CoStar Features Arlington Commons Transaction

FEBRUARY 06, 2019|CRAIG DONAHUE

New York Investment Firm Buys Arlington Commons

A New York-based investment firm purchased a 353-unit apartment complex in Arlington, Texas, dubbed Arlington Commons, for an undisclosed price.

The Praedium Group acquired the complex from The Nehemiah Co., which developed Arlington Commons. Nehemiah broke ground on property in 2016 and completed construction this past year.

Located at 425 E. Lamar Blvd., the mid-rise complex consists of a four-story building with an attached parking garage. Arlington Commons offers a mix of one- and two-bedroom floorplans, ranging in size from 580 to 1,418 square feet.

“The acquisition of this property fits well within our strategy of purchasing quality assets in growth markets,” Peter Calatozzo, managing director at The Praedium Group, said in a statement. “The Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex continues to experience substantial population growth and strong employment gains, which have been and continue to be facilitated by a significant number of corporate relocations and expansions within the MSA.”

Bob Helterbran and Lew Wood of Younger Partners Dallas LLC brokered the deal on behalf of the seller.

YP’s Jack Gail in CoStar’s Opportunity Zones Article

FEBRUARY 05, 2019|MARK HESCHMEYER

Big Money Enters Race for Opportunity Zone Investments

Private Equity, Institutional Funds Are Likely to Drive Property Pricing, Market Selection

Markets with the most opportunity zones, such as Chicago, are areas that are likely to be on the receiving end of a substantial amount of new investment. Image: Lisa Blue

Markets with the most opportunity zones, such as Chicago, are areas that are likely to be on the receiving end of a substantial amount of new investment. Image: Lisa Blue

Large institutional and private equity funds are beginning to stream into the unseasoned strategy of investing in federally designated low-income zones where every new dollar spent on development or redevelopment could be eligible for tax breaks.

With the entrance of these funds, the nature of capital raising and the target markets where the funds will invest could change dramatically.

The Opportunity Zone program was created under a provision of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 to encourage private capital investments in underfunded communities. Under the law, anyone owing capital gains taxes can start a qualified opportunity fund by self-certifying with the Internal Revenue Service. Until this year, the bulk of the money being raised for opportunity zone investments was coming from smaller funds targeting one deal in one market.

CoStar Group is keeping a running list of qualified real estate opportunity funds. Of the more than 230 funds on the list, more than half average a target capital raising of less than $30 million. Most of these were launched early last year when the provision in the tax law first took effect.

This year, though, has seen new funds launched by major players such as CIM Group, Bridge Investment Group Partners, The Bernstein Cos. and Starwood Capital Group. The four firms are seeking to raise a combined $7 billion, the equivalent of 233 funds trying to raise $30 million each.

“We are seeing opportunity zones restructure the traditional capital stack being deployed in emerging neighborhoods, which has largely been serviced by local and regional investors,” said Jaime Sturgis, chief executive of Native Realty in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. “Institutional capital, which historically only chased ‘Main & Main’ credit deals has been enticed by the tax savings to venture into less developed emerging neighborhoods. This introduction of institutional capital into these under-capitalized neighborhoods is going to dramatically accelerate the gentrification of these neighborhoods as the opportunity zones require substantial capital investments to the real property to qualify for the tax exceptions.”

Starwood Capital Group, a global private investment firm focused on real estate and energy investments, this month launched Starwood Opportunity Zone Partners I to raise $500 million. Starwood Capital currently has 58 properties located in opportunity zones.

It hired Anthony Balestrieri as a senior vice president to lead the business. Balestrieri joins Starwood from MetLife Real Estate Investors, where he most recently served as director and head of acquisitions in Washington, D.C.

Starwood Capital will focus its opportunity zone strategy on markets in regions where the firm has developed a strong real estate presence, including the West Coast, Southeast and large metropolitan markets such as New York City and Washington, D.C.

Time Pressure

Jack Gail, an associate with Younger Partners, a full-service boutique commercial real estate firm in Dallas, sees potential issues for some of the larger companies and private equity funds that are raising enormous amounts of capital.

