Real Deals: Cleburne, cars and construction on agenda

Construction is under way for the new Kris Brown Chevrolet Buick GMC at 822 Walter Holliday Drive/U.S. 67 in Cleburne. Fort Worth-based general contractor Speed Fab-Crete and its design-build architectural partner, Callahan & Freeman, are performing construction and design services for the project, which includes a 62,000-square-foot, two-story, state-of-the-art sales and service facility on 20 acres. Completion is slated for May. The dealership will be one of the first of GM’s new generation of dealerships that combine Chevrolet alongside Buick and GMC. It is expected to create about 40-50 new jobs for the Cleburne/Johnson County region, and will house several hundred new cars and more than 100 used cars. Kris Brown Chevrolet Buick GMC will align with GM’s new branding guidelines, featuring an exterior entrance with the three brands’ new design and signage, a combined service facility and modern showrooms. The showroom and waiting areas will include features such as a work area with phone and laptop computer power outlets, complimentary Wi-Fi, a children’s play area, and a cafe. Brown, 41, follows in the footsteps of her father, Mike Brown, who has been in the car business for decades and operates Mike Brown Ford Chrysler Jeep Dodge Hyundai in Granbury.

Amarillo by morning Fort Worth-based Morris-Floyd Capital Partners announced the acquisition of a 13.5-acre outdoor community shopping center in Amarillo. Located at 2015 S. Georgia St., near the intersection of Georgia St. and Interstate 40, the 159,000-square-foot Wolflin Village shopping center is anchored by Talbot’s, Office Depot and Shepler’s Boots ‘n Jeans. Morris-Floyd purchased the center with existing financing assumed from Wells Fargo. Chris Cosby and Chris Gerard of CBRE brokered the sale. The center was purchased from Dunhill Partners, who acquired it in 2009 from Weingarten Realty Inc., which had owned the property for more than 20 years. Originally developed in 1953 and renovated in 2009, Wolflin Village is at 94 percent occupancy. “We have plans to upgrade and reinvent Wolflin Village in order to stay relevant in today’s demanding retailing environment,” said Walter Floyd, principal at Morris-Floyd.

If you’re goin’ to San Francisco The Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco (FHLBank San Francisco) awarded $56.6 million in Affordable Housing Program grants in the bank’s 2013 AHP funding competition. The grants were awarded through 25 bank members to 94 projects that will produce or preserve 5,733 units of housing affordable to lower-income residents in Arizona, California, Florida, Maine, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and Washington. The 2013 grants include projects in Fort Worth. The AHP is a flexible source of gap funding for projects that create affordable housing for low-income and moderate-income families and individuals. Grants awarded in 2013, ranging from $15,000 to $1.5 million per project, will support a wide range of targeted projects, including: •New construction of rental housing for low-income families, seniors, the formerly homeless, or individuals and households with special needs; •Building of Habitat for Humanity homes; •Sustainable developments that will be LEED-certified or GreenPoint Rated; •Permanent supportive housing with services for veterans, young people aging out of the foster care system, or the developmentally disabled.

Texas Trust Texas Trust Credit Union has opened a 3,009-square-foot branch in Hurst at the former site of a Bank of America branch. The new branch at 103 West Harwood Road, the credit union’s 11th, offers full financial services, four drive-through lanes and a drive-up ATM. The branch is managed by Espy Taylor and employs 11 people, including seven recent hires. “This branch is part of our expansion plan toward our goal of becoming a $1 billion financial institution,” said Jim Minge, president of Texas Trust. That expansion includes adding 11 new Texas Trust branded ATMs in high traffic areas, including the one in Hurst, to give members better access and additional technologies such as mobile deposit services. In July, Texas Trust announced plans to merge with Arlington-based Security One Credit Union. The merger would create the 18th largest credit union in Texas with $815 million in assets, 65,000 members and 13 locations.

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Cousins Properties Cousins Properties Inc. has reached a deal to buy a portfolio of 11 office buildings for $1.1 billion in cash, a move that expands the office and retail property owner’s operations in Texas. The deal includes 10 buildings with 4.4 million square feet of office space in Houston and the 980,000-square-foot 777 Main St., a Class-A office tower in downtown Fort Worth. The properties are being sold by a joint venture run by Crescent Real Estate Holdings LLC. Cousins said it expects to fund the transaction through a combination of mortgage financing, the sale of non-core assets and stock sale proceeds. The real estate investment trust also started a public offering of 60 million shares of its common stock, intended to help fund the purchase. The underwriters are expected to be granted a 30-day option to purchase up to 9 million additional shares. The transaction is expected to close by mid-September. JP Morgan Securities LLC served as the company’s exclusive financial adviser on the acquisition.

Harmony Harmony Public Schools, operated by the Cosmos Foundation, has signed a lease for 5,538 square feet of space at 1981 Stadium Oaks Court in Arlington, on the Galactic campus. Harmony Public Schools are college preparatory charter schools that serve students from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. The Cosmos Foundation is a nonprofit corporation that was established in Houston. The foundation is organized and operates exclusively for educational, scientific and literary purposes and is dedicated to quality education. Judy Nitzinger with SCM Real Estate Services represented the landlord, and Loren Hilliar with Metro Commercial represented the tenant in this transaction.

M/I Homes M/I Homes Inc. of Columbus, Ohio, is entering the Dallas-Fort Worth market, representing a continued expansion of its operations in Texas. M/I Homes entered the Houston market in 2010, the San Antonio market in 2011, and the Austin market this year. Louie Ocana has joined M/I Homes as Dallas-Fort Worth area president.

JQ in Fort Worth Thomas L. Scott, a JQ principal, has relocated from the Dallas to the Fort Worth office of JQ to lead and manage the firm’s regional growth in Fort Worth, according to managing principal Stephen H. Lucy. Established in 2007, JQ’s Fort Worth office offers services including structural and civil engineering, surveying and facility assessments. It has been engaged in many high profile projects, among them the Tarrant County College District’s Trinity River East Campus; Texas Christian University’s Amon G. Carter Stadium, the Tarrant County Civil Courts Building, Bell Helicopter headquarters, and Tarrant Regional Water District’s Integrated Pipeline project. The firm is also providing the structural and surveying services for the city of Fort Worth’s new Public Safety Training Center.

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Mansfield buy Institutional Property Advisors (IPA), a multifamily brokerage division of Marcus & Millichap, has arranged the sale of Dolce Living at Mansfield, a 334-unit multifamily complex. The terms of the sale were not disclosed. IPA executive director Will Balthrope and IPA associate director Drew Kile advised the seller, DLC Residential. The buyer is Advenir. Built in 2012 on 18.6 acres, the property is located at 370 North Texas 360 in Mansfield, adjacent to the Mansfield National Golf Club. n

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