By Steve Brown
Real Estate Editor | Dallas Morning News
Developers are kicking off construction on $500 million mixed-use project in Richardson that will include hundreds of apartments, office towers and a hotel.
The development on North Central Expressway is right next door to the $1.5 billion CityLine project that has State Farm Insurance’s new campus.
The two projects are separated by DART’s commuter rail line and station at Bush Turnpike. They will be connected by new roads and walkways.
“We want the two developments to flow together seamlessly,” said Joe Altemore with BC Station Partners, which just bought the land. “It will look like one master developer planned the whole thing.
“We closed our 54-acre land purchase last week and are starting construction on all of our infrastructure,” Altemore said.
BC Station Partners has already sold two big blocks of land to developers.
Apartment builder Trammell Crow Residential will start construction next month of the first phase of a 1,250-unit rental community located just west of the DART station.
The first, 351-unit apartment block will be five stories with ground-floor retail and a parking garage.
“We wanted an urban look to the project” which was designed by Good Fulton & Farrell Architects, Altemore said. “Trammell Crow Residential is delivering the product we wanted for the site.”
Crow Residential is one of the Dallas-area’s busiest apartment builders with projects in Uptown, Oak Cliff, West Dallas and Oak Lawn.
Its new Alexan CityLine project in Richardson will include about 10,000 square feet of retail space.
The developer plans to begin a second phase to the apartments in about six months, said Crow Residential’s Steve Bancroft.
“Never in my career have I seen an opportunity to build a whole city like they are doing at CityLine,” Bancroft said. “We think we are very well positioned.”
BC Station Partners has also sold a development site at the northeast corner of North Central and Renner Road to Transwestern.
The Houston-based commercial real estate firm plans to construct a 450,000 square-foot office tower and a hotel on the property.
“The CityLine project is a game-changer for Richardson, and access to DART and the amenity base should draw further activity to the area,” said Transwestern managing director Steve Williamson.
BC Station Partners is keeping a high-rise office campus location at the corner of Central and Bush Turnpike for future construction.
“We feel like we have two of the premier office building sites in North Texas,” said development partner Jim Wills.
Based on zoning the developers received last year from the City of Richardson, more than 1.3 million square feet of office space can be built on the property. That’s almost as much space as State Farm Insurance is constructing next door.
Together the CityLine and BC Station projects represent the largest commercial real estate development underway in North Texas.
“We are so excited to have another major project planned for Richardson’s hottest development area,” Richardson Mayor Laura Maczka said in a statement. “Building on the massive CityLine project immediately to the east and the city’s far-sighted investment in multi-modal transportation, this sector of Richardson is quickly becoming one of North Texas’ most vibrant and significant employment and residential centers.”
More than 10,000 workers will be housed in office buildings at CityLine for State Farm and Raytheon Corp.
CityLine includes additional apartments, shops, restaurants and an Aloft Hotel.
BC Station Partners has been working on the entire development tract for more than five years. Two years ago it sold the 186 acres at Plano Road and Bush Turnpike to developer KDC to build CityLine.
Last week BC Station Partners bought its 54 acres from the W.W. Caruth Jr. Foundation which had owned the land for decades.
Todd Jones at Younger Partners brokered the land sale.
“It was originally a gravel pit and a dirt bike track,” said BC Station’s Sam Swanson. “We’ve spent a long time working with this property, and the project just keeps getting bigger and bigger.”
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