“The potential problem with raising, say, a $500 million qualified opportunity fund is that based on the current guidelines, that money needs to be deployed,” Gail said. “For lack of a better term, there is a ‘shot clock’ on the fund, and its capital needs to be invested in a timely manner or the entire fund could face penalties and potentially lose the tax incentives all together.”

That means opportunity funds do not have the luxury of time to store up dry powder to spend at some future point. It has to be deployed and deployed fairly quickly.

“At the end of the day, yes, raising a few hundred million dollars is an enormous accomplishment but they will have to find quality deals that makes sense for their investors long term,” Gail said. “And that part is not as easy as you might think. The designated opportunity zones were selected for a reason — they are the more impoverished areas in our country.”

Bridge Investment Group in Salt Lake City this month launched a $1 billion qualified opportunity zone fund after announcing the beginning of the effort this past October. Bridge is targeting development and redevelopment projects to invest in alongside high-quality development partners.

“Our acquisition team has already identified over $500 million of attractive opportunities that are expected to provide meaningful impact on the districts in which capital is invested,” said Jonathan Slager, co-chief executive of Bridge Investment Group, in a statement announcing the initiative.

Over the past decade, Bridge has invested more than $12 billion of equity across its apartment, office and seniors living platforms. Given that not all opportunity zones are created equal, Bridge is leveraging its national footprint and local market knowledge to focus on zones at an inflection point or located inside of or within close proximity to high growth markets.

Michael Walker and Lane Beene are partners in a more typically sized opportunity fund, the $50 million Pilot And Legacy Opportunity Fund. The fund’s objective is to build workforce housing/apartments in opportunity zone locations in Texas.

Apartment Demand

It is choosing locations that project both job and population growth, and where a need exists for affordable, energy-efficient apartments.

“The reality is that while many taxpayers have heard about opportunity zones and opportunity funds, the majority do not yet know enough to take action,” Walker said. “So while there are many quality investors and private equity firms entering the fund arena every week, I believe this helps to bring legitimacy to socially responsible investing in distressed communities.”

Fund partner Beene added, that “the opportunity zone fundraising will niche down the investor profile and emancipate capital for new investment. We see the primary opportunity zone investor as a more seasoned investor with established funds interested in capital preservation.”

With more seasoned investors coming into the space, comes more competition for deals.

“One additional impact of opportunity zones is increased competition for sites with strong investment fundamentals,” Beene added. “Many opportunity zone locations are difficult investment scenarios with poor financial appeal and decades of negative momentum. The few opportunity zone sites with stronger investment fundamentals will be pursued in high demand. I anticipate a price premium for opportunity zone locations in attractive areas as more investors learn about the advantages.”

For Roland Pott, broker of record for New Jersey at Slatehouse Group Property Management, that means increased uncertainty for what happens in markets in which he works.

“I do a lot of work in Trenton, New Jersey, and we have a concentration of opportunity zones. Because it is not a major market city, I think that our zones here will be slower to receive the influx of capital, whereas opportunity zone neighborhoods in larger cities will be more primed to receive capital more quickly.”

Still the coming wave of big institutional money into opportunity zones could mean an extension of the already long-running recovery, according to Matthew Honnold, an economic analyst with Wells Fargo Securities.

The new opportunity zone initiative comes at a time when overall property prices have begun to ease, especially in major gateway markets. Outside of Puerto Rico, the markets with the most opportunity zones are located within New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Houston, areas that will likely be on the receiving end of a substantial amount of new investment, Honnold’s group reported.

“The net effect of these provisions will likely be to draw significantly more capital into the industry in 2019, which will further support property valuations and restrain cap rates, even as interest rates increase,” the company reported.

An Evening of Winners: NTCAR 2018 Stemmons Service Award Event

Congrats to Younger Partners Co-Founder Kathy Permenter on her NTCAR Stemmons Service Award nomination. We are so incredibly proud of her achievements both professionally and within the community she serves. She was nominated along with Venture’s Mike Geisler, Fischer & Co’s Sharon Friedberg & Citadel Partners’ Scott Morse. Congratulations to the 2018 winner, Scott Morse. Here’s a wrap up of the Younger Partners team at the event at the Dallas Country Club.

