Trammell Crow, MetLife Ride Dallas’ Tight Office-Market Wave

In order to take advantage of Dallas' tight office market due to expansion of major companies, Trammell Crow Co. and MetLife Inc. have teamed up to build a mixed-use project.

 By Scott Baltic, Contributing Editor TRAMMELL

A joint venture of Trammell Crow Co. and MetLife Inc. will build a 916,000-square-foot Class A mixed-use project, called Park District, in Dallas’ Uptown submarket, Trammell Crow announced Wednesday.

Sited on a 3-acre parcel between Pearl Street, Olive Street and Klyde Warren Park, Park District is being designed by HKS Architects, of Dallas, and will include a 19-story, 502,000-square-foot office building, the Park District Tower, and a 32-story, approximately 255-unit residential tower, The Residences at Park District.

A Trammell Crow spokesperson clarified that the residential tower will be rental apartments, but was unable to provide additional information about the project as a whole.

The 5.2-acre Klyde Warren Park was built atop the Woodall Rodgers Freeway and opened in 2012.  In October, the Urban Land Institute honored the park with its 2014 Urban Open Space Award.

Both the office tower, on Pearl Street, and the apartment tower, on Olive Street, will feature ground-level retail, 9,000 square feet and 13,000 square feet, respectively.

The apartment tower will be developed by Trammell Crow’s residential subsidiary, High Street Residential. Tenants will have access to an amenity deck with a pool overlooking the park, a fitness center, and valet and concierge services.

Extensive below-grade parking and a plaza designed by The Office of James Burnett, the landscape architecture firm that designed Klyde Warren Park, will round out the project. Construction is expected to begin later this year.

“Park District will be a one-of-a kind project that will further connect the Arts District, Downtown and Uptown, providing tenants, residents and the public a unique way to experience Klyde Warren Park and the city,” Scott Krikorian, senior managing director with Trammell Crow’s Dallas-Fort Worth Business Unit, said in a release.

“This project began almost 10 years ago when we bought a small well-located parcel of land in Uptown,” Kurt Day, director and regional head of real estate in MetLife’s Dallas office, added. “Uptown’s evolution and the effects of Klyde Warren Park over the last few years have been exciting, and we think Park District will raise the bar to the benefit of Uptown residents and workers.”

The development team reportedly will seek LEED Gold and Silver certification for the office and residential buildings, respectively.

CBRE Dallas has been appointed the leasing agent for the office and retail space.

Klyde Warren Park has been “one of the biggest game-changers the city has seen in many years” and has created a “greater downtown” by making Uptown (with its 10 million square feet of office space) walkable to downtown’s 30 million square feet, Phil Puckett, executive vice president with CBRE, told Commercial Property Executive. Along the way, Uptown has seen office rents rise by 40 to 60 percent off a vacancy rate slightly under 10 percent, he added.

On the residential side, Uptown has become “the hip live/work/play area,” Puckett said, popular with both Millennials and empty-nesters, such that Uptown residential is currently about 95 percent occupied overall.

The office market in the DFW Metroplex will continue to tighten, predominantly through the relocation or expansion of major companies such as State Farm, Raytheon, Tenet Healthcare and Santander Consumer USA, according to a third-quarter report from Marcus & Millichap.

Tightening is needed, as Class A office vacancy in Dallas averaged 20.1 percent in the second quarter, an improvement of 30 basis points over the previous 12 months.