Perhaps commercial property owners will soon be paying their fair share of property taxes if this news from the Dallas Central Appraisal District is any indication.

Last June, I reported that HEB owned a block of Lemmon Avenue between Reagan and Throckmorton Streets that was to have been a new Central Market. Those plans shifted to a more ambitious project at Lemmon and McKinney Avenues. However, DCAD had already planned on the Reagan/Throckmorton block being developed and had gutted the block’s assessed values (as they routinely do prior to development).

Each of the four townhouses was valued at $1,000, while rating as “very good” or “excellent.” The land the four sat on was also not reflective of market rates. Net-net, each of the four had three years where they were valued at less than half their 2015 market rate. While you and I likely got walloped with large increases, multi-billion dollar HEB benefitted from DCAD’s shoddy benevolence.

It’s nice to know DCAD reads CandysDirt.com, because things changed for 2019’s proposed valuations.

In 2015, 3929 Bowser was valued at $331,220 before spending the next three years assessed at $141,950. The property’s 2019 proposed valuation is $427,140. For 3520 Throckmorton, 2019’s proposed valuation is $456,750. Neighboring 3516 Throckmorton sees a 2019 proposed valuation of $464,100. Rounding out the four townhouses, 3512 Throckmorton’s proposed 2019 value is $388,920.

Are even these valuations fair?

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popularDuring the holidays, we’ve been sharing our best stories of 2018. But as Director of Audience Engagement, I was curious — what stories were the most popular this year?  We took a look at the most popular stories based on comments and social media likes and shares. Have a favorite of your own? Share it in the comments!

January: The Lakewood Porch Pirate Nabbed

While we started covering this story during the holiday season in 2017 (in fact, we were the first news organization to bring you the story of the Lakewood Porch Pirate and the box of poop she stole), that coverage continued into 2018, when Kelli Russell was arrested. (more…)

Oak Lawn Committee

Conceptual Image

Tuesday night’s Oak Lawn Committee meeting was chockablock with five projects. The first peek will be of the proposed Central Market in the perennial unsuccessful supermarket location on McKinney between the Lemmon split. You may recall it as Albertsons or more recently Minyards. At first glance, this is pretty spanky and cool, but the devil is in the details.

It’s proposed to be a whopping big development. There would be a five-level podium covering 95 percent of the parcel that balances two 360’ towers on opposing corners. The larger of the two towers would be a 21-story office building while the other would be an as yet unspecified mix of office, hotel and/or multi-family.

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Beginning in 2014, Central Market parent HEB began snapping up parcels on the city block bounded by Lemmon and Bowser Avenues between Reagan and Throckmorton Streets. Their intent was to open a Central Market. That plan has been abandoned for what I last heard was a Central Market planned for the old Albertson’s location on Lemmon and McKinney Avenues.

The main reason the deal failed was zoning. The parcels facing Lemmon Avenue are zoned for commercial operations while the Bowser-facing lots were zoned for residential use. The Oak Lawn Committee told HEB there was no way they’d support a commercial encroachment into a residential area. I’m sure the fear was that if they’d said “yes” here, other Lemmon Avenue businesses would want to convert the residential backs of their blocks to commercial too. (more…)

HEB

Are we getting one of these or no? (Photo by Dave Stone/Flickr)

It all started with one neighbor in the Preston Hollow/Midway Hollow area excitedly telling others via social media that a cashier at Central Market told her that 100 percent, no doubt about it, the Sunfresh Market site on Northwest Highway and Midway Road that was one of the sites H-E-B (also the parent company of Central Market) picked up was absolutely going to be an H-E-B and that only one site Uptown would become a Central Market.

Alrighty then. I filed it on my list of things to look into on Monday and continued my weekend chores.

But then another neighbor posted an email she got from H-E-B corporate, asking for an update. The email – which was signed by the H-E-B/Central Market director of public affairs Mabrie Jackson – said, “While no announcement has been formally made regarding all of the real estate H-E-B/Central Market acquired from Sunfresh, I can tell you that you will be very pleased around the end of summer 2017.”

Well, butter my butt and call me a biscuit. This sounds intriguing. So I fired off my own inquiry to Jackson to see if I could confirm this and maybe get a few more details.

“I have no details finalized on all of the Sunfresh properties to share, but I can confirm that the properties purchased were being considered for our Central Market format only,” Jackson said. She also told me to check back after Thanksgiving.

So I guess those tea leaves are a little clearer?  If you combine both emails, the picture that emerges is that something is happening next summer, and that ain’t nobody getting an H-E-B (probably – I mean, that could be a bit of misdirection, I suppose, to keep things vague).  Stay tuned, I guess, for more exciting news after Thanksgiving.

 

H-E-B

DFW Internet was set ablaze yesterday after H-E-B announced the purchase of six Sun Fresh Market stores in the area. (Photo by Dave Stone/Flickr)

Monday afternoon, the Dallas-area Internet exploded: It wasn’t just a rumor, the long-desired H-E-B grocery store chain had bought up six Sunfresh Market sites — four in Dallas, one in Grapevine, and one in McKinney.

Interestingly enough, it seems like the drumbeat for expansion may have been happening even earlier than this, judging from this thread in Retail Watchers.

As neighborhood NextDoor pages and Facebook groups filled with the requisite 15 reposts of the same Dallas Morning News article, people began to express their joy at the possibility of the area finally getting the stores that are ubiquitous in Central and Southeast Texas, but not so much around here. They also began to guess about which it would be – Central Market, or H-E-B. (more…)