolve around Billy Bob's anymore.  I'd say it hasn't for a while.  I mean, sure, there's some *part* of it that does, but the country/western music thing in FW is rapidly becoming less and less a focal point.

 

My band's played shows at places like Lola's and The Grotto and we've gotten to know a lot of people in the FW music scene, and in the last six months to one year it's really starting to blow up and diversify and become something special.  There are so many amazing bands in town in a huge variety of genres, and there's starting to be a good collection of venues and such (some you'd probably never suspect).

 

I've heard knowledgeable folks say that they think Fort Worth might just have one of the best indie music scenes in Texas, if not the Southwest.  I'd be remiss if I didn't plug my own group, The Diabolical Machines, and I recommend us if you're a fan of indie rock & power pop (our influences include The Long Winters, The New Pornographers, and Wild Flag), but there's AMAZING talent in this town these days.  Just off the top of my head there are tons of local bands you should get to know, in about a zillion different genres:

 

Year of the Bear

The Longshots

Mailman

Jacob Furr & The Only Road

The Breakfast Machine

Ice Eater

The Burning Hotels

The Phuss

Skeleton Coast

Cleanup

Madras

We The Sea Lions

The Cush

Lindby

Bitch Bricks

Doom Ghost

The Frisky Disco

Panic Volcanic

Secret Ghost Champion

War Party

etc. etc. etc.

 

And in terms of venues, there's some greatness to be found - The Grotto, Lola's, The Live Oak, 1919 Hemphill for punk shows, Magnolia Motor Lounge, Friday on the Green for the outdoor festival thing, The Wherehouse, The Basement Bar (despite being in the Stockyards they have more variety in music) etc. etc.  And even some venues you wouldn't expect.  I caught a show by local math rock band Cleanup and their opening act Arbitrary Montage at Zio Carlo the other day, of all places.

 

We don't have a lot of critical mass for these venues yet, which is where density comes into play (and he brought it all back around on topic!).  Getting another few hundred/thousand units in the neighborhoods around these hotspots will help, and will help upcoming places like South Main establish their own scenes as well.

 

Hit up Fort Live for a great rundown of the weekly show scene - Lyle and Casey do a fan-tastic job of getting the word out about everything.


- Writer, musician, photographer, general nerd.

 


#59 Austin55

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 09:04 PM

5 star post Kevin, thanks for spreading the knowledge. I will really need to check some of this out.



#60 cberen1

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 09:10 AM

Getting another few hundred/thousand units in the neighborhoods around these hotspots will help, and will help upcoming places like South Main establish their own scenes as well.


 
Two questions (because I've gotten old and don't get to go have fun anymore): 1) where are all these clubs/venues, and 2) do you think club style night life mixes well with residential development?
 
My ideal situation would be for there to be cheap reliable public transportation into the entertainment districts with lots of residential development not too far away.



#61 Fort Worthology

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 05:41 PM

Getting another few hundred/thousand units in the neighborhoods around these hotspots will help, and will help upcoming places like South Main establish their own scenes as well.


 
Two questions (because I've gotten old and don't get to go have fun anymore): 1) where are all these clubs/venues, and 2) do you think club style night life mixes well with residential development?
 
My ideal situation would be for there to be cheap reliable public transportation into the entertainment districts with lots of residential development not too far away.

 

In cities that have matured to this point, there are a variety of living options for everybody to choose from.  "Entertainment districts" is the wrong way to think of it, IMHO, as in my experience they tend to come across as artificial and lack the residential mix to make them into real places.  There should be an organic and natural mixture of all these uses.  If you wish to live farther away from the action, you can choose to, and if you wish to live right in the middle of it, you can choose to.  Such is the nature of a healthy and vibrant city where this choice is available.  You might want to live two floors up and a building over from a rock venue, or you might want to live a couple of blocks' walk, or you might want to live a dozen blocks, or whatever.