Younger Partners Brokers Sale of Arlington Commons

Younger Partners rang in the New Year by brokering the sale of Arlington Commons — Arlington’s first market-rate Class-A multifamily development (outside of student housing) — for an undisclosed price. The public-private partnership has been almost a decade in the making and is already achieving goals set by City of Arlington leadership, neighborhood groups and developer, The Nehemiah Company.

In 2018, Arlington-based The Nehemiah Company completed the 353-unit first phase of Arlington Commons at 425 E. Lamar Blvd. It was sold to New York City-based national real estate investment firm, Praedium Group. Younger Partners’ Bob Helterbran and Lew Wood negotiated the sale.

“The city and community worked for years to encourage a developer to step up in this area with redevelopment. No developer was willing to take the risk. We live here and believed strongly in Arlington and this submarket,” says The Nehemiah Company President and Partner Robert Kembel.

“It is good for Arlington and our company to demonstrate that Class-A housing works so well in Arlington. We are grateful to the City Council and Tarrant County Commissioners for giving us the tools to make this successful for all of the stakeholders in the region.”

Around the mid-2000s, Arlington City Council saw an opportunity to replace three aging apartment complexes on Lamar Boulevard, with high-quality housing and a goal of increasing the city’s property tax base while spurring additional investment. To achieve the goal, city leaders were willing to provide economic development incentives to the developer and allow higher density units to get the most bang for the buck. Unfortunately, there were no developers willing to take the risk, so city leaders approached the Nehemiah Company to find a solution.Arlington Commons

“With our success with the Viridian housing development along some hard-to-develop land in North Arlington, former Mayor Bob Cluck and the council approached us to consider a redevelopment effort within the Lamar/Collins overlay,” Kembel says. “The assessed valuation of the target properties was $10 million before demolition. After the first phase of Arlington Commons, the property is valued at $40 million and by build-out, we anticipate the value to reach $200 million or higher. We are proud that the project has received unanimous support from the Arlington City Council and a ‘thumbs-up’ from neighborhood groups, the school district, and other stakeholders.”

Prior to this redevelopment, property values were declining in the area; now they’re on the rise with the creation of this pedestrian-friendly project, Kembel says. The traffic study supported a more pedestrian friendly street section allowing for a new linear park in the median adjacent to the project. These types of trails and parks are significant quality of life additions expected today by young professionals.

“Without Younger Partners, this project wouldn’t have happened and have the success it has experienced,” Kembel says. “Early on, Younger Partners was working to assemble this land. We were having difficulty locating owners and convincing them to sell to us. Younger Partners stepped in and made it happen.” 

Arlington Commons consists of a four-story elevatored building with an attached structured parking garage, 10- to 12-foot ceilings, and views of the adjacent Rolling Hills Country Club golf course, Downtown Fort Worth, and Downtown Dallas. The property’s unit mix consists of one- and two- bedroom homes ranging from 580 to 1,418 square feet. Unit interiors feature granite or quartz countertops, stainless steel appliances, undermount sinks, designer backsplashes, chrome finishes, electronic door entry, vinyl plank wood flooring, custom track lighting, full size washer/dryers, and balconies or patios. Community amenities include a swimming pool, resident lounge and business center within the clubhouse, wellness center with fitness on demand, valet trash, dog park with dog wash station, electronic parcel lockers, and a lounge deck with barbecue grills.

“Arlington has had a dearth of multifamily deliveries. Excluding student housing, only two new market rent projects other than Arlington Commons have been built since 2004 and no new projects are under construction,” says Helterbran, one of the brokers on the deal. “Arlington 

Commons continues to outperform the surrounding multifamily market because of its top-of-class location, quality construction and lack of supply for a demographic group that demands excellence. Leasing velocity continues to accelerate without any rental concessions, confirming the depth of this target market.”

The multifamily complex is 85 percent occupied with approximately 65 percent made up of young professionals, he says. 

Helterbran says The Nehemiah Company’s multifamily expertise and historical track record with the City of Arlington and Tarrant County, coupled with the city’s commitment to the revitalization of the Lamar/Collins area of North Arlington, led to the private-public partnership for the development of the property and streetscape improvements along East Lamar Boulevard. 

Arlington Commons is centrally located within the Dallas-Fort Worth MSA and roughly equidistant from the major employment centers in both downtown Dallas and downtown Fort Worth. The property provides great accessibility and connectivity throughout the Metroplex, as it is proximate to I-30, SH-360, and SH-161, and sits only 12 miles south of the DFW airport.

