Breach of Trust
Apparently, Mayor Mike has forgotten what he promised back on June 29, 2011 when he uttered those words, heard below in the video. This new development/agreement between Lucy Crow Billingsley, Chief Energy’s Trevor Rees Jones, and Mike Rawlings seem to have a heavy touch of a Preston Hollow elitist attitude. This development is putting future Dallas residents literally next door to Chief Energy’s pad site along with compressors. As the mayor likes to say in other situations, ‘it’s just business’.
Based on what we see, the rest of Dallas doesn’t matter and we just need to shut the hell up and move on down the road.
Like that’s going to happen………
Billingsley starts work on ambitious Dallas rental development
Cypress Waters may turn out to be North Texas’ biggest rental home community yet.
Developer Billingsley Co. has started construction on the 1,000-acre development, with the first 673 apartments expected to be ready by early 2013.
Eventually, thousands of residences, mostly apartments, will be built on the north side of LBJ Freeway facing North Lake.
“We have the potential to build 10,000 units here, so we needed to start this project in a major way,” developer Lucy Billingsley said. “Our hope and dream is we build a master-planned rental living community.”
The project has been a long time in the making.
Billingsley bought the property surrounding North Lake almost eight years ago from utility companies. During the 1950s, the reservoir was built by Dallas Power and Light Co. to provide cooling for its electric plant on Belt Line Road.
Decades later, the property, surrounded by Irving and Coppell but in Dallas’ city limits, was developed for recreation, with parks, fishing and boating.
“This is where everyone went for years to water ski,” Billingsley said. “And my kids used to practice running for track meets out there.”
In 2004, the electric utilities agreed to sell the property to Billingsley, who began planning to develop it.
The surrounding suburbs initially opposed the project and sued to stop construction.
But in 2008, the builder and city governments settled their differences. Since then, Billingsley Co. has been working to plan the property and design the first rental units.
Close to work, roads
“This is one of the largest in-fill development sites in America,” Billingsley said. “It is a site close to tremendous employment, freeways and great neighborhoods.
“In the first phase, we are building three different neighborhoods,” she said.
Designed by WDG Architecture, the buildings will range from high-end townhouse-style units to contemporary Texas-themed designs.
Each project will have a different feel and will tie in with walking trails and other features, including resort-style swimming pools, project manager Tom Holland said.
“It’s all about creating neighborhoods and not self-contained complexes,” he said.
The developer has land set aside for retail, restaurants and the like.
“We have 82 acres on LBJ Freeway that we have saved at the project’s primary entry point so that we can have retail to service the development,” Billingsley said. “We will also have restaurants on the lake.”
North Lake, which is filled with water acquired from local water districts, will be reduced to about 300 acres. The old power plant at the north end of the reservoir is being removed.
Billingsley said the quality of rental projects has gone up as residents who previously would have purchased a home opt to rent instead.
“In today’s world, with the American dream changing and our lifestyles changing, we want to have a nice home but not necessarily own it,” she said.
“We think this is a long-term trend.”
Cypress Waters is one of the largest rental projects planned for North Texas since the construction of the 337-acre Village apartment development in Dallas. Started in the 1960s, the Village now has more than 7,300 rental units.
Greg Willett, vice president of Carrollton-based apartment analyst MPF Research, said Cypress Waters’ first phase is the largest apartment project under construction in North Texas.
“There are only a handful of developments around the country” this large, he said. “Usually you can’t get a site that will accommodate something like that.
“And you have to have the staying power to do it over a decade or more — you can’t do it all at once.”
Billingsley has been working on its Austin Ranch project since 1999 and has built more 2,500 apartments in the 1,900-acre development in Carrollton and the Colony. “Another 550 units are now under construction in Austin Ranch,” Billingsley said. Along with the apartments, the sprawling land development includes offices, industrial and retail.
Billingsley plans to add to its new Cypress Waters development as quickly as possible.
“The question will be how fast can we grow,” Billingsley said. “We will start the development of the second phase at the end of the first — they will be rolling right into each other.”