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  #41  
Old Posted May 27, 2005, 11:06 PM
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GOT IT!!!! YESSSS!!!!
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  #42  
Old Posted May 27, 2005, 11:19 PM
CTroyMathis CTroyMathis is offline
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I'm sure it's already been noticed, but, thread pinned along w/other P&C projects.

(I don't want to offend people trying to work the Gulf and Okla threads though. I suppose if they take off real well, they'll get pinned/stickied to the top as well.)
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  #43  
Old Posted May 28, 2005, 12:15 AM
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I just thought this was interesting.

Shopping center makeovers
Web Posted: 05/27/2005 12:00 AM CDT

Adolfo Pesquera
Express-News Business Writer

Boarded-up retail strip centers don't stay empty as long as they used to.

With more demanding development rules on new commercial projects, land developers are finding abandoned urban anchors like Kmarts and obsolete Wal-Marts more attractive.

San Antonio code requirements add significant costs to new projects on raw land. It makes developers wonder whether they wouldn't be better off investing in older neighborhoods.

"You can landscape far below what is required on a new site," said Mark Neville, the architect for retail center Mission Crossing. "There is no need for a retention pond to offset storm waters."

At Mission Crossing, at Goliad Road and Southeast Military Drive, there is more parking space and more entrances than Neville could build into a new center. It has six entrance-exit curb cuts, where a newer project would have only two. Some are closer to the main intersection.

Chris Cox, Mission Crossing's owner and developer, is pleased with the project's success. Even after cutting 14 feet off an old Kmart store to allow for future development of a Walgreen's pharmacy, he has 167,000 square feet of leaseable space.

And after dividing the building for multiple tenants, he's leased all but one space in less than a year. The neighboring Brooks Corner and City-Base Landing shopping centers still are under construction.

With Anna's Linens, Big Lots, Goodwill Store and a Chinese buffet as major tenants, the site had encouraged neighbors who were chagrined over Kmart's departure.

"We've been very excited about how well it's been received," Cox said. "Several neighbors have dropped by and told us how excited they were that we were doing something positive at that location."

Cox believes in the intersection, despite news that Brooks City-Base may lose its Air Force missions. The coming of Toyota and the prospects for a Texas A&M campus and other corporate moves to Brooks bode well for the area.

Mission Crossing is Cox's second project in collaboration with Neville. He first hired Neville on the renovation of a former H-E-B grocery at Harry Wurzbach and Austin Highway.

When selecting an old retail center for acquisition and renovation, Cox said he looks first at the synergy around the intersection. Both of these sites were blessed with a nearby mix of an H-E-B, Lowe's and Wal-Mart.

"The main thing I look for is other major players that will generate additional traffic," he said.

Neville, a principal with Villa Park Architecture, specializes in renovations. He also does new developments — he was the architect on Boardwalk, a new retail/office center opposite The Dominion — but returned after a job stint in Chicago to his native San Antonio with plenty of ideas.

"This kind of renovation work is a lot more prevalent there," he said. "There are a lot more old buildings."

As older strip centers age, there is increasing pressure to give them a face-lift to keep up with the new competition. And stricter codes on new projects provide an incentive to owners.

Neville returned to San Antonio in 1999, and his first renovation was Southwest Junction at Flores Street and Military Drive. He has returned to the intersection to work with the owners of the empty Kmart opposite Southwest Junction.

The owners who bought it in 2004 also own the Melrose women's fashion stores. Neville anticipates it will be one of the tenants in what will be known as Military Plaza Southwest.

"We're working on preliminary pricing of some of the design concepts," he said.

Architects have their artistic streak, and Neville finds this another reason to gravitate toward renovations. It's a chance, he says, to take a drab facade and jazz it up.

And the absence of harsher code restrictions can leave more money in a developer's budget for visual extras.

"The budget is always a big deal," he said.
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  #44  
Old Posted May 28, 2005, 2:54 PM
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Tower closing for makeover
Web Posted: 05/28/2005 12:00 AM CDT

Christopher Anderson
Express-News Staff Writer

One of San Antonio's signature attractions soon will be out of business — for about a year.