 

The venues presently are in a variety of places, some pre-dating redevelopment and some more recent.  The Live Oak is right in the neighborhood, not far from homes.  Lola's and The Grotto are a little over a block off 7th Street in the as-yet-un-redeveloped Linwood-ish area.  Magnolia Motor Lounge is basically smack dab across the street from the West 7th lofts.


- Writer, musician, photographer, general nerd.

 


#62 prideftw

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 06:32 PM

I WONDER IF THE CITY UPDATED THE LOWER INCOME AREAS AS WELL AS THE MORE UP-SCALE ONE'S , IF THAT WOULD ALSO HELP WITH BRINGING MORE PEOPLE IN AND MAKING THE CITY MORE DENSE? LIKE THE PROJECTS OFF LANCASTER NEAR DOWNTOWN OR SOME NEW HOUSING TO AIDE IN THE REDUCTION OF THE HOMELESS POPULATION THAT IS PROBABLY GOING UNACCOUNTED FOR. JUST A QUESTION ;)



#63 ron4Life

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 09:15 AM

Well hopefully this information fit this particular topic:

---

Video by TED with speaker Janette Sadik-Khan about NYC street transformation

http://bit.ly/15YdsVW

---

imo I think it would be great if this organization was to host a conference like that here



#64 prideftw

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 11:04 AM

i think Fort Worth is doing the same thing as New York in many ways, its just not being talked about as much



#65 Austin55

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 11:28 AM

Care to elaborate?

#66 prideftw

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 11:43 AM

we have the bike lanes and the city seems to think about pedestrians in almost every area that they redevelop. It seems to me that like New York, Fort Worth is thinking about more than just the driver and we also have city bikes. 



#67 renamerusk

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Posted 10 December 2015 - 08:28 PM

Here is a previous blog I made 3 years ago -

 

 

Thanks for the info on height standards, you all. But I wasn't referring to what's allowable, only what's marketable in Fort Worth. The trend seems to be low-to-medium height buildings, even in the downtown environs. We've had discussions about why the new Sundance Square buildings are not high rises, why a prospective hotel builder on Calhoun Street may get by with only six floors, and the fact there hasn't been a high-rise in all of FW since the Carnegie Building.


Though this may not be exactly the appropriate place for this topic, here is my take:

Fort Worth adheres steadfastly to the “down economy rationale” and its regional sister cities of Dallas, Austin, Oklahoma City don’t or have not. Caution should be taken when you see what is happening in these cities that you do not believe your own eyes else, you will be left in disbelief.

If you fall prey to a conspiracy as I have that Fort Worth is virtually controlled by a small group of hometown power brokers, then you may began to question as I do the trend of low-medium height buildings and underwhelming projects across the city that do not have the potential to threaten the profitability of the major landowners in the CBD such as Sundance Square Mall and Simpson Properties. It is as though the free market is being hampered by the influential power of a few; and Fort Worth will someday evolve into a more sophisticated real estate market like those in its own region. Until then, a major speculative project, be it office or hotel, developed by an outside group would be a threat to these power brokers.

Keep Fort Worth folksy

 

 

Durango Texas makes a point that requires some soul searching on the part of all of us. 

 

IMO, Fort Worth to my knowledge, is the only major Texas city with a pseudo mall smack in the center of its downtown.  If Sundance Square walks like a mall, quacks like a mall, then it is a mall...it has it "food court", retail shops, cinema, free parking, etc. The only difference between Hulen and Sundance Square [Mall] is that one is climate controlled and that one is not.

 

I will repeat how thrilled that I am with the Jetta/Frost Tower (JFT) and how extremely disappointed that I am in the XOM garage.  While the JFT project makes complete sense to me and demonstrates how to maximize prime CBD real property; the XOM project demonstrates how to waste an equally prime piece of CBD real property.  And whether it is true or not, JFT appears willing to take on the 800 pound SS while XOM appears unwilling to do so.  With JFT quickly filling up, I believe that XOM would have the same success and would likely attract new occupants to the CBD from outside of the region.

