What's Next for Fort Worth?
Exciting new developments are blossoming in Fort Worth from a 330k SF outlet mall coming to North Fort Worth to a six-acre multifamily development site in the Trinity Bluff corridor coming to market. That's why we’re excited to host Bisnow’s annual Fort Worth State of the Market event at the Omni Fort Worth on April 21.
The Woodmont Co chairman Stephen Coslik (far right, with GFF’s Ted Gupton and Freese & Nichols’ Kirk Millican at a Bisnow event) will be a featured speaker on the panel. He tells us his 35-year-old company has developed more than 10M SF of retail across 33 states. Woodmont is developing the 330k SF outlet mall, called Outlets at Alliance, at the northeast corner of Cabela Drive and I-35W, just across the street from Cabela’s (which is the chain’s No. 2 store, bringing in more than $100M and 3.5 million visitors annually.)
Stephen says the site, which will be purchased from Hillwood, is a great location adjacent to established retail. The mammoth outlet mall will open all at once in late 2016. A few tenants have already committed, but he's keeping mum on the details. Groundwork should start soon on the project. Why outlet shopping? Stephen says there are about 7 million people across the Metroplex and historical data shows that an outlet mall is needed for every 1.5 million to 2 million residents. Right now, there’s only the Allen outlet mall and another at I-20 and Hwy 360 in Grand Prairie. “I think, in terms of spacing and population density, this site will fill a void,” he says. He says Hillwood will likely have outparcels with restaurants in front of the outlet mall, too.
Woodmont is in the final stages of construction for the 190k SF Park Village shopping center in Southlake, across from Southlake Town Square. The project features tenants like REI, Fresh Market, Michael’s and Luke’s Locker, and will have about a dozen restaurants before it’s done, he tells us. The first phase, along the rim of the development, has opened with about 100k SF. The village specialty center will be about 90k SF and should have tenants moving in this summer and fall. Among the line-up: Orvis, Gloria’s, RA Sushi, Modmarket, Potbelly and Malai Kitchen, among others, he says. The project has been about two years in the making, Stephen tells us. When he’s not building new projects, he likes to run about 20 miles each week or chase after his two youngest kids, ages 14 and 18.
New multifamily product in Fort Worth has come on strong in the last 12 to 18 months as new construction has slowed, says Institutional Property Advisors Texas director (and hometown boy) Drew Kile. All of the sectors have done well during this recovery; with the newer product seeing a strong recent surge. Fort Worth has seen rent growth of 6.6% in the past 12 months, which is slightly better than the greater Dallas market, which saw rent growth of 5.1% during the same period, according to the latest MPF data. Occupancies in Fort Worth are also slightly stronger at 95.1% versus 94.7% in Dallas, Drew tells us. (Pictured is Drew with his family, wife Lynnette, and 3-year-old Eleanor and 8-month-old Lillian.)
Drew tells us he’s seeing a strong interest across all multifamily asset classes from Class-B and -C value-add through core Class-A in-town listings. Fort Worth is moving up on buyer radars across the board, from major private to large institutional buyers. IPA is marketing several Fort Worth properties including the 189-unit AMLI 7th Street Station (pictured), a luxury, low-density property near Downtown on West 7th Street. Many people don't realize that the Fort Worth multifamily urban core market didn’t exist five to seven years ago, Drew tells us. During the rapid growth cycle seen along West Seventh, for example, there have been several properties in lease-up at any one time. Now, that the pipeline has slowed to only one or two properties in lease-up, it’s no surprise that rent growth and occupancies are moving up expeditiously.
IPA also has the exclusive listing of the 6.4-acre Downtown Fort Worth development site (pictured in red) in the high-growth Trinity Bluff neighborhood. This high barrier-to-entry site is on a bluff along the Trinity River which offers investors the opportunity to develop a multifamily asset in an irreplaceable location, Drew tells us. He’s starting to see some of the first high-profile buildings trade in the Fort Worth urban core, and he expects to see pricing continue to move up as the market’s track record strengthens. With limited new supply, net absorption, rent growth and occupancy metrics, Drew thinks the market will remain strong.