August 15, 2014

Trinity LeftBank project on West Seventh Street about ready to go, says developer

A grocer plans a 50,000-square-foot urban concept store and as many as 1,700 residential units are planned for the near west side project.

The developer of the Trinity LeftBank project planned on West Seventh Street said he has agreements with a grocer, a luxury hotel and a multifamily developer, and plans to begin the $300 million project in the first quarter of 2015.

West Miller, president of Dallas-based Centergy Retail, told the Cultural District Alliance Thursday night that he has been working with city staff on terms for an economic development agreement to fund up to $25 million in public infrastructure improvements needed at the 35-acre site.

As soon as that’s approved, the project can get started, he said. The agreement requires City Council approval, which could come in the next couple of weeks, he said.

Miller will front the money for the infrastructure work and be paid back through a Chapter 380 agreement, which is similar to property tax incentives but can extend beyond 10 years. Miller expects his reimbursement over 20 years. He said he will not be asking for any other incentives.

Centergy completed its acquisition of the land in early 2013, the bulk of which was bought from Chesapeake Land Co. The site is on the north side of Seventh Street between the Fort Worth & Western Railroad tracks and the west bank of the Trinity, up to about Kansas Street.

Miller called the site, across from Trinity Park, “the last significant piece” to complete the West 7th urban village. He won’t release renderings of the proposed project, but said the retail space will run along West Seventh Street, the hotel near the Trinity River levee and the apartments — possibly as many as 1,700 — behind.

A public square and a promenade on the river levee are planned, he said. Miller also won’t name the developers involved to this point, although Neiman Marcus and Whole Foods once considered the site.

The grocery store will take about 50,000 square feet of the planned 100,000 square feet of retail space and the hotel will have about 150 rooms. The first phase of residences will include 600 units, he said. All of that is expected to open in the fall of 2016.

Trinity LeftBank’s design is contemporary, he said, much like some projects he did along Dallas’s popular Knox Street. There will be no chain restaurants, he said.

“We have those users in mind,” Miller said. “We’re not trying to bring Dallas to Fort Worth, but Knox Street is very similar to what we’re proposing. We’re 60 percent to 70 percent ready to go. We’re at the goal line.”

Some contaminated soil has been remediated at the site, but utilities, such a huge water main, need to be replaced and rerouted, and the property boosted about three feet to meet new stormwater runoff requirements, Miller said.

J.D. Granger, executive director of the Trinity River Vision Authority, which is overseeing the $910 million economic and flood control project nearby, said Trinity LeftBank has partnered with the group to address the levee in a very creative manner.

“Their plans will take advantage of the many opportunities a riverfront provides a community and will give their residents and visitors a unique and exciting waterfront experience,” Granger said.

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