The restaurant and observation deck at the top of the Tower of the Americas will be closed Tuesday as part of an $11million renovation that promises to make the 750-foot-tall landmark a more popular destination for residents and visitors when it reopens next year under a contract awarded to Landry's Restaurants.

The tower-top restaurant will be reborn as Eyes Over Texas at the Tower of the Americas, serving regional and continental dishes. Banquet and private dining rooms will be added to the observation level.

Landry's also will expand the base of the tower to include casual dining for the first time at ground level and a multisensory theater and a gift shop.

"I know that a lot of San Antonio residents have been very eager to see this project start," said City Councilman Roger O. Flores. "The Tower of the Americas is an icon for San Antonio and one of the things people come specifically to see."

The Houston restaurateur was awarded a 15-year contract to operate the 37-year-old facility over longtime operator Tower Foods of San Antonio in part because it guaranteed minimum payments to the city totaling $14.7 million over the life of the deal.

Landry's also got the nod because city officials thought the tower needed a major makeover and a fresh start.

"In any facility that has a long history, at some point over its life you're going to have to refreshen the atmosphere for the present time," Flores said. "It's been 30 years since we've done anything with that facility."

T.J. Connolly, a spokesman for Frontier Enterprises, which owns Tower Foods and operates the Jim's Restaurant chain, said that Jim Hasslocher, the company's founder and chief executive officer, would be at the Tower of the Americas Restaurant from 1 to 2 p.m. Monday to commemorate its final day.

"Mr. Hasslocher wishes both the city and Landry's the very best," Connolly said. "They leave the Tower of Americas with nothing but very fond memories and an awful lot of emotion."

Jonathan Stampley, Landry's project manager, said the company would spend $9 million to improve the tower, with the city contributing another $2million.

The city's contract with Landry's calls for the tower to reopen no later than mid-June 2006.

"We plan to do a complete renovation of the restaurant to provide an upscale, first-class restaurant experience at the top, and we're going to completely renovate the observation level and include more education material," Stampley said.

Meanwhile, another major project is also scheduled to begin soon in the same area.

The city's 750-car parking garage adjacent to the Convention Center will be closed today and razed as soon as next month to make way for a 1,000-room Convention Center Hotel.

Assistant City Manager Chris Brady said the construction of the hotel, expected to open in 2008, would require the closure of one lane on Market Street, while Bowie Street would be open only to southbound traffic.

But the biggest impact is sure to be on people who walk to the Alamodome. The familiar walkway east of the Convention Center that leads under U.S. 281 and Interstate 37 will be closed.

Brady said alternative pedestrian routes are under consideration and he promised the city would make an announcement and install signs before the next major dome event to help direct people walking there.
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  #45  
Old Posted May 29, 2005, 4:52 AM
elmariachi elmariachi is offline
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An update on the mixed-use development at the old SoloServe property.

Adolfo Pesquera
Express-News business writer

The developers of a River Walk luxury condominium community with river- and street-level retail this week bought three downtown buildings on the proposed site.

RTK Development Group and Raba Design Group bought the site for the Piazza San Lorenzo, an Italian-style plaza first proposed for the site in 2003. Their $10 million acquisition of the Book, Clegg and Solo Serve buildings brought the project a big step closer to reality.

Demolition of the Solo Serve building is expected to begin in 120 days, said Larry Raba, head of RTK Development. The other two buildings are considered historic and will undergo renovations.

"We're probably 50 percent complete with all of the architectural and engineering plans," Raba said. "We'll be going back to the Historic Design Review Commission for approvals."

The 1.29-acre site will include an eight-story, 25-unit riverside condominium tower with an adjoining 47-unit, 11-story fractionally owned vacation condominium tower facing Soledad Street.

There are 17,000 square feet of river-level retail shops and cafés planned, with another 30,600 square feet of boutiques and eateries around the street-level plaza.

"We expect most of the condominium units to be presold and essentially all of the retail, restaurant and office space to be leased within 60 days," said Brian Carlton, associate director of Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP, a national commercial loan broker that arranged financing for the project.

Oklahoma-based Stillwater National Bank made the deal possible with a $7.5 million loan.

