AllianceTexas growing jobs, developing startup component

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The 18,000 acre AllianceTexas generated $155.9 million in property taxes paid to local public entities in 2016 and continues to bring jobs to the region, with employment numbers increasing to 47,500 on-site jobs, with approximately 2,500 of those jobs coming during 2016.

“The best number for me is the job numbers,” said Mike Berry, president of Hillwood, who presented the study to the Fort Worth City Council on Tuesday, Jan. 24.

“We experienced significant growth over the past year, especially as it relates to our office program throughout the development,” said Berry. “In addition to AllianceTexas producing nearly $5 billion in economic impact last year, we also launched noteworthy projects that we believe will make a lasting imprint on North Texas. In particular, we’re excited to see our long-range vision for Circle T Ranch come to fruition, with the announcement of the Charles Schwab campus and its adjoining mixed-use development that we will develop with The Howard Hughes Corporation.”

Before his presentation, Berry noted that he joined Mayor Betsy Price last week in taking Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to the Stock Show. Zuckerberg later posted a photo from the visit to the rodeo on his Facebook page, which has 85 million followers, Berry said.

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Berry noted that Zuckerberg posted the photo, which shows Zuckerberg, Berry and Price at the rodeo with the caption: “This is truly my first rodeo.”

According to a study by Insight Research Corporation, the development has generated $64 billion in economic impact to the North Texas region, since its establishment in 1989.

In addition to last year’s and the overall cumulative economic impact, the report also highlights that more than $1.76 billion has been paid cumulatively to the taxing entities within the project, including the cities of Fort Worth, Roanoke, Haslet, Northlake and Westlake; two counties, Tarrant and Denton; and two independent school districts, Keller and Northwest, supporting the development since 1990.

In November 2016, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar held a press conference at Fort Worth Alliance Airport to release the results of a study examining the economic impact of both AllianceTexas and the Alliance Global Logistics Hub. The results of the comptroller’s study showed that within the state of Texas, AllianceTexas and the Alliance Global Logistics Hub directly supported an estimated 67,000 jobs, generated $10.9 billion in economic activity and added $6.4 billion to the state’s gross domestic product in 2015.

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In 2016, Hillwood announced several new projects at AllianceTexas, including Charles Schwab’s 500,000-square-foot regional corporate campus located at Circle T Ranch. Originally intended for 1,200 employees, the company has since made plans to expand the facility to accommodate up to approximately 5,000 employees when complete. The campus will serve as an anchor to a 130-acre, 2-million-square-foot mixed-use project which will combine Class A mid-rise office with adjoining retail and entertainment uses.

Late last year, Hillwood Commons I at Alliance Town Center surpassed 90 percent occupancy rate with more than 10 companies leasing space at the Class A office project. The 10 companies include: Title Source, GE Transportation’s Global Services Operations, Regus, Lockheed Martin, TEKSystems, Westinghouse Air Brake Technologies (WABTEC), Peloton Land Solutions and Oxford Global Resources, among others. In November, Hillwood Properties joined the roster of the building’s residents.

Berry noted that along with blue chip companies such as GE and Lockheed, AllianceTexas is also working to be place where startups can set up shop and prove their concepts.

Berry noted Booster Fuels and PickUp, two app-based technology startups have used the Alliance Texas area as a base to prove their concept and both have expanded.

Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

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