North Arlington is proximate to both a growing employment base and an expanding entertainment district. The property benefits from close proximity to a diverse employment base such as GM Financial, D.R. Horton, General Motors, the Great Southwest Industrial District, the University of Texas-Arlington, Texas Health Resources, the Centreport Business Park, American Airlines Group, and UPS.  In addition, the property is located less than four miles from Arlington’s Entertainment District, which includes AT&T Stadium (home to the Dallas Cowboys), Globe Life Park/Globe Life Field (home to the Texas Rangers), Texas Live!, and Six Flags Over Texas/Hurricane Harbor.

2018 North Texas Land Absorption Report

By Robert Grunnah

For many years, our Investments/Land Division, formerly Novus Realty Advisors, now a division of Younger Partners, has produced a report designed to assist investors in deciding the viability of acquiring undeveloped land for medium and long-term positive returns. Since our 2017 report was distributed, DFW has experienced continued active growth in virtually every commercial and residential product type. As the accompanying exhibits indicate, transaction volume held steady for both user and investment product. Much remains the same in our report this year, except we are seeing legitimate evolving trends that should be acknowledged. Absorption of developed, undeveloped (land with limited or no access to infrastructure permitting immediate use), and underutilized land activity traded at a comparable rate to 2017. The trend continues as
aggressive, new vertical development has left even fewer desirable infill sites remaining available. More peripheral sites are seeing increasing activity with employers competing for employees desiring a shorter commuting distance. This competition for employees, inflated raw
land and construction costs, a rapidly increasing cost of living, and transportation congestion are all beginning to affect our extended growth cycle. However, we remain attractive to geographical relocations when compared to our competition. With the anticipated continued job growth,
inbound population increases, relatively low interest rates, and a sound local economy, there is no reason for an immediate corrective cycle. Should any one of those benchmarks collapse or even display a solid weakness, a correction is imminent.

While we have retained historically low capitalization rates, despite sale prices at a multiple of replacement cost and static retail demand, income producing investments have maintained their active volume due largely to the need to invest 1031 trade equity and the lack of competition with alternative investments. Excessive competition to acquire cash flow assets providing even the smallest yields produces increased vulnerability to market corrections. A cyclical downturn in the national economy would have a dour negative impact and threaten positive cash flows. Inherently, land investment differs greatly from other types of real estate products generally because of its inability to produce interim cash flow and its considerably more sensitive vulnerability to recurring cycles. The criteria used to determine potential land opportunities, while becoming more sophisticated over the last two cycles, remains principally in implementing basic strategies. Perhaps the most important of these is the ability to project and fund ownership long term. Positive liquidity, the allowed ability to sell for an acceptable profit at the optimum market time, can be highly speculative. When an investor is placed in an imposed forced sale position or loses confidence in the future of the investment, returns are jeopardized and most frequently result in a significant loss. 

With expanding IT capabilities and the proliferation of social media vehicles, should an investor wish to search hard enough, she can find support for any speculative investment philosophy, positive or negative, to justify an action. This presentation qualifies as but one of many. However, certain facts remain more pertinent than most as they may apply to investments in unimproved or underutilized land assets in DFW. Again, referring to the accompanying charts, a conservative estimate of pending ten-year population growth for DFW is one million plus new residents. Climate, central location, progressive state and local government, and no personal or corporate income tax would support this projection. Possessing no true natural barriers for continued land absorption, there appears to be no single real estate oriented obstacle to limit this projection. Population growth can be fueled both organically and by external inbound relocations. With trailing twelve-month growth of 120,000 jobs, the majority of the population increase stems from such relocations. It is estimated that only eighty percent of the jobs created by recent moves into DFW have been filled. In the last six years, over thirty-five thousand acres of land have traded with an additional large number not being included when classified as long-term investment land.

