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January 12, 2011 
Capstar(ry) Merger

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CAPSTAR Commercial Real Estate Services has joined Cassidy Turley as part of the firm’s growth plan into two new markets: Dallas and Houston, says Cassidy Turley CEO Mark Burkhart.
Bret Bunnett
Yesterday, we spoke with CAPSTAR principal Bret Bunnett (pictured) who tells us Cassidy Turley’s MO made the partnership appealing. Often sharing clients, Bret says merging creates opportunities to expand geographically and expand service offerings by leveraging Cassidy Turley’s capital markets, tenant rep, and corporate services platforms. Founded in 2000, CAPSTAR has five principals who are founding members: Bret, Johnny Johnson, John Patterson, Trey Smith, and Chris Taylor. They will remain responsible for developing the company’s Texas business. CAPSTAR will be formally known as Cassidy Turley and transition to the new name by Feb. 15. In 2010, Cassidy Turley enhanced its global service delivery through its partnership with GVA Grimley. Its Dallas and Houston operations now include more than 100 professionals and staff and completed more than 3M SF of transactions in 2010. The firm has a 14.5M SF management and leasing portfolio comprised of primarily Class-A office space.

Richard Crow, Moody Younger, Bob Bach
We never heard the Imperial March or saw the emperor, but we did hang out with the Grubb & Ellis folks at the firm's 2011 CRE forecast at the Death Star yesterday. We snapped Myers & Crow’s Richard Crow, Grubb & Ellis executive managing director of Texas Moody Younger, and chief economist Bob Bach in a pre-game pump up. (We hear that Moody considered pouring the wine over Bob’s head in celebration, but opted wisely to drink it.) Moody tells us that 2010 ended on a positive note with Dallas' transactions up 69% over the previous year, and Grubb's Dallas Top 10 producers were up 93%. “In 2009, you couldn’t find a deal. In 2010, it was hard to get across the goal line, but the deals were there. In 2011, we hope to see more game in the market,” he says.
Cowboy Stadium construction
With a little more than three weeks until the Super Bowl, the $1.4B Cowboys Stadium is undergoing a facelift to rival Jerry Jones’ work. We snapped the construction progress as the normally 80,000-seat stadium—with a 100,000-person capacity for most Cowboys games—adds enough seating for 120,000 ticket-holders. The retractable-dome stadium held a record 108,000 fans for the NBA All-Star game last year and Jerry's seeing dollar signs as he shoots for 120,000 to attend the Super Bowl.
Bob Bach
We like having fun with Bob (as we did in November). Even though he may have his own 10-gallon hat (from his days as a Dallas city planner from '79 to '84), we gave him a virtual one. He says the investment market has been the biggest surprise: capital returned in a big way in 2010, with a 90% capital return over the 20% to 30% forecast. The best Class-A properties in constrained markets (like midtown Manhattan and DC) erupted in bidding wars for core properties with Boston and San Francisco following the melee. In 2011, he’s optimistic and forecasts a 75% increase, “though problems are still out there like debt and public sector debt.”
Billy Vahrenkamp, Kim Vaughn, Daniel Rudd
Grubb & Ellis’ Billy Vahrenkamp and Daniel Rudd surround Community Hospice of Texas CFO Kim Vaughn on the Cowboys Stadium turf. Both Billy and Daniel are among Grubb & Ellis’ Top 10 producers for 2010. Bob’s forecast for 2011: a lot more optimism, not only in CRE but across the economy. “And, I forecast that the Cowboys will do better next year, too,” he adds.

Todd Boysen, Joe Griffith, Nick Shepherd, Dean Zurmely, Herb Weitzman
It was standing-room only at Nick & Sam's in Uptown yesterday morning. While the crowd resembled a throng there to see Justin Bieber, they were actually eyeing The Weitzman Group top dog Herb Weitzman (right) and his retail experts including Pier 1’s Todd Boysen, JPMorgan Chase’s Joe Griffith, Carlson Restaurants Worldwide’s Nick Shepherd, and JCPenney’s Dean Zurmely. Herb says 2010 saw three major improvements: Texas added 200,000 jobs; retail holiday sales were up nearly 4%; and leasing absorption jumped to 2.3M SF. Last year saw the DFW retail market start to climb from the bottom; community centers came back with their strongest performance since 2006. The outlook for 2011: growth for community centers, 89% occupancy by year's end, and 1.2M SF of new construction.
We're forecasting more time by the fireplace sipping a peppermint mocha while writing up your deals. How about you? E-mail Tonie at tonie@bisnow.com.
Kurz (Property Tax)
Corenet SW (Jan)
Toby BOMA (spirit)
American Airlines DC ATL
The Colony EDC_DFW_RE
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