News & Events in Arlington, TX

Here’s an update on the latest news and events taking place in Arlington, Texas:

Expansions/Relocations

Alpha Furniture LLC: Inked a lease to relocate to 60,000 sf of expanded space in Arlington. Alpha leased the industrial space at 3715 East Avenue E. in Arlington and will relocate from its current 40,000‐sf location on nearby Avenue R. Alpha Furniture has five retail outlets and an online retail business that all service from its Arlington facility.

L‐3 Communications Corp: Leased 14,505 square feet in the Directors Square complex in Arlington, TX. The contractor will take occupancy in October at 711 Directors Drive, a single‐story, 25,308‐square‐foot office building constructed in 1976.

Fish & Wildlife: A lease was awarded at 1950 N.E. Green Oaks. The project will have a total of 6,000 SF and bring 15‐20 new jobs to Arlington.

Developments

TCC’s Science and Academic Building: Construction has begun on a three‐story, 120,000‐sf Science and Academic Building for Tarrant County College (TCC). Once complete in late 2010, the building will have a 150–200 student lecture hall, student gathering areas, general purpose classrooms, back‐to‐back teaching science laboratories, a common prep area that will be shared by all teaching groups, and a three‐story atrium. The building is aiming for LEED Gold certification.

Texas Masonic Retirement Center: Construction is rolling again on a .3 million apartment building in central Arlington. The center, at 1501 W. Division St., has a nursing center, independent‐living quarters and 12 two‐bedroom duplexes. It is for members of the Texas Masonic fraternity, Masonic‐related organizations and widows of Masons. The 55,000‐square‐foot, five‐story building was one of several projects that Carrollton‐based contractor Hisaw & Associates stopped work on in late April, citing financial problems.

Oakridge School: Arlington’s Oakridge school recently closed on a 2.5‐acre tract of land along Pioneer Parkway. Oakridge bought the property, which is directly in the middle of its planned 50‐acre athletic campus across from the school’s campus at 5900 West Pioneer Parkway. The school also picked up a four‐acre tract to its west, a site that was once home to the Arlington Animal Services Center. Oakridge paid nearly ,000 for the shuttered property, which includes five buildings.

Texas Appliance & Builders Supply: The company will double its showroom space when it expands beyond its longtime Pioneer Parkway store to a second location alog Interstate 20 in southeast Arlington in October. The company has bought the former Park Row Lighting showroom and warehouse at 1500 East I‐20. The sale included the 41,224‐square‐foot building and the 4.6 acres. About 15,000 square feet of the building will be used for a showroom, with the remainder for warehouse, distribution and the company’s offices. Texas Appliance will continue to operate its 15,000‐square‐foot showroom at 3401 W. Pioneer Parkway. As many as eight employees will be hired for the I‐20 location, which is expected to open in mid‐October.

Mandola’s Italian Market: Chili’s founder Larry Lavine will open Mandola’s Italian Market in South Arlington in North Texas this November. Mandola and a team of private investors will sink about $2 million into the lease and renovation of a former Bravo Italian restaurant in 7,300 square feet at the Arlington Highlands shpping center, just east of The Parks at Arlington Mall.
The concept will be an Italian market that sells items such as cheese, bread, meat and gelato.The Arlington location will employ about 65 people.

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop: Fuzzy’s, a casual Mexican food restaurant, leased 3,700 square feet of retail space in Stanton Plaza, a shopping center located at 4201 W. Green Oaks Blvd., for its second Arlington location. The new Arlington location should open during the first quarter of 2010.

Mijo’s: The popular Pantego Mexican restaurant plans to open an additional location at 207 N. Center St. across from Arlington Music Hall before the end of the year. Mijo’s will offer the same dishes as its west Park Row Drive location, but will also feature a taco bar where patrons can build their own crispy or soft tacos.

Kia Dealership: Dallas car dealer Clay Cooley purchased the property and buildings of the former Classic Kia car dealership at 1500 Interstate20 in Arlington. The facility includes an 11,242‐sf showroom, a 7,369‐sf office, a 8,369‐sf parts department and a 37,301‐sf service area. Cooley owns a Buick, Pontiac, GMC dealership and a Suzuki dealership in Dallas.

Other News

The council approved giving Plains Capital Bank $96,000 to assist with the asbestos abatement costs to demolish properties at 701 E. Rogers St. and 808 N. Collins St.

US Bowling Congress: The $2.5 million International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame opens in January. The 18,000‐square‐foot museum and hall of fame, which is moving here from St. Louis, will be at 621 Six Flags Drive in the city’s entertainment district. It will house bowling artifacts and interactive exhibits featuring highlights of the game’s 5,000‐year history, its popularity in America and around the world, and the top players.

Reps 1 USA Inc.: Leased 15,390 square feet of industrial space at 1118 Harris Road in Arlington from Jason Industries Inc.

Fratto Engineering Inc.: An established MEP firm, signed 5,403‐square‐foot lease at 2201 N. Collins in Arlington.

Arlington airport: A new $4.5 million terminal building at the Arlington Municipal Airport has been approved. The Arlington City Council approved issuing $8.86 million in certificates of obligation, part of which will pay for a new terminal at the airport. The two‐story, 11,000‐sf terminal is expected to open before the 2011 Super Bowl at Cowboys Stadium.
Arlington has been ranked no. 6 in the top ten affordable U.S. housing markets by Coldwell Banker. The data reflect average sales price for a 2,200‐sf single‐family home with four bedrooms and two‐and‐one‐half baths.

Downtown Arlington Management Corp: Maggie Campbell, president of the Downtown Arlington Management Corp., has announced her resignation. Hired in 2006 to implement the city’s downtown vision, Campbell is credited with helping attract investors and entertainment venues, including the Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts, Fuzzy’s Taco Shop and Babe’s Chicken Dinner House. Campbell will stay until Oct. 23 and then become president and CEO of the Downtown St. Louis Partnership.

UTA: The UT Arlington College of Education and Health Professions announced that it has received a $275,000 grant from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to begin the UT Arlington and Arlington ISD College Readiness rogram to prepare first‐generation minority students for postsecondary education.