Like most types of investments, real estate is cyclical. Investment success or failure can often solely depend on where the cycle is at the time the purchase is made in conjunction with the investor’s ability to determine the true state of the cycle. Buying at various points in a cycle, cost averaging, can provide some security allowing for both buying selling to generate positive results. There has yet to be a final cycle. The ability to hold long term may negatively impact the final yield, but does offer security. While the ability to use historical data to project long term value is logical, many down cycles have been created by artificial, non-real estate related influences that were difficult to anticipate. For example, in the late 1980’s, tax law changes and deregulation destroyed the market. In the late 2000’s, the subprime collapse did the same. It is reasonable to assume there will be more fragile “bubbles”. Included in our report is our Land Absorption Map which sets out various types of 2018 commercial real estate activity in specific geographic areas. Actual sales, current listings and announcements of pending projects are the basic criteria used and have been benchmarked annually to complete the current year’s map. Not difficult to understand, the progression from active to long term generally follows the current availability of infrastructure and newer, expanding city services. Land currently available for vertical construction will bring significantly higher values and greater activity over those that must physically wait for services. Over the twenty plus year’s of presenting the map, it is interesting to note that, while the circles have limited movement, the colors have many changes and generally move out from the core in concentric circles. An ever-increasing burden to investors and developers is the dramatic involvement of politically motivated, impractical restrictions imposed on reasonable growth by many local municipalities. Frequently, viable, beneficial projects are excluded from fruition by flawed, unrelated personal or political interests. Younger Partners is a member of the highly respected North Texas Land Council (NTLC), a group comprised of 50 of the most active and talented land brokers in our area. Believing that activity generates more activity, the North Texas Land Council freely shares information with its competing members, and the market in general, on a level of professionalism unusual within similar organizations and, as such, is a benefit to all clients. Much of the projected activity displayed on the Younger Land Absorption Map (YLAM) reflects the activities of the NTLC.

The market today continues to see record prices for infill, readily developable sites possessing available infrastructure, permitted anticipated uses, and demand for completed product. However, distinct indications of this aggressive approach are beginning to surface perhaps harboring at a minimum at least a cooling off period, or perhaps the “correction” we have anticipated the last few years. As it relates to land, pricing levels may have achieved their pinnacle for this long evolving cycle. For many increased cost factors, single family new home prices have increased fifty percent in five years making affordability more difficult. Less obvious are completed per square foot costs in all commercial sectors. The strong national economy, as well as local, and the continued relocations have provided record employment and income. That momentum will carry through at least the first half of 2019. Past that, projections are difficult. DFW is well positioned to absorb a moderate abated market. Land prices, however, must readjust for the return of an active market.

Again, as last year, the “pipeline” for new projects of all types has gotten understandably smaller which presents an interesting speculative projection for 2020 and beyond. Increased activity for pure, longer term investment sites has continued the extension to the outer lying, concentric circle tracts, considered “pure investment tracts”. Until 2016 such tracts remained fairly benign in sales activity and price fluctuation. These specific investments are becoming more attractive since competing investments such as oil and gas (price fluctuation and over production), a pending bear stock and bond market (the same non-occurring “pending” from last year), and the tech world which offer much higher risk vehicles. Additionally, local investors (the heretofore most active group of land speculators) are seeing increased competition from more patient national and foreign investors. Yet, historically, and perhaps ironically, a large number of the most successful, wealthiest investors have made their patient fortunes in land by simply applying these basic techniques.