 

So Durango Texas in the following blog really does stir something in me.

 

http://durangotexas....ng-boom-is.html



#68 JBB

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Posted 10 December 2015 - 08:35 PM

I have a hard time taking someone seriously when they assert that the only difference between Hulen Mall and Sundance Square is a roof and HVAC system.

#69 renamerusk

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Posted 10 December 2015 - 11:11 PM

 

....but if that leads you to a point where you think you could look Ed Bass or Tex Moncrief in the eye and tell them they give less of a damn about Fort Worth than you do because they're not willing to plunk down a billion dollars for a sports franchise, you're probably a bigger douchebag than I would want to be associated with. Sorry if that sounds harsh, but that's how little I think of that line of thinking.

 

I can assure you that I am not a douchebag, and I firmly believe there's merit in my opinion.

 

 

 

I have a hard time taking someone seriously when they assert that the only difference between Hulen Mall and Sundance Square is a roof and HVAC system.

 

Perhaps this is a time to remember that ideas are to be scrutinized in thoughtful conversation; and that the messenger is not to be denigrated.  Instead the messenger's idea is to be debated.

 

I also believe that there is serious merit in my opinion, and more importantly, I grant that belief to other opinions when given.

 

That having been said now -

 

As for the idea that Downtown Fort Worth lacks the expected ongoing building boom; and if so, is this lack of a "boom" in Fort Worth abnormal considering what is happening in other major cities in the state - there may be an explanation that I am will to put up to debate.

 

Pointing out that a 35 square block area of Downtown is controlled by one leasing corporation similar to that of a mall and how a mall controls growth in and around its perimeter is a observation that one can agree with or not agree with; but it is a fact and it may possibly explain why a boom is not occurring.  The only boom seems to come when that one leasing corporation decides to develop upon its own time line.  

 

When the occasion arises to visit a mall, shoppers are put on notice of the private property rights of the mall ownership and the single leasing office for the entire "block" of retail, restaurants, etc.

 

You can read similar by-law for Sundance Square (SS); and that makes the mall analogy appropriate in my opinion.  I think that SS is a great place but I also understand its fundamentals. Just because the walls that surround SS are invisible does not negate the that it employs a mall-like business model.  Perhaps these are the fundamentals that outside developers understand too and leads them to decide from making an investment that is too close to SS and even to shy away from Downtown entirely.   This is one of the reasons why I am so impressed with Jetta/Frost Tower; they displayed the courage to compete with SS.

 

Fort Worth was at the heart of the shell gas boom, yet the office boom did not actually materialize on the scale that one might have anticipated. XOM, for what ever reason, has been a great disappointment while in OKCity, at least one notable super tall materialized along with other smaller projects.   

 

So, I admit that I don't really know for sure the explanation for the lack of a significant building boom, except that I do understand how the controlling aspects inherent with a monopoly; and I do understand that by a great number of measurements, Sundance Square is a monopoly.  My guess is that developers really get spooked by a powerfully connected monopoly.



#70 JBB

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Posted 10 December 2015 - 11:53 PM

XTO didn't build a super tall building in FW but they invested a fortune in restoring a super tall building's amount of space in historic properties. I think it's pretty obvious why they didn't need this giant new building that some seem to think they owed the city. During much of that boom, Transport Life sat empty (until XTO bought and restored it) and both former Tandy towers sat empty. Couple that with the large number of surface lots that still sit empty downtown and I think you're seeing supply and demand at work. It's not as sexy as a conspiracy, but it's held true for a pretty long time.

#71 johnfwd

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 07:09 AM

The Sundance Square monopoly is simply private enterprise doing what urban planners in the public sector like to call "managed growth."



#72 Doohickie

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 11:08 AM

Let's say XTO had built a supertall building during the boom.  We're now approaching a bust with energy prices falling.  Would we be left with empty towers and blighted sections of downtown?