"(HFF) grabbed hold of this project and within three weeks had it funded," Raba said. "We approached (Stillwater) on the loan and they closed 11 days later. They loved the project."

Sales on the sole-proprietor condominiums will be through an RTK subsidiary, Condos at San Lorenzo. The fractionals will be sold though an international group that Raba declined to identify. Retail leasing will be through D.B. Harrell.

Carlton said HFF is working to arrange construction financing. Construction should begin in late summer with completion sometime in early 2007.
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  #46  
Old Posted May 29, 2005, 5:55 AM
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Its funny, San Antonio is the only city on here that lags real good renderings of its more, sought after, projects. The CC Hotel, 32 story Condos, Piazza, River Improvements, Pearl Brewery, etc. are just to name a few.
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  #47  
Old Posted May 29, 2005, 6:17 AM
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That's so true. I mean there is a ton of things going on, yet we can't get renderings.
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  #48  
Old Posted May 29, 2005, 1:02 PM
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Most of the things you mentioned though are just starting out. The 32 story project is still in the beginning phases of design. And Piazza is 50 percent designed. I think there are plenty of renderings on the first page and some damn good ones too. Now Pearl Brewery has some great renderings for the Aveda spa, but I can't figure out how to get it off their website. Heres the Link.

http://www.avedaisa.com/

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  #49  
Old Posted May 29, 2005, 5:13 PM
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Aveda Spa - Pearl Brewery
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  #50  
Old Posted May 30, 2005, 4:13 PM
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Alamo City in spotlight at national retail conferenceBy Tricia Lynn Silva

San Antonio Business Journal
Updated: 8:00 p.m. ET May 29, 2005LAS VEGAS --

Developers, retailers and brokers from San Antonio have always flocked to Las Vegas for the annual Spring Convention that is sponsored by New York-based industry organization the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC). But this year's event shined an ever-brighter spotlight on the Alamo City -- and the slate of high-profile projects in the works for the city.

What a difference a year makes. For the third time, The Shops at La Cantera was on display during the Spring Convention. In the past, however, it was Columbia, Md.-based The Rouse Co. that was showing off the project -- which will initially bring 1.3 million square feet of shopping space to the Loop 1604/Interstate Highway 10 intersection in Northwest San Antonio.

At this year's conference, the project took center stage at the booth for General Growth Properties (GGP), the Chicago-based real estate investment trust that recently purchased Rouse. The Shops was the developer's featured project, says Bob Rubenkoning, who is vice president and communications director for GGP.

Also under development at the intersection of Interstate 10 and Loop 1604 is The Rim, a 1.5 million-square-foot lifestyle center being developed by Atlanta-based Thomas Enterprises. This is the second year that Thomas has showcased The Rim. But last year, all the developer could unveil was the potential for a mixed-use project that would ultimately span as much as 700 acres.

And despite continued buzz over the past year about a major outdoors sports retailer coming to The Rim, it was only at this year's ICSC conference that the retailer's name could be spoken: Bass Pro Outdoor World -- to be developed by Springfield, Mo.-based Bass Pro Shops.

A year ago, many real estate insiders in San Antonio were still wondering what would become of the site that was once Central Park Mall. This year, local developer Mark Granados was using his booth to showcase his plans for the site -- a project known as Park North Plaza.

The place to be
"There are quite a few projects here from San Antonio," says Granados, who is the principal of Hill-Granados Retail Partners LP.

As for his own project, Granados says that he is about 90 to 120 days away from announcing the first major tenants for Park North, which is slated to bring 1.2 million square feet of retail to the site of the former Central Park Mall at Loop 410 and San Pedro Avenue in North Central San Antonio.

Initial plans call for a movie theater that will be built on top of a five-story garage in the middle of the project. Two discount retailers have also approved the site for new stores.

While Granados is not mentioning specifics at this point, the talk has been that the movie theater tenant will be Kansas City, Mo.-based AMC Entertainment Inc. As for the discounters, Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart Corp. and Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears Corp. are names that continue to come up -- with the latter expected to build a Sears Grand store.

