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Unique Design And Wellness To Mark The Dallas Office Market In The Near Future

Flight to quality, rush to amenities, strong demand linked to job growth — these are all things people in the Dallas-Fort Worth office market have heard about ad nauseum. The story of the office market has remained largely the same for the last few quarters.

So what is new in the office market? Two office leasing specialists dished on a couple of emerging real estate trends they think will shape the DFW office market in the near future: a renewed emphasis on architecture and decision-makers favoring wellness-oriented design.

Crescent Real Estate’s Uptown development, McKinney & Olive
Rendering of McKinney & Olive in Uptown Dallas

Crescent Real Estate Equities Managing Director John Zogg said he expects an emphasis on world-class architectural design to make a resurgence in the Dallas-Fort Worth office market in the near future.

“If you look at Dallas’ skyline, which is one of the best in the world, it is defined by I.M. Pei, Philip Johnson, Rick Keating and some other great, internationally acclaimed architects. We have not built an office building with that caliber of design in 30 years,” Zogg said. “We forgot what great design was all about.”

But according to him, some are beginning to remember. Successes like McKinney & Olive, designed by architecture giant Pelli Clarke Pelli, have reawakened developers to the potential boons of masterfully designed buildings, and he thinks it will drive them to recruit world-class designers.

“I think it has also made Dallas realize that great design has an unbelievable return,” Zogg said.

Corporate wellness center

These designs are also more likely to focus on wellness. Peloton Commercial Real Estate principal Sarah Hinkley said the groundswell of demand from young professionals has caused developers to plan their spaces with wellness in mind and employers to lease spaces that help their staff be healthy. 

“People are so much more cognizant of wellness. There is so much information out about exercise, food and meditation that we are finally seeing people building out their space for the wellness of their employees,” Hinkley said.

Hinkley said young professionals beginning their careers are not completely swayed by money. Other metrics are leading them to pay a lot of attention to the spaces they will be spending the majority of their waking hours in. According to her, both landlords and employers are taking note.

“The kids that come out of college, they are picking quality of life over money, so what you are seeing is landlords create an environment for that: access to the Katy Trail, bike-sharing, but employers [are] too because a well-balanced, healthy employee is more productive,” Hinkley said.

To hear more about office leasing trends join Bisnow on Thursday, Nov. 30, for the BOLD Big South Office Event where Zogg, Hinkley and more big voices in the business will share their insights on the market.

Correction, NOV. 22, 2:30 P.M. CT: A previous version of this article gave the wrong name for the architecture firm of Mckinney & Olive, Pelli Clarke Pelli.