Texas Real Estate Business

OCT 2017

Texas Real Estate Business magazine covers the multifamily, retail, office, healthcare, industrial and hospitality sectors in Texas.

Issue link: http://texasrealestatebusiness.epubxp.com/i/885420

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Page 54 of 58

52 • October 2017 • Texas Real Estate Business www.REBusinessOnline.com HEALTHY DESIGN PIPELINE ARCHITECTURE from page 1 2014 to 2024. "Right now we have 300 employ- ees versus only 100 seven years ago," says Greg Faulkner, president of Humphrey & Part- ners Architects LP, a Dallas-based mul- tifamily and mixed- use design firm. "We are having a record year for billings for the seventh year in a row, which makes the current pipeline the busiest in our history." This uptick comes at a time when commercial real estate, especially re- tail, is in a state of flux. Architects say their clients are reconfiguring their approaches to physical spaces as the tried and true methods of design from years past are not aging well. To that end, architects are proving invaluable in today's development process. "There is a great deal of information that architects bring to the table today that enhance the project outcome, as well as benefiting our clients," says Marsha Getto-Aikens, vice president of business development at HKS Inc., the architectural firm behind AT&T Stadium in Arlington for the Dallas Cowboys and the upcoming Globe Life Field in Arlington for the Texas Rangers baseball team. "Everything from the use of design technology, to new materials and more innovative construction techniques are available to architects, and it is imperative that we share this informa- tion with our clients," she says. Answering the Demand The projects in the development pipeline today are far from cookie cut- ter as consumers and tenants alike are seeking unique- ness, and archi- tects are up for the challenge of fulfill- ing that need. "We don't just drop buildings into parking lots anymore," says J. Tipton House- wright, principal and CEO of Omni- plan, a Dallas-based architecture firm. "The formulas and rules that we saw for years and years are now being cast aside as people look for new creative solutions." Multifamily continues to be on a development tear as demand is out- pacing supply, according to several multifamily industry associations. The National Multifamily Housing Coun- cil and the National Apartment Asso- ciation announced in mid-September that the nation — including Texas, a state that has seen a large wave of multifamily development since the re- cession — needs 4.6 million more mul- tifamily residences by 2030. "Industry associations in the multi- family market continue to suggest that we need to build 50,000 units in Texas a year for the foreseeable future," says Housewright. Humphreys & Partners is the archi- tect behind LVL 29, a 29-story high- rise apartment tower that is set to open in May 2019 within the Legacy West development in Plano. The proj- ect will feature a seven-story parking deck, 24-hour fitness center, a pool and tanning deck and a lounge veranda, as well as the myriad of amenities in the surrounding Legacy West district. Multifamily has certainly fared bet- ter in recent years than retail, as vary- ing research reports estimate that any- where from 8,000 to 10,000 stores in North America are expected to close in 2017. Despite the challenges in today's retail environment, architects are ad- vising their clients that the continued rise of e-commerce is an opportunity to create stores and shopping centers that are well suited for the future. "The growth of e-commerce has cre- ated new priorities, both in terms of retailers and retail developers," says CallisonRTKL's Gunning. "Stores are introducing new ideas to make shop- ping more experiential, as are mall de- velopers." CallisonRTKL re- cently designed a new Neiman Marcus store in Fort Worth that features a prod- uct called "memory mirrors." Gunning says the mirrors al- low shoppers to view the products they're wearing from multiple angles and in different colors. Features like these are boosting customer satisfac- tion and providing a better overall shopping experience, as well as a cool factor, which ultimately should bring more foot traffic. "Today's retail industry is about get- ting consumers off their couches, be- cause they can buy almost anything from their couches on their phones," says Gunning. To help mitigate the risk of develop- ing heavily in one property type, de- velopers have shown a preference to Available Land and Buildings 45 Miles East of Houston 45 Miles West of Beaumont City Owned Utilities Municipal Airport Trinity Valley Exposition Rodeo Arena and Fairgrounds Municipal Park with Sand Volleyball, Soccer, Softball/Baseball Fields, Playgrounds, and Water Park Magnolia Ridge Golf Course Cultural Center and Library Expedited Permitting and Zoning Foreign Trade Zone and Freeport Tax Exemption Liberty Community Development Corporation 1829 Sam Houston Liberty, TX 77575 936-336-3684 • 936-336-9846 (fax) BEAUMONT HOUSTON Visit us at Booth #348 ICSC Texas Conference Architects are cognizant of the open spaces at their projects. Omniplan designed an open courtyard at Baybrook Mall in Friendswood that is programmable for events like family movie nights. Greg Faulkner Humphrey & Partners Jeff Gunning CallisonRTKL J. Tipton Housewright Omniplan

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