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This Week's Dallas-Fort Worth Deal Sheet

Comerica Bank Tower in Downtown Dallas remains a favorite office spot for North Texas legal eagles.

Comerica Bank Tower

The building just renewed a 37K SF lease with law firm Faegre Drinker, which occupies two floors inside the tower. The firm is the result of a February merger between two international law firms: Drinker Biddle & Reath and Faegre Baker Daniels. 

The same building renewed a 30K SF office lease with law firm Morgan Lewis this year. 

JLL’s Daryl Mullin, Jon McNeil and Greg McCavera negotiated the terms of the Faegre Drinker lease with M-M Properties’ Mike Silliman. 

TriGate Capital is the building's owner. 

Merriman Anderson/Architects founders Jerry and Deby Merriman

EXECS

Two legends in the U.S. and Dallas architectural space are retiring from the business. Jerry and Deby Merriman formed Merriman Anderson/Architects as a small family-run firm in 1987. With a team of architects, the Merrimans grew their practice into a major player in the design space, expanding until it had office locations in Dallas, Austin and Charlotte. 

President and founder Jerry Merriman and his wife, Director of Human Resources Deby Merriman, are retiring from their company after 33 years at the helm.

The firm has handled more than 40 Downtown Dallas design projects under the Merrimans’ guidance. Its portfolio includes the historic renovation of The Statler hotel in Dallas, the former First National Bank Tower (now The National), the Old Dallas Public Library, Lone Star Gas Lofts and 1900 Pacific Residences. 

“I could never have imagined our firm’s success when Deby and I got started in 1987,” Jerry Merriman said in a statement. “We scrambled to keep the work flowing back then, and now we are over 100 employees in three offices. Our kids grew up in our Dallas office where we put them to work in the summers answering phones and filing. I am humbled by the accolades and awards, but the true credit for MAA’s success goes to our talented staff and loyal clients.”

As the Merrimans move into retirement, Vice President and former Director of Design Milton Anderson will be moving into the role of president. 

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KAI Architects hired Chris Upton to serve as education practice leader within its Dallas-Fort Worth office. Upton previously managed construction for the Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District. 

Upton spent two decades in the construction industry, serving as a studio leader for Toll Brothers and architectural project manager for Parkhill Smith & Cooper in Midland. 

Beard Park in the growing community of Little Elm, Texas.

ACQUISITIONS/SALES

Centurion American Development Group acquired nearly 523 acres of the Spiritas Ranch in Little Elm from Spiritas Ranch Enterprises.

The property, located off Highway 380 in the DFW northern suburb of Little Elm, will be used to develop more than 2,000 single-family homes inside a master-planned community that's also zoned for future commercial development. 

The developer has yet to name its building partners. 

Construction is set to begin in the first quarter of next year. Mehrdad Moayedi is the force behind Centurion American and the new Little Elm development.

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Greystone | Investment Sales Group brokered the sale of two DFW multifamily assets in recent weeks: the 52-unit Cambridge Court at 1301 U.S. Highway 287 in Waxahachie and the 125-unit apartment asset known as St. Charles Place at 1090 St. Charles St. in Lewisville. 

Greystone ISG’s Todd Franks represented the local DFW seller in the Cambridge Court transaction, while colleague Byron Griffith procured a buyer. Greystone’s Mark Allen and Chibuzor Nnaji represented the seller and also found a buyer for the St. Charles Place asset. 

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Two commercial spaces totaling 18K SF in Downtown Cleburne are about to be redeveloped by the Maddox Group after being listed together. Vision Commercial Real Estate announced the sale of the two sites located at 110 West Henderson St. and 207 North Mill St. in Cleburne. 

Coldwell Banker’s Cheri White represented the buyer, while Vision Commercial Real Estate’s Philip Green handled negotiations for the seller.

A vacant Toys R Us has been transformed into a Spirit Halloween seasonal pop-up shop in Seal Beach, California

LEASES

Spirit Halloween leased approximately 10K SF at 711 West Pioneer Parkway in Arlington. The speciality retailer will occupy what was once an Advance Auto Parts location. RESOLUT RE’s Stephanie Jacobs and Jeff Lewin represented the landlord. 

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Clarion Partners leased 48K SF at 3001 Airfield Drive in Euless to FNS Inc. The site is inside the DFW Airfield Logistics development created by Seefried Industrial Properties. Lee & Associates’ Becky Thompson and Tom Walrich represented the landlord, while Landmark Realty Group’s Eddie Yoo represented the tenant, FNS Inc. 

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StreetLevel Investments’ Shops at Chisholm Trail Ranch shopping center is now open to the public and is 90% leased despite concerns over falling retail activity during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Located at the corner of Chisholm Trail Parkway and McPherson Boulevard in Fort Worth, the site now has retailers like Ross, Marshalls, Old Navy, Ulta and Five Below up and operating. 

A Studio Movie Grill has also opened, and the center has signed on several new tenants, including Spectrum, Chipotle, Care Now, Crumbl, Luxx Nails and Texas Health.

The development has 250K SF, including 130K SF of junior anchor retail space, a 40K SF movie theater site and 80K SF dedicated to service retail and dining concepts. 

StreetLevel Investments launched the project in January 2019, with Arch-Con Corp. handling construction and Edge Realty Partners serving as the leasing agent. The program manager for the site is Bjerke Management Solutions’ Keith Bjerke.

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A day care in Murphy is opening on the northwest corner of F-M 544 and McCreary Road. The Kiddie Academy franchise location is leasing the site with plans to open next summer. Bright Realty represented Murphy Equity Management and relied on Britton Lankford to handle negotiations, while The Woodmont Co.’s Grant Gary represented the tenant. 

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Maxdao Inc. leased 12K SF inside Jupiter Business Park’s Building 5 at 2532 Summit Ave. in Plano. Stream Realty Partners’ Ryan Wolcott and James Mantzuranis represented landlord Ranger DRA Advisors, while Sunet Group represented the tenant. 

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All-Tex Supply renewed a 31K SF lease at Manana 35 Business Center, 10790-10804 North Stemmons Freeway in Dallas. Stream Realty Partners’ Drew Feagin and Todd Poticny represented landlord, Ranger D-TX LP, while Stream Realty Partners’ Ryan Boozer and Lena Pierce represented the tenant. 

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Carrier Enterprise extended its 67K SF lease at Parc North - Building 4, at 5051 North Sylvania Ave. in Fort Worth. Stream Realty Partners’ Brett Carlton, Forrest Cook and Seth Koschak represented the landlord, EastGroup Properties, while CBRE represented the tenant. 

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Canal Centre Investors renewed a lease with tenant G2 Secure Staff LLC for 11K SF inside the Canal Centre at 400 East Las Colinas Blvd. in Irving.

THIS OR THAT 

Granite Properties launched a $10M “Inspire Wellness” program this month, focused on health and wellness in buildings. The initiative involves the company retrofitting its commercial buildings with touchless fixtures, UV lighting and needlepoint bipolar ionization technology to purify the air and stave off viruses like the coronavirus. The program will impact Granite properties in areas such as Dallas, Atlanta, Denver, Houston and Southern California. 

CORRECTION, AUG. 18, 11:55 A.M. CT: A previous version of this story did not properly credit the broker for the landlord on the The Kiddie Academy franchise deal. The story has been updated.