My blog: Doohickie

#73 renamerusk

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 12:44 PM

Let's say XTO had built a supertall building during the boom.  We're now approaching a bust with energy prices falling.  Would we be left with empty towers and blighted sections of downtown?

 

Why would that not apply in other Texas cities too? 

 

But a supertall in waiting would also put Downtown in a position to compete with other cities who have surplus office inventory on hand when a company next comes along looking where to relocate a large pool of its white collar workforce.



#74 renamerusk

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 12:46 PM

The Sundance Square monopoly is simply private enterprise doing what urban planners in the public sector like to call "managed growth."

 

Not against private enterprise; just offering a possible explanation for the absence of a building boom that seems to be flourishing in other Texas cities.



#75 renamerusk

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 12:52 PM

XTO didn't build a super tall building in FW but they invested a fortune in restoring a super tall building's amount of space in historic properties. I think it's pretty obvious why they didn't need this giant new building that some seem to think they owed the city. During much of that boom, Transport Life sat empty (until XTO bought and restored it) and both former Tandy towers sat empty. Couple that with the large number of surface lots that still sit empty downtown and I think you're seeing supply and demand at work. It's not as sexy as a conspiracy, but it's held true for a pretty long time.

 

Of course, XTO is not XOM;  XOM is Jetta Operations on steroids.

 

Obviously, XOM does not owe it to the city; it owes it to its shareholders as it seems patently unproductive to build a strip mall like retail component topped by a nine story workweek garage in a CBD.

 

I would argue that Jetta has already demonstrated how an O&G company can received an immediate return upon its investment with the long term leasing of a major corporation as one of its tenants.

 

So it is that I remain bewildered and deeply disappointed with what XOM has planned for the Landmark Block.



#76 Jeriat

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 01:21 PM

 

XTO didn't build a super tall building in FW but they invested a fortune in restoring a super tall building's amount of space in historic properties. I think it's pretty obvious why they didn't need this giant new building that some seem to think they owed the city. During much of that boom, Transport Life sat empty (until XTO bought and restored it) and both former Tandy towers sat empty. Couple that with the large number of surface lots that still sit empty downtown and I think you're seeing supply and demand at work. It's not as sexy as a conspiracy, but it's held true for a pretty long time.

 

Of course, XTO is not XOM.  XOM is JOT on steroids.  So it is that I remain bewildered and deeply disappointed with what XOM has planned for the Landmark Block.

 

 

If it happens, I'll just pretend it doesn't exist. 


7fwPZnE.png

 

8643298391_d47584a085_b.jpg


#77 John T Roberts

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 05:59 PM

Let's look at the bright side.  Maybe this parking garage can fill a short term need for XOM.  Then, when and if, the need arises, they (or another developer) can demolish the garage and build a major high rise on that site.



#78 Urbndwlr

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 06:15 PM

True. I hate big garages - think they are dead spaces in urban neighborhoods.

 

Look at this another way: 

By adding around 850 parking stalls at 7th and Houston, XTO is shifting the parking supply to a vertical form, essentially freeing up the equivalent of SEVEN city blocks of surface parking. 

 

Even before any of those surface lots are developed, the addition of 850 more stalls frees up more parking inventory, which is important to many older office buildings in the southern half of Downtown.  So it should facilitate a few more people working in the southern half of Downtown. 

 

I am not advocating we build a ton of huge new garages - but they do allow for more dense development and hopefully the elimination of some of too-plentiful surface parking lots. 



#79 renamerusk

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 09:47 PM

Let's look at the bright side.  Maybe this parking garage can fill a short term need for XOM.  Then, when and if, the need arises, they (or another developer) can demolish the garage and build a major high rise on that site.

 

I see that you and I are on the same wave length now that I have had time to douse my flaming scalp. :mellow:



#80 Austin55

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Posted 12 December 2015 - 12:23 AM

There are now just 2 completely empty blocks in DTFW's core, and both of those have proposals for them (XTO Garage, Sundance Hotel) The largest undeveloped land is the parking lot that shares a lot with the W.T. Waggoner building. The 4th largest also has a proposal (Frost Tower)



#81 John T Roberts

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Posted 12 December 2015 - 08:18 AM

Austin, the Frost Tower is not a proposal.  They have started construction with the street barricades going up earlier this week, and the asphalt on the parking lot being scraped off, as of Friday.  Permits have been filed with the appropriate authorities.  The contractor was actually excavating today.



