HOUSTON – (Realty News Report) – After surviving Hurricane Harvey, and with two years of major renovations complete, Dart Interests is relaunching the Republic Square development in Houston’s Energy Corridor.
Republic Square, which sits on 35 acres facing Interstate 10, formerly served as the headquarters of Exxon Chemical.
Dart Interests , formerly known as Third Palm Capital, is has signed new tenants for the development’s long, low-rise office building, which provides low-density workspace.
Third Palm had ambitious plans for the campus, which is on the south side of I-10 and just north of Memorial Drive and Buffalo Bayou.
The Dart/Third Palm organization acquired the property almost seven years ago as Exxon Mobil developed a new campus in Springwoods Village in North Harris County.
Third Palm, which paid over $70 million for the property, had ambitious plans for the campus, which is on the south side of I-10 and just north of Buffalo Bayou. The original plan envisioned a mixed-use project will include 2.6 million square feet of office space, 100,000 square-feet of retail and restaurant space, two hotels and 800 multifamily residential units.
Oil Crash Hit Energy Corridor
The oil crash – which began with a notorious Thanksgiving Day OPEC meeting in 2014, altered the entire landscape. The Energy Corridor, which had office occupancy over 95 percent, suddenly had a glut of space.
The immediate plan for Republic Square is not as ambitious but it has adapted to today’s market.
The 320,000 SF, four-story building, does not require long rides in crowded elevators. And its massive floorplates are ideal for the Post-Covid era.
“What makes Republic Square particularly appealing are its large floor plates that allow for ease of social distancing given multiple entry points, exceptionally wide hallways, ease of floor access without elevator reliance, as well as an expanse of functional outdoor areas ranging from interior courtyards to a shaded lakeside trail system,” said Randall Tuller, Senior Vice President for Dart Interests.
Last year, Dart/Third Palm retained NAI Partners to lease the space and provide onsite management. Even as the coronavirus damaged Houston’s office market, a number of new tenants have been announced, including GATE Energy, Sparkhound and Samsung.
The redevelopment of Republic Square has been extensive.
The 35-acre campus, located at 13501 Katy Freeway with direct access to Terry Hershey Park, has been “completely reimagined,” Dart said.
The initiative has modernized and optimized its public spaces, elevated systems to state of the art and incorporated premier tenant amenities – all while preserving the signature architectural aspects of the structure. Planning and design have been provided by Huitt-Zollars with Basic Builders acting as general contractor.
“The decision to treat the building as a long-term campus asset and spend commensurately to bring it to its full potential has proven fortuitous,” Dart said. With COVID putting new demands on leasing, tenant interest in Republic Square has significantly increased due to its low-density design, both short and long-term leasing options, access to major thoroughfares and popular commercial and residential areas, plus the orientation of offices to the natural setting.
The 35-acre campus, located at 13501 Katy Freeway with direct access to Terry Hershey Park, has been completely reimagined as one of the city’s most dynamic, and arguably one of its most unique, work environments. At the heart of the capital investment is its namesake, four-story and 320,000-square-foot office building with integrated garages. The initiative has modernized and optimized its public spaces, elevated systems to state of the art and incorporated premier tenant amenities – all while preserving the signature architectural aspects of the structure. Planning and design have been provided by Huitt-Zollars with Basic Builders acting as GC.
The decision to treat the