Smoke on the Water? Part 1: 10 Acres Ripe for the Picking

Turtle Creek v2

Where there’s smoke, there’s gonna be fire.  As Candy recently wrote, 2505 Turtle Creek is finally set to become the Limited Edition, the über-luxury high-rise by first-time (in Dallas) high-risers from Toronto Great Gulf.

But with 10-acres of smoldering land ready to ignite, the Limited Edition may be just the beginning for this tail-end of Turtle Creek.

Republic “Tower”

In November 2014, the old Republic Insurance building at 2727 Turtle Creek was purchased by Prescott Realty Group in a partnership with Long Beach, California moneymen PIMCO. Incorporated in February 2015, the venture is called Republic Tower Property Group LLC. The use of the word “Tower” forebodes something tall is in the works.

The 5.5-acre property has been in play for redevelopment since Trammel Crow owned the building for 10-months in 2004. Since then, the property has been tossed around — Prescott is the fourth owner in the past ten years. Crow sold to Austin-based “SCA 2727 Turtle Creek Ltd.” who held the property until 2009 when it was sold to Arlington-based “First Texas Homes” who sold to Prescott in November 2014.

Plans for the property haven’t been shared with me, but in 2014 Prescott had a rendering of one, 14-story proposal.  It’s less bulky that I’d have imagined and is a commercial retail/restaurant mix — not residential.  The retained parking structure and reuse of a portion of the skeleton of one of the existing building will offset costs.

But any ”tower” would block at least some western views for owners and guests in The Mansion Residences/Hotel as well as partially blocking northern views for Park Towers and city views for parts of The Plaza I and II. (The Plaza has already lost some westerly views with the newly opened 10-story Cantabria apartments. The lot, at Hood and Brown – “11/1017” on the map – was supposed to be a third tower in the Plaza development.) Sources say Rosewood is obviously very interested in the plans for the property and its impact on views (although to be fair, significant Mansion Hotel view-blocking was self-inflicted by the construction of the Mansion Residences on the hotel’s front lawn).

Flash:  I’ve been told that Prescott has sold their 6060 Central Expressway home office (as of this writing it’s not even recorded in DCAD).  I’ve no idea what this means (if anything), but there’s also a planned mixed-use development going in across the street and near the DART rail station. But that’s a whole other column …

Turtle Creek Gardens; Next to Go?

Sandwiched between the Limited Edition and 2727 Turtle Creek is Turtle Creek Gardens, an aging low-rise condo complex built in 1961 with 104 units sprawled across a substantial 4.68-acre lot. Several redevelopment deals have been floated over the years but so far nothing has stuck. Things may have changed recently with sources saying that the complex’s HOA rules have been amended to allow a simple majority to approve a sale of the complex.

Given the makeup of the ownership, a simple majority (53+ votes) shouldn’t be difficult for the right money. Of the 104 units, 48 are either second homes or investment/rental. The remaining 56 units being primary residences (36 are under-65-years old and 20 are 65+).

While the complex hasn’t changed hands yet, as I said in a recent column, an assumed high-rise would block eastern views for the as yet unbuilt Limited Edition (adding to current northern blockage from Rienzi Plaza). A high-rise here would also complete a curtain of high-rises severely shrouding Park Towers’ northwesterly views as well as cutting off The Plaza I & II from city views.

If both these parcels are developed into high-rises, the little enclave of eleven “significant” homes on the gated (and bridged and moated) Park Bridge Court may be in shadow six months of the year.

Tara

3505 Fairmount. What’s next?

Tara Be Gone

The white clapboard home at 3503 Fairmount across from the chi-chi Rienzi Plaza apartments has come down. The 15,337 square foot lot has been cleared by owners GG Dallas Pearl LP who acquired the lot in June 2014. GG Dallas Pearl lists their address as 2500 Cedar Springs Road. If that sounds familiar, it’s a Briggs Freemen office, but GG Dallas Pearl is actually incorporated in tax-haven Delaware. Their Delaware address is 160 Greentree Drive, Suite 101 in Dover. That exact address and suite is listed as the address for over 250 companies listing “National Registered Agents, Inc.” as the company’s registered agent.

I’m sure nothing untoward is going on here. Many companies have convoluted corporate structures – especially in Delaware – but it does make for some interesting head-scratching copy.

UPDATE:  Sources report that GG is Limited Edition developer Great Gulf which might mean the building’s name will be the Pearl.

GG Dallas Pearl Map

Anyway … now that the lot has been scraped, what’s it going to be? According to the City of Dallas, who gave approval, it’s to be a 55-unit residential structure not to exceed 165’ of habitable height (there’s another 10’ in allowable overages for mechanicals on the roof). My guess is what we have is a 15-story building with roughly four units per floor with two half-floor penthouses. Unlike the Poston property near the Renaissance that we’ll cover next week, no one objected to their zoning modifications to reduce setbacks. Reading the Planning Commission notes, it seems there will be a lot of glass (no surprise) with the ground level having 60% transparency.

As you can see from the map, there will be some impact to Limited Edition views, but with the high-rise Heritage Auctions building next to GG Dallas Pearl, that view was mostly toast already and might actually block a little of the multi-story parking lot view at the back. Some apartments in Rienzi may also be slightly impacted. We’ll just have to wait for the champagne reception and see.

Next week we’ll walk a few blocks away and see what else is happening on the Creek. Stay tuned, it’s a doozie!

Remember: Do you have an HOA story to tell? A little high-rise history? Realtors, want to feature a listing in need of renovation or one that’s complete with flying colors? How about hosting a Candy’s Dirt Staff Meeting? Shoot Jon an email. Marriage proposals accepted (as soon as they’re legal in Texas)! sharewithjon@candysdirt.com

One Comment

  • I have heard from a reliable source that Turtle Creek Gardens still requires a 75% vote to approve a sale… which could be part of why they haven’t done something prior to now. But I think the timing seems better now. Will be interesting to see what happens.