#82 gdvanc

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Posted 12 December 2015 - 03:02 PM

Here is a previous blog I made 3 years ago -
 

<snip>

Fort Worth adheres steadfastly to the “down economy rationale” and its regional sister cities of Dallas, Austin, Oklahoma City don’t or have not. Caution should be taken when you see what is happening in these cities that you do not believe your own eyes else, you will be left in disbelief.

<snip>

 
Durango Texas makes a point that requires some soul searching on the part of all of us. 
 
IMO, Fort Worth to my knowledge, is the only major Texas city with a pseudo mall smack in the center of its downtown.  If Sundance Square walks like a mall, quacks like a mall, then it is a mall...it has it "food court", retail shops, cinema, free parking, etc. The only difference between Hulen and Sundance Square [Mall] is that one is climate controlled and that one is not.
 
<snip>

 

Dallas, Austin and Oklahoma City are centers of their economic regions and will develop the way regional centers do. It is difficult for Fort Worth to compete for relocations for companies looking for density in available legal services, financial/accounting services, etc. Fort Worth has these things, but not to the scale of the other cities you mention, and it's not even close. Not all companies are looking for that, of course, but for the relocations of companies who don't need that economic density Fort Worth is competing with places like Plano and Addison. This can certainly change, but this is something to put on a 20-30 year plan; development and investment decisions made today would have to be patiently aligned with that long-term timeframe or as the decades slip peacefully by we'll find ourselves far short of the goal. It's hard to be optimistic about that because short-term thinking is hardened into the American culture.

 

As for Sundance Square being a "pseudo mall" (with mall cops, even), let's remember that malls were the movement of downtown shopping and entertainment away from the city streets and into air-conditioned buildings (then fairly novel) nestled in charcoal-waves of asphalt. This was an inevitability as people migrated away from the city centers and increasingly relied on automobiles to move themselves and their purchases about. Calling Sundance a pseudo mall is roughly equivalent, then, to calling Ridgmar a pseudo downtown. And isn't it interesting that the newest and most successful 'malls' have taken that thought to the next level?

 

Re-seeding Fort Worth's city center with what was once common has required free parking because the level of economic activity needed to support this still requires getting people to drive in from their perfect little Pleasant Valley suburbs. We can hope that this seed takes root, though, and will some day stand on its own.

 

 


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#83 renamerusk

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Posted 12 December 2015 - 11:23 PM

 

Dallas, Austin and Oklahoma City are centers of their economic regions and will develop the way regional centers do. It is difficult for Fort Worth to compete for relocations for companies looking for density in available legal services, financial/accounting services, etc. Fort Worth has these things, but not to the scale of the other cities you mention, and it's not even close. Not all companies are looking for that, of course, but for the relocations of companies who don't need that economic density Fort Worth is competing with places like Plano and Addison. This can certainly change, but this is something to put on a 20-30 year plan; development and investment decisions made today would have to be patiently aligned with that long-term timeframe or as the decades slip peacefully by we'll find ourselves far short of the goal......

 

So Dallas is larger than Houston.  We know that this is incorrect.  Dallas is larger than Houston only when Fort Worth is lumped in with Dallas.  I would be comfortable wagering that at least 20% of the Dallas number is actually Fort Worth and making us more or less equal to San Antonio.

 

http://www.freeby50....a-per-city.html

 

Almost all counts of anything regularly lumps the two cities into one.  The bottom line: numbers can be misleading. 

