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Key Trademark Property Hire Is The First Salvo In Future Redevelopment Of Galleria Dallas

One day, the prediction goes, aging regional shopping malls like Galleria Dallas will need to give up some of their retail space and add walkable amenities, multifamily product and programming to recapture their 1980s traffic patterns.

Trademark Property Co., the current operator of the Galleria Dallas, is already preparing for such a transformation: The firm launched a multifamily development platform and announced the hiring of Chad Colley as its multifamily partner and senior vice president.

"Many great retail locations have too much shop space today," said Terry Montesi, CEO of Trademark Property. "All of that retail doesn't need to go away, but you may only need a third of what's there or a half of what's there, and you can then consolidate [it], add public spaces and get entitlements to add multifamily, hotel and office."

An ice rink inside the Galleria Dallas mall could become a major selling point for any future mixed-use redevelopment by Trademark Property that uses the mall as a centerpiece.

Colley comes from Criterion Development Partners, where he served as director of development. Colley chose the role at Trademark because as a multifamily specialist he foresaw a sea change in the CRE landscape where he would need to partner with a strong retail and mixed-use developer to fully amenitize the apartment complexes he enjoys creating.

"I was focused on building multifamily," Colley said. "But over the last year or two, I was noticing we wanted to have a grocer on-site, an office on-site or coworking space."

As Colley looked for the best partner to develop these assets organically, he came together with Trademark because he believes Trademark possesses the mixed-use background and experience in finding the right tenants and programming.

Adding Colley allows Trademark to swing from being mostly a multifamily operator and investor to a ground-up developer of apartment assets. Until now, it has mostly looked outside for multifamily developers or investment opportunities to add assets to its mixed-use portfolio. 

"It just didn't make sense to give away the multifamily opportunities anymore," Montesi said. "It makes sense to envision, construct, and then to operate mixed-use as an integrated asset."

Trademark is already working on a redevelopment vision for Galleria Dallas and at least two other U.S. malls that could incorporate Colley's multifamily development skills and the more integrated mixed-use approach that Trademark is advocating. 

The end result of such a collision of talents would be a reduction in retail space at these older malls and the use of larger blocks of empty space to build out new asset types like multifamily, hotel or office to enhance density while preserving key assets such as ice rinks or other highly trafficked amenities.

"It makes sense for all three of those [malls] to have less retail space and to add multifamily, for instance," Montesi said. "Most of them also would make sense for creative office and some would make sense for hotels."