Example of seven-story building construction and density options

A.G. Spanos has released a second, more thorough economic analysis of the feasibility of redeveloping Pink Wall parcels within the confines of the Preston Road and Northwest Highway Area Plan (PRNHAP). Spanos has a contingent contract to redevelop the Diplomat condos within PD-15 and has financed both viability studies. While Spanos has obvious motives, any economic data supplied is certainly more than the economic nothingness contained within the $350,000 PRNHAP study. How the city adopted that Santa’s lap of a plan, containing no financial underpinnings, still astounds.

You’ll recall that in October 2017, my rough calculations exposed the then 10-month old PRNHAP as economically bogus. That was followed up in January 2018 by Spanos’ first report developed by architects Looney Ricks Kiss that backed-up my findings. Namely that the recommendations contained within the PRNHAP study’s “Zone 4” are not viable to build. This latest study offers more detailed and dire details for the PD-15 area (download here).

To be clear, “not economically viable” means that a condo unit would sell for more money as a condo than as developable land. To sell under those conditions would equate to owners taking a loss on their home. In many cases it’s good when land is worth some fraction of a structure. It helps with neighborhood stabilization, curbing gentrification, etc.

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Planned Development District 15

Planned Development District 15

Several sources have overheard that some of the “natives” are getting restless behind the Pink Wall. Specifically that the two neighboring condo buildings at 6307 and 6306 Diamond Head Circle (Royal Orleans and Diplomat) were seeking an agent to market the properties to developers.

One source said a developer (Providence, folks who brought us Preston Hollow Village) had made an offer of $110 per square foot for the Diplomat complex of 14 units sitting on 41,349 square feet of land ($4.55 million). It was rejected as being low-ball. For reference, it’s been rumored that an early Transwestern bid for its on again-off-again-on- again project on the corner was at least 1/3 more.

Tract 4, known as Royal Orleans, with Northwest Highway frontage, has 20-units on 43,994 square feet with underground parking. I am not aware of any bids on this parcel.

Of course, given its high-rise neighbors, Athena and Preston Tower, a developer may think 20-stories is possible. As of today, according to city planners, they’d be wrong … 18 stories wrong. (more…)