 

What seems to make Dallas office market different from Fort Worth is the diversity of developers participating there as oppose to here. There is a substantial amount of speculative office space available, u/c or planned in Dallas that can be shown to companies contemplating a relocation or having a regional presence; not nearly enough when it comes to Fort Worth.  The difference too is the shear number of developers in Dallas - just the Big Two in Fort Worth.

 

In Dallas, there was and still is Trammel Crow, who had and has a high rise mentality - the result is 8 or so +40-story speculative towers. In Houston, its Hines.

 

In Fort Worth, there is Mr. Bass, who has a low rise mentality and Mr. Simpson, who loves to restore properties.  The Bass or The Simpson approach will not garner a major relocation but instead both will bring in small cottage companies instead.  

 

What Jetta Frost demonstrates is that a high rise speculative office project can succeed in Downtown particularly when the major high rises in Downtown have surpassed the 3-1/2 decades mark.  Remember, Jetta found the excellent urban ecosystem as a major factor in choosing to remain and build in Downtown; and so did Frost Bank. Jetta has also demonstrated that it does not require a 20-30 year plan but the fortitude and vision to build it now so that "they" will come.

 

Do I believe that a XOM project of 200k office space for self + 600k speculative office space available for one or two co-tenants totaling a combine 800k would have worked?  Yes I do.  If the market has worked for Jetta, then why would it not had worked for XOM?



#84 gdvanc

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Posted 13 December 2015 - 03:13 AM

I didn't compare Dallas to Houston. I didn't even mention Houston. I only said Dallas is the economic center of its region, which it is. Houston is the economic center of an entirely different region located some distance away to the southeast. Near the gulf, I'm told.

 

It's unfortunately true that many available statistics are published at the regional level. However, there are some that are not. One source is County Business Patterns data published by the Census Bureau. It's not by city, but it's close enough for our purposes. If you drill down on the NAIC codes that represent the types of businesses and services a large corporation would want to have nearby - things like accounting and advertising and legal services and technical services and so on - our spoiled big brother to the east has not only significantly more of those types of firms it has larger ones - the kind that a Fortune 500 company does business with. Dallas simply has scale there that we don't have yet.

 

Dallas does seem to have those developers willing to build large. Part of that may be ascribed to differences in mentality between developers in Dallas and those in Fort Worth, but there are also differences in economic activity, in risk and perception of risk, and probably a number of other things I'm too sleepy to think of. I believe most commercial developers don't care where they make money. They may be missing an opportunity here, but those with a long history of success have a lot more experience evaluating that market than I do and I'll leave that to them.

 

What the Jetta property demonstrates is that Jetta Operating believes in the local office market. One new high rise in 7 (and counting) years does not suggest to me that someone (who exactly?) should just start building stuff and that having the fortitude and vision to use a movie quote as an investment strategy is preferable to a long-term plan to make Fort Worth a corporate destination (assuming that's even the right goal).

 

600k of spec? That seems like a lot. As far as I know, the market hasn't actually worked yet for Jetta. Last I heard, one tenant was taking 'about 3 floors'. It's early. I think (and certainly hope) they'll be successful, but brother filling the 160k-200k leftover from what they use themselves in no way implies the local market can absorb an additional 600k. 

 

One final thing to keep in mind is that Jetta is a private company (as was XTO) and can put money wherever its private owners want to put it. Publicly traded XOM, from what I can tell, appears to be making pretty good money investing in petroleum and natural gas and things like that and has not found it necessary to venture into commercial property speculation. Once we run out of oil, though, who knows?


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#85 renamerusk

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Posted 13 December 2015 - 11:28 AM

1 - I didn't compare Dallas to Houston. ...It's unfortunately true that many available statistics are published at the regional level...... Dallas simply has scale there that we don't have yet.

 

2 - Dallas does seem to have those developers willing to build large. Part of that may be ascribed to differences in mentality between developers in Dallas and those in Fort Worth, but there are also differences in economic activity, in risk and perception of risk, and probably a number of other things..... I believe most commercial developers don't care where they make money. They may be missing an opportunity here, but those with a long history of success have a lot more experience evaluating that market than I do and I'll leave that to them.

