Trends in the Far North Dallas Office Market
Brad Gibson, Leasing Manager at HALL Group
Since Craig Hall purchased what is now HALL Park, Frisco has evolved from a small North Texas town into the fastest-growing city in the U.S., now with a population exceeding 185,000. A lot has changed over my 10 years in the business. Here are the biggest changes I’ve seen and what is next on the horizon.
Ten years ago, desired amenities were pretty cut and dry – conference space, favorable parking, a nearby deli and a fitness center. As millennials have now become the largest generation in the workforce, many companies are laser-focused on creating an attractive culture and workspace to recruit and retain them as top talent. This has led to increased involvement from HR teams and a new sophistication in amenities offered at offices today. The “Experiential Workplace” is now synonymous with the top real estate developments in North Texas. As technology has blurred the lines between the work day and personal time, developers and employers have had to adapt to cater to a more comprehensive lifestyle.
When I began at HALL Park, we were the only major player in terms of office space in Frisco. We competed with office properties in neighboring cities, but were the only major office development north of 121. Today, we are surrounded by new developments including The Star, Frisco Station and Legacy West in Plano. All these projects are exploring new, innovative ways to attract tenants to their development, and HALL Park is no exception.
One of our greatest differentiators has always been our green space. One-third of HALL Park’s 162 acres is dedicated to green space, jogging trails, lakes and public art, offering workers a break from the noise and a place to recharge. We have also developed outdoor working and recreational spaces for meetings and team building.
We currently have 17 office buildings, which has given us the ability to accommodate the growth of many of the companies in the park, helping them expand into new buildings as their businesses grow in Frisco. In our next phase, we are currently planning a residential component, hotel, additional dining, entertainment and a programmed public park – creating a fully mixed-use community.
The market has shifted to where employers are beginning to consider more efficiency in the office space they lease. Collaborative environments are taking over, while traditional closed-door offices are dwindling. To complement the shift in culture, HALL Park is thinking outside of the box to provide the best amenities and places for people to connect.
North Texas continues to be attractive to corporate relocations and Far North Dallas has had several recently announced, such as the PGA of America, Toyota North America and Keurig Dr. Pepper. I believe this will continue, as the area is poised to support these companies with forward-thinking leadership at the City of Frisco, a strong workforce and new talent – particularly in the technology field – from local universities. The diverse tenant mix will help the area remain successful throughout different economic cycles.
For the first half of 2019, multiple sources reported continued strong market absorption and market-high rental rates across the metroplex. The Legacy/Frisco office submarket recorded the most absorption YTD at over 600,000 square feet. I expect us to continue to see strong demand for new office space in Far North Dallas, with a premium on Class A and AA properties. Existing owners will continue to upgrade and enhance existing buildings to meet tenant demand and compete with newer product.
We are in an exciting time in real estate in North Texas. With technology advancing almost every aspect of the tenant experience, new trends in amenities and increased development standards, we will continue to improve the office experience.