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Member Since 03 May 2004
Offline Last Active Aug 01 2014 11:27 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Villa DeLeon

29 November 2010 - 10:57 PM

It was a "gamble" in the making since 2006. Lincoln I was practically under contract, meaning that the neighborhood would have been predominately owned, not rented. However, we were 12 years into a 7 year cycle when the bottom fell out. VDL is actually leasing, and probably has the has the highest $ per foot lease rate in Tarrant County---hell, maybe Dallas County, too. Three new tenants in the last 30 days and two units in serious discussion to go under contract. Unfortunately, when dealing with a project with this type of lead time, the market conditions can (and DID) change dramatically. The key is staying power: can the developer (and IS the developer) willing to fund the negative cash flow to retain the project? Or, in today's market, the bigger question is whether the lender with the underlying note can stave off the Feds???

For example, in the case of Le Bijou, if it had tried to lease at completion, could the "friendly foreclosure" been avoided? Maybe, but today, that's 20-20 hindsight. The bank has sold a few, but sold at a price WAY below hard costs. Potentially, that could have been avoided with some tough decisions/discussions and belt-tightening. By contrast, VDL has some deep pockets behind it, and the balance of Trinity Bluff at play. You may think it was (IS) a mistake, but the developer rode out the last downfall of the Feds and came up smelling like a rose several years later. News at 12, 2012 that is.

In Topic: Villa DeLeon

01 April 2010 - 05:25 PM

Kevin, In Trinity Bluff, I think part of the reason it was done with lights and the trees on the opposite side of the sidewalk was due to street right of way. You may or may not recall that Samuels was significantly wider, and was "stoved down" using the parallel parking on either side to make the actual street smaller. The ROW for street, did not change, however. I think that is the reason the planting is located where it is. Additionally, the entire streetscape had to be coordinated and approved by the city, as well as the city council, because some of the pedestrian improvements were eligible for a NTCOG grant. FYI.

In Topic: TCC coming to Downtown

01 April 2010 - 05:08 PM

What irks me the most is the amount paid to the consultants who knew, or should have known about the necessity of the 404 permit WAY IN ADVANCE. If you go to the district wide tab, you'll see that TPG-Parsons has been paid FOURTEEN MILLION dollars just in consulting fees...and that doesn't count Bing Thom, GideonToal or heaven know who else's fees for the downtown campus. If any of us made a huge mistake in our jobs that cost our employers millions in cost overruns, we would be summarily dismissed. Higher ed is supposed to be about competency, not the lack thereof.

In Topic: DT: Joe Daiches Jewelers Building

01 April 2010 - 04:35 PM

Not to burst the bubble, but it is not in such great shape---especially the third floor. Apparently, at some time in the building's history, it operated as a brothel. The story goes that the Madame and a suitor used to argue loudly and the suitor was thrown out. Enraged, she torched the place. Damage on the third floor makes it pretty dangerous on that floor. Second floor is in much better shape, with many details well preserved, and yes, I think it would make great office space.

I applalud the concept and hope they can make it work, but to bring it to code will be very, very expensive. Besides ADA, their are fundamental issues like vertical clearance in the stairwell. Perhaps the stairs can be dismantled and moved intact, but the dollars will add up quickly.

Hopefully, they can make a deal with Jerry Loftin for parking (lot to the south), as the other major flaw is that is has no parking of its own. Great idea, I hope to see it come to fruition.

In Topic: How's One City Place coming along?

11 February 2010 - 04:13 PM

I heard Porter say he was undecided, and the market would make the decision---when the time is right, and what to build. I think his economic development agreement with the city was based on dollars invested, not what type of construction, but I am not 100% positive about that.