 

3 - What the Jetta property demonstrates is that Jetta Operating believes in the local office market. One new high rise in 7 (and counting) years does not suggest to me that someone (who exactly?) should just start building stuff and that having the fortitude and vision to use a movie quote as an investment strategy is preferable to a long-term plan to make Fort Worth a corporate destination (assuming that's even the right goal).

 

4 - 600k of spec? That seems like a lot. As far as I know, the market hasn't actually worked yet for Jetta. Last I heard, one tenant was taking 'about 3 floors'. It's early. I think (and certainly hope) they'll be successful, but brother filling the 160k-200k leftover from what they use themselves in no way implies the local market can absorb an additional 600k. 

 

5 - One final thing to keep in mind is that Jetta is a private company (as was XTO) and can put money wherever its private owners want to put it. Publicly traded XOM, from what I can tell, appears to be making pretty good money investing in petroleum and natural gas and things like that and has not found it necessary to venture into commercial property speculation.

 

I will argue that:

 

1. Neither did I compare Dallas to Houston but in a couple of  ways:

 

 A. to point out the manner in which one uses a more detail statistical base, Houston comes in 2nd to Dallas [Fort Worth& Dallas]. Reading DFW data as Dallas has had the affect of defaulting to Dalla alone.  Google for a hotel in Fort Worth and you get "Hotels in Dallas (Fort Worth) ..search for flights from Fort Worth and you get "Flights from Dallas", etc. etc. etc.

 B. to point out that both Dallas and Houston legacy developers chose to build high rises and Fort Worth legacy developers chose to recreate or restore late 19th and early 20th century building.

 

2. Having just pointed out the different approaches of the legacy developers, other then the degree of synenergy  the "high rise" v. "restore/recreate" models generate,  just what are the actual risks of doing business in Fort Worth that you perceive?  As I see it, both Dallas and Fort Worth share the same airport, natural resources, roadways, comparable school systems, climate.  It should also not be forgotten, that 35 blocks (33%) of Downtown Fort Worth is owned by a single developer.  Imagine if 33% of Manhattan was owned by Rockefeller Center or single ownership at that scale was in place at any other city.

 

3. I would agree with your theory "ascribing the difference in mentality" as the cause.  When in the 80's,  Bass, Woodbine, Burnett approached the city and announced plans for high rise buildings, Fort Worth was 100% on board; and if Bass or Simpson were to announce new high rises, Fort Worth would be on board again today.  Yes this happens in Dallas, and it would happen here too.  I think you rely too much on the notion of a "plan".  So I ask when, where,and how did Dallas implement its 30 Year People's Party Plan aimed at securing their dominance over the region?  I also read that Dallas recruits "white collar jobs" and Fort Worth does not. I foolishly thought that a company recruits personnel -- not a city.

 

4. Jetta seems to be on target to meet its goal.  Our understanding is that Jetta is using 3 floors and the remaining floors are speculative.  Jetta could have built the typical 4-6 story building but chose to build a mixed use project for the future instead.  Jetta represents a renewed phase in Downtown projects in that it is primarily a speculative building.  It also mirrors what one sees in Dallas.  And when speaking of Dallas, speculative projects have continued to hollow out the older core of Downtown Dallas; and here, lets not forget the surplus of mid to late 20th Century "zombie' buildings in Downtown Dallas.

 

5. Privately-owned or Publicly traded is an odd position to take as an explanation.  The principles of economics suggest that the environment throughout Texas and Oklahoma is favorable to speculative projects if they are done smartly.  Argue, if possible, that Fort Worth is not in the center of the TX/OK region.  If you are XOM or Saudia Arabia, Inc., you believe that oil&gas will be king again; and you would build a parking garage or you would vote against a global agreement to address climate change.  However, you can be an O&G company like Jetta that diversifies it holdings to better reflect the 21st Century onward; or you can be an O&G company like XOM that was born in the 19th Century, grew up in the 20th century and hopes to be stay atop by denying the inevitable emergence of renewable energy and relying upon a population that is decreasing its consumption of oil and gas for a variety of reasons.