Our continuing and extended analysis, as displayed on the “Younger Land Absorption Map” (revised November 2018) is principally based on extensive historical data collected utilizing over 150 years of market experience possessed by Younger associates, members of the NTLC, and reliable future projections from sources that have traditionally displayed accurate demographic information. Our attached graphs were constructed by Steve Triolet, Director of Younger Research. Depending on which source one chooses to use, the DFW market still expects to absorb an additional population expansion of twenty five to thirty percent over the next fifteen years. Success in real estate investment will be to determine where that growth will locate. History has taught us that product will be made available and priced based on pure economics. The cost to provide available product to meet demand will depend on the availability of affordable infrastructure (sewer, water, roads, proximity to employment centers, service commercial, schools, political climate, etc.). Land prices will fluctuate according to such availability, absorption, the national economy, and the popularity of any specific product. Investing in the right opportunities will generate exceptional rewards. Some estimate that it requires approximately 12,000 to 15,000 acres of raw land to accommodate one million people in a reasonably confined, socially acceptable, service provided environment. DFW enjoyed record rainfall in 2018 keeping our resources at sustainable levels. Given the droughts of previous years, with the population growth that has occurred, a dry year will present some worrisome challenges only new sources can cure. A partial answer lies in the creation of two new reservoirs in East Texas, probably ten years from service. Lack of both potable and irrigation water access will be an inevitable liability. We have been fortunate to have had an extended period of prodigious activity which can at least be partially credited to our aggressive political structure, both local and state, our sophisticated and informed developers and engineers, and our incredibly competent and equally aggressive local and regional Economic Development Corporations. Of equal depth, however, is the dynamic, well educated, hard working, and professional “under 40” group of brokers, administrators, managers, and general employment base whom have emerged during this cycle. They may well be the first group exiting a positive cycle who have learned and benefited from the experience of their predecessors. They may not need a disaster to stay relevant and solvent. In conclusion, the principals of successful, sophisticated investment must utilize basic criteria, some of which is outlined above. Access to infrastructure, most importantly water, the admirable, continued effort by our current Dallas Mayor to utilize available land in our southern corridor, absorption of the remaining few infill sites, high suburban infill land costs, and the migration of employment centers will all play significant roles in prudent investment decisions. Utilized in the investment process, the only remaining elements are sound financial strength and patience.

YP Runners Take on BMW Dallas Marathon

Congrats to YP’s Tyler Hemenway, Tanja McAleavey and Autumn Stallings for their participation in the BMW Dallas Marathon. This was Autumn’s sixth year to participate in the BMW Dallas Marathon and her first year to run the Ultra with a time of 7:26:47. Tanja and Tyler both ran in the half-marathon. Tanja finished 20th out of 3,114 women and fifth in her age group. Tyler finished seventh overall with a time of 1:12:14.

The BMW Dallas Marathon Charity Program brings together various local charities in Dallas and national non-profit entities that partner with the BMW Dallas Marathon organization to raise funds in support of various causes. Charity Program partners play a vital role in supporting the success of the BMW Dallas Marathon and related events by providing both runners and volunteers. Among the charities supported are: Muscular Dystrophy Association Team Momentum, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Team In Training, Back On My Feet, The Tom Joyner Foundation, and For The Love of the Lake

BMW Dallas Marathon info.

Younger Partners Brings Cheer to Kids in Need

Younger Partners is helping spread some holiday cheer! Team members collected toys, makeup kits and bicycles for Community Partners of Dallas, whose mission is to ensure safety, restore dignity & inspire hope for abused & neglected children served by Dallas County Child Protective Services. We hope these gifts fulfill every child’s holiday wishes. #NoChildForgotten #TogetherWeGive

Here’s the team going to pick up the bikes. Here’s more info on the toy drive.

Move Over Co-Working; Financial Industry is the Real Powerhouse

By Steve Triolet, Younger Partners Research Director

While co-working companies have dominated much of the headlines as far expansion in DFW, the financial industry (which includes insurance companies) have been taking down more office space in 2018. Companies like Allstate Insurance, Mr Cooper (formerly Nationstar Mortgage), New York Life and others have contributed to the majority of positive net absorption over recent quarters. On the opposite end, technology companies been very active as far as leasing activity but have been responsible for overall negative net absorption.  

Much like we saw law firms squeezing more attorneys into less space over recent years, a similar trend has been impacting the technology industry, with tech companies downsizing their real estate footprints. NTT Data, Nokia, NetScout and other technology related companies have been moving into newer space and shedding excess square feet in older properties in the process.  The attached chart shows the industry clusters and whether in aggregate they have been expanding or contracting in the DFW office market.

WFAA Features Park Central 3 & 4 Security Guard

Great example of the quality tenant service at Park Central 3 & 4 as featured on WFAA. They featured one of the great security guards on site who sets out to remember a building of names. See the news clip here.  Younger Partners handles the leasing for the property.

Security guard sets out to remember a building of names

If it’s your second day on the job and security is already calling you up by name, you probably made the wrong impression.

If it’s your second day on the job and security is already calling you up by name, you probably made the wrong impression.

But inside one office tower in North Dallas, if the security guard doesn’t know your name, it’s just because he hasn’t met you yet.

“Good morning,” proclaimed Tim Esters, as he welcomed employees by name.