"I will not confirm or deny anything at this point," says Granados, when asked about these particular tenants. "I will say that we are working on long-term plans for Sears and Wal-Mart on the site."

Should Sears Grand take its place within the project, Park North could be one of the first retail projects to bring this superstore concept to San Antonio. Ranging in size from 151,000 to 210,000 square feet, the Sears Grand stores sell everything from refrigerators to milk.

The trick has not been to find interested tenants, as Park North has caught the eyes of several retailers, banks, institutional investors, even other developers, Granados says. The challenge, he adds, has been to come up with the master plan for how all of the pieces of the project will fit together.

As for the attention the project has garnered, he says he never expected anything less.

"Nothing compares to it," says Granados of Park North. "This is the place to be."

The same could be said for San Antonio in general, according to retail industry officials.

"San Antonio has gotten people's attention," says Jerry Anderson of Thomas Enterprises. And while he would love to give all of the credit to his own project, The Rim, Anderson knows that there is a lot more to this success story.

His own project, however, has netted some other tenants to join Bass Pro -- including new stores by Plano-based J.C. Penney Co. Inc. and Wilkesboro, N.C.-based Lowe's. Right in the middle of the project, Thomas Enterprises is planning to develop a hotel.

"There are so many neat things going on (in San Antonio)," Anderson says. "It's on people's radar screens."

"Our retail and restaurant partners are thrilled about the growth in San Antonio," adds Rubenkoning. "And the retailers make us excited."

Competitive synergy
When the first phase of The Shops opens this September, it will bring with it 30 stores that will be new to the local retail landscape. Besides the jeweler with its signature blue box (Tiffany's), noted fashion retailers like Hugo Boss, Lacoste and Tommy Bahama are also coming to town. To date, the first phase of The Shops, a total of 1 million square feet, is about 93 percent occupied, Rubenkoning says.

And GGP is already hard at work marketing phase two of the center -- 300,000 square feet that will include another new movie theater by AMC and a mix of retail and office tenants.

GGP is also in the midst of a multimillion-dollar renovation of North Star Mall at Loop 410 and McCullough Avenue -- further evidence of the corporation's bullish stance on San Antonio, Rubenkoning says.

"These projects create synergy for our partners," Rubenkoning adds. "Between the two, we can create a competitive edge for our retailers and restaurants."

And further surprises are still in store for the Alamo City.

In February, Cincinnati-based Federated Department Stores Inc. and The May Department Stores Co., which is headquartered in St. Louis, announced plans to merge. As part of the deal, Federated has stated that it will likely convert its existing May's department store brands -- which include Foley's -- into its Macy's brand.

But what happens when you have both a Foley's and a Macy's department store in the same shopping center, like at North Star Mall?

Rubenkoning answers coyly, "Federated thinks highly of North Star. I expect we'll see another of its brands coming to the market."
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  #51  
Old Posted May 31, 2005, 2:21 PM
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More San Antonio-related 'snippets' from the Texas Real Estate Center's semi-weekly RECON report:
------------------------

REGAL HILLS COMPETES WITH THE RIM AND THE SHOPS AT LA CANTERA

SAN ANTONIO (MySanAntonio.com) – Galleria Ventures Ltd. has given the northernmost 100 acres of a 400-acre tract at Loop 1604 and I-10 to Turnberry Associates to build a one million-square-foot retail palace dubbed Regal Hills. Galleria will receive partnership in Turnberry in exchange for the acreage. Galleria plans to build houses and commercial buildings on the remaining 300 acres.

Construction is slated to begin in summer or early fall this year. Regal Hills could open by fall 2006. Turnberry officials said they are finalizing leases with tenants for the center, which is the third to be developed at the intersection.

The Shops at La Cantera will open later this year with 1.2 million square feet. The Rim, which is immediately north of Regal Hills, is under construction with one million square feet of retail and diversions.


http://www.turnberry.com/r_regalhills.htm

------------------------------

RABA BUYS RIVERWALK SITES FOR MIXED-USE CONVERSION

SAN ANTONIO (GlobeSt.com) – Local architect Larry Raba has purchased three historic Riverwalk structures totaling 1.3 acres for a $67 million, mixed-use conversion. The Piazza San Lorenzo redevelopment will include 17,000 square feet of riverside restaurants, 30,600 square feet of piazza-level boutique retail, 37,500 square feet of office space, 25 condominiums for purchase and 47 two- and three-bedroom fractional ownership units.