 

Addenum:

 

"Not all companies are looking for that, of course, but for the relocations of companies who don't need that economic density Fort Worth is competing with places like Plano and Addison". gdvanc 12/13/15

 

Strongly disagree with that statement.  Both Downtowns Dallas and Fort Worth lost out to the suburbs in the latest rounds of corporate relocation.  The proof of this came out of the mouth of Mr. Rawlings, Mayor of Dallas.  Downtowns have no chance when a corporation seeks the campus format for its headquarters; but if a company seeks consolidation into a single structure, then Downtown is and should become a viable option. A viable block of  state of the art speculative space is needed to be competitive.  Here is where XOM possibly missed an opportunity.



#86 John T Roberts

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Posted 13 December 2015 - 11:57 AM

Another thing to consider is that overbuilding not only leads to vacant mid to late 20th Century buildings, it also leads to vacant older historic buildings.  Then the owners or developers claim they can't put enough money into the older properties.  This leads to demolition of the oldest buildings and they become parking lots.  One of the things that I don't want to see is our "historic skyscrapers" being torn down for parking lots.  Fort Worth has a reputation for being a preservation minded city, but in reality, the only thing that has saved our historic skyscrapers is lack of aggressive development.  Most of our downtown buildings are not designated as Historic and Cultural Landmarks.  What little historic designation we have is Demolition Delay.  What that means, is basically, 181 days after going to the Landmarks Commission for permission to demolish the building, it comes down.



#87 renamerusk

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Posted 13 December 2015 - 01:36 PM

Another thing to consider is that overbuilding not only leads to vacant mid to late 20th Century buildings, it also leads to vacant older historic buildings.....

 

And that is the case.  I love Downtown.  Had XOM shown a bit more sensitivity to the surrounding cityscape, in the order of a Sundance West Parking, instead of it throwing down a cheaply and poorly conceived project smack in the heart of a Downtown which is filled with charm and grace; then this I might have been able to stomach.  

 

It is possible to both functionality and charm in the design of a project; and the two are not mutually exclusive of one another.  XOM has demonstrated that it really has little regards for the latter.  After first coming to the DDRB and being shamed, XOM returned less than 60 days to that same DDRB just barely less toned deft than before and ye XOMt was granted approval having made for what I can imagine are one or two indiscernible modifications. Some politicking. :ninja:

 

It has been previously shared that XOM is profiting just fine right now and that it does not necessarily require it to diversify into commercial real estate even though XOM is heavily into real estate in the Houston area. It does seem to me that XOM is bankrupt when it comes to diversifying it image.



#88 renamerusk

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Posted 28 December 2015 - 09:09 PM

.....Publicly traded XOM, from what I can tell, appears to be making pretty good money investing in petroleum and natural gas and things like that and has not found it necessary to venture into commercial property speculation. Once we run out of oil, though, who knows?

 

Again, the XOM garage project just leaves me more dumbstruck than ever in lieu of this FWBP published story...it seems so counter to what is going on industry wide.

 

http://www.fortworth...b1ff219889.html

 

 

Then there is this which is too technical for me alone to interpret.  I hope that it can provide me with some understanding of the most vexing decision, IMO,  that was made in Downtown - XOM Landmark Block Project. The analysis that draws my attention is in the following study and begins on page 87. 

 

Note: The two alternative models are: I - 43 story skyscraper & II - 9 level parking garage.

The online document chooses to exclude that description during the preview of this book but the

detail comparison is presented the charts following the study's conclusions. :blink:

 

Second Century of the Skyscraper: Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat By Council on Tall Buildings & Urban

  begins on page 87 -

 

https://books.google...ciation&f=false

 

 

Disclaimer: Not sure that this will be clarifying, and so I apologize for posting it even though it is incomplete, but it is an attempt. :swg:






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