Tim has been guarding the front door in this building for the past three years. No one gets buy without a proper greeting.

“A smile is contagious,” said Tim.

At first, the proper greeting simply missed saying hello. Until, one day, someone responded, ‘Same to you, Tim.’

“If you call me by my name, I’d like to address you by your name,” Tim said.

And so began Tim’s mission to learn and remember as many names in the building as possible. Which, with 21 floors, seemed quite impossible.

“I know a few people from every floor,” he said.

Actually, the total number is much closer to a few thousand.

“I’m being kinda modest I guess,” Tim admitted with a laugh.

Of the nearly 3,000 people who walk through the door Tim knows more than 2,000 of them by name.

Tim says he only needs to hear your name once and he won’t forget it.

He claims there’s no secret to remembering 2,000 names. He’s only exclamation is that he simply loves people.

“Yep. Just like my family,” he said.

It’s obviously a very thoughtful thing to do, but folks hearsay Tim there’s a lot more than just remember their name.

“He makes you feel important,” said one employee.

“He makes you feel known and appreciated,” said another employee.

In America, we dislike each other because of politics or religion. But if Tim Esters shows us anything it’s that we have an ability to love one another even more.

“As a man told me a long time ago, it’s just nice to be nice. That’s just me. It’s just inside of me, to be nice to people.”

Trio of Younger Partners Leaders Featured in DBJ Report on Abundance of Development Sites

North Texas boasts bounty of big corporate campus sites

By Bill Hethcock  – Staff Writer, Dallas Business Journal

If nothing else, the push to lure Amazon’s second headquarters shows there’s an abundance of real estate options in North Texas for the world’s biggest companies seeking to relocate or expand.

The Dallas Fort Worth region has capitalized on its low cost to do business, central location within the United States, and relative abundance of skilled workers to bring in corporate relocations on a regular basis — Toyota, FedEx, Liberty Mutual and State Farm to name a few. Texas is a right-to-work state, with no corporate or individual income tax and one of the lowest tax burdens in the country, and North Texas has plenty of potential headquarters and corporate campus sites, making the region one of the top destinations in the world for relocating or expanding companies.

North Texas now is trying to land Amazon’s second headquarters, or HQ2, and the 50,000 jobs expected to come with the $5 billion mega-project. Twenty North American metro areas are competing for the project. The Washington Post reported this morning that the e-commerce giant has held advanced discussions about establishing its second headquarters in Virginia’s Crystal City.

Dallas-Fort Worth officials have pitched more than 30 potential sites capable of accommodating the 8 million square feet of office space Amazon plans to occupy. The e-commerce giant’s campus is expected to span across 100 acres.

In the four primary DFW counties — Dallas, Denton, Collin and Tarrant — there are more than 50 separate sites currently being marketed for large corporate users, said Steve Triolet, research director at Dallas-based commercial real estate firm Younger Partners. Those sites can accommodate a minimum of 250,000 square feet of office space and in many cases, millions of square feet more.

Another analysis compiled by real estate firm JLL showed more than 600 land tracts in DFW that are over 100 acres and are intended for commercial development.

While that list captures a large share of the options, the DFW market is so expansive that it doesn’t catch everything, said Walt Bialas, JLL vice president and director of research in Dallas. For example, it does not include infill tracts such as Dallas Midtown, which is the site of the old Valley View Mall, a 100-plus acre piece of land that is prime for redevelopment, Bialas said.

“Our area has significant tracts scattered everywhere,” Bialas said. “DFW has grown over the decades (by) pushing out its perimeter.”

The abundance of sites across DFW is a plus for companies in search of a new home because it allows them to choose from a variety of quality locations and pick the site that fits their corporate values and needs, said Dan Bowman, executive director and CEO of the Allen Economic Development Corp.

“Corporations win when there are many quality sites to choose from,” Bowman said. “DFW and Collin County not only have many development sites, but they are differentiated and strategically located. These kind of choices create value for relocations.”

In Allen, for example, the focus has been on creating significant green space in developments like Watters Creek, The Strand and Monarch City, Bowman said. Walkability, trails, green space and a quality family environment set Allen apart as a corporate location, he said.