With the site secured, officials said that the condo reservations will become sales and the letters of intent will turn into leases. Piazza San Lorenzo has 315 feet of Riverwalk bank frontage. The three buildings that were purchased for the project include the Book Building at 140 E. Houston St., the Clegg Building at 130 Soledad St. and the Solo Serve Building at 114 Soledad St.

Prices for the condos, which average 2,800 square feet, hover between $300 to $350 per square foot. Local builder Bartlett Cocke will be the general contractor. The Solo Serve Building will be demolished and developers will construct the residential portion of the development on the site, including eight stories on the Riverwalk side and 11 stories on the Soledad St. side. Construction is projected to begin in September with developers eyeing completion in first quarter 2007.
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  #52  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2005, 12:40 AM
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Why all this outdoor stuff, what are the benefits to these types of developments, besides maybe cost for the developer?
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  #53  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2005, 2:41 AM
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I've heard through the vine thatone of if not the main tenant for Regal Hills will be IKEA.
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  #54  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2005, 4:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaga185
Why all this outdoor stuff, what are the benefits to these types of developments, besides maybe cost for the developer?
These outdoor "lifestyle" retail centers are all the rage right now, across the country. They come in various shapes and forms (including 'downtown' centers, etc), but they generally contain the same type of lifestyle-oriented retailers (The Gap, Barnes and Noble, Movie Theaters, etc.). You now see a lot of major mall developers (Simon, etc.) building these outdoor centers in lieu of traditional indoor malls.
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  #55  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2005, 7:11 AM
texboy texboy is offline
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Personally I like shopping outdoors especially in San Antonio. Instead of saving shopping for a rainy day, bc I don't like to be inside on a nice day, I can go shopping pretty much anyday and not have to be in a cramped mall. Thats just me personally. The Shops at La Cantera have really nice overhangs in front of the stores so it makes it even EASIER for me to go shopping, still be in the shade, but still be outdoors!
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  #56  
Old Posted Jun 2, 2005, 3:22 AM
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I just have no preference I guess, I like all kinds of malls.
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  #57  
Old Posted Jun 2, 2005, 10:23 PM
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Ok so I had a day off from work so I decided to take a little trip through San Antonio and Take some pictures of a few things that may be of interest to some people on this forum! Keep in mind I am an amateur at photography so just bare through some of the less than great pics! Enjoy!

Lets start out with The Shops at La Cantera. I had a hard time getting a good angle but here is a glimpse of the mall.









OK, onto downtown. Traffic on 10 was AWEFUL thanks to construction but I got there.



So my first stop on the tour was the Hotel Contessa.









Just a walk down the street and I was at the site of the new Hyatt Convention Center Hotel. The existing garage has been closed and should be demolished within the next few weeks and the city of San Antonio will vacate the lower offices withing the next week.

This is the "hole" where the new hotel will stand.



Looking into the window of the office on the first floor of the garage. Its a beautiful scale model of the current convention center. Wish they had one with the hotel in it! You can see exactly where the new hotel will sit. The footprint is exactly where the garage is.




The garage to be demolished


La Cascada on the south end of Downtown.





Random Pics.



This is a VERY popular upscale club/lounge in DT San Antonio called Club Rive.


The Valencia Hotel Center.


Need I say more?




Last edited by texboy; Jun 3, 2005 at 2:11 PM.
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  #58  
Old Posted Jun 3, 2005, 12:36 AM
sanantoniorocks21 sanantoniorocks21 is offline
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Cool. Do you have a high-res version, say 1024x768, of the pic with the Weston Centre and Crown Plaza in it?
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  #59  
Old Posted Jun 3, 2005, 12:51 AM
texboy texboy is offline
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No I don't. Sorry bout that.
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  #60  
Old Posted Jun 5, 2005, 4:14 AM
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Nice pics Texito.
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