“North Texas has many available shovel-ready sites for corporate relocations, but what makes us unique is the differences among those sites,” Bowman said. “Various Collin County sites offer access to unique labor pools, different transportation corridors, school districts, etc.”

The multitude of cities in the DFW area means the competition is fierce between cities, EDCs, developers and commercial real estate brokers vying for projects. North Texas has 14 cities with a population of over 100,000, and 71 cities with 10,000 people or more.

“I think that having more options is always good when you are a buyer,” said Moody Younger, co-founder of Younger Partners. “The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex has more potential sites than most areas because of available land and also because we have many more proven developers than most markets.”

The Dallas Regional Chamber also believes that having plenty of options for companies to consider is one of North Texas’ strengths, said Darren Grubb, a spokesman for the organization.

“Our role at the Dallas Regional Chamber is to help companies, site consultants, brokers or developers navigate our region and understand all aspects of what we offer as a market,” he said. “That optionality of sites, and also our distinct communities, allows us to tailor project responses based on what they are trying to achieve – or present them with a possibility they had not considered.”

The number of potential sites and cities made it challenging for the regional chamber to compile DFW’s bid for Amazon’s second headquarters, said Mike Rosa, senior vice president of Economic Development for the DRC.

“You’re going to submit one bid, as requested by the company, for an area of 7.5 million people and all the powerful communities that we have,” he said. “This is not one large city with a lot of tiny burgs that surround it. We have 14 cities in this region with more than 100,000 people and their own ideas about their destiny and who they are as a city.”

The time and effort that local officials put into the HQ2 bid won’t be wasted if Amazon decides to go elsewhere, Rosa said. Information that North Texas leaders compiled on potential sites, as well as the region’s workforce, education, housing and other considerations, will be useful when luring other large companies, he said. Chasing Amazon has encouraged leaders to cooperate and to think big and boldly about economic development, he added.

Robert Grunnah, a land broker at Younger Partners, said DFW is “legendary” for its ability to attract new business, and availability of quality sites is just one piece of the puzzle.

“The area’s competing communities are responsive and hospitable with a myriad of welcoming political structures,” Grunnah said. ”Having the option of many available sites allows for a more than adequate economic analysis. There are few competing national markets that can offer our diverse business amenities and selection of financially hospitable locations.”

See article here.

Trick or Treat: Younger Partners Style with Chili, Charity & Costumes

Halloween is tomorrow and while some tricks will be had, our team had fun gathering treats for the North Texas Food Bank. Our property management team for DFW Business Center was flying high after being awarded the best Halloween costume, while team captain (and YP co-founder) Moody Younger’s team was awarded the envied title of “BEST CHILI” for our 2018 chili cook off! Congrats to all of our winners! #TrickorTreat #TogetherWeCook #TogetherWeContribute

Younger Partners Finishes Top 10 in DBJ’s 2018 Best Places to Work

The Younger Partners team is humbled to finish in the Top 10 of in the medium category of the Dallas Business Journal’s 2018 Best Places to Work. Thanks to our leadership & the entire team for making this a Best Place to Work. #dfwworks #bptw #teamwork #togetherwewin See the full rankings here.

The BPTW event was deemed “DFW’s biggest company picnic” at the Dr Pepper Ballpark Center in Frisco with colleagues and families invited to join in corn hole, giant Jenga, the hula hoop hustle, among other fun and games.

Younger Partners Gives Back; Volunteering at Bonton Farms

Volunteering together is a great teambuilding exercise and allows us to give back to the community simultaneously. The Younger Partners team spent Friday morning on the Bonton Farm harvesting vegetables, chopping & stacking wood, and feeding the goats. #togetherwegiveback #teambuilding

If you’d like to learn more about Bonton Farms, check out their website here.

A hot & sweaty crew after working on the farm.

The earlybirds before the work started.

The Bonton Farms mission statement: An agricultural intervention to restore lives, create jobs and ignite hopein the most forgotten and neglected neighborhoods for the most marginalized and vulnerable people.

Bonton is a South Dallas community where 85% of men have been to prison, poverty is rampant and jobs are scarce. Bonton is also a “Food Desert” where access to healthy foods is non-existent. Bonton Farms is on a mission to change that.

if you’d like to learn more about Bonton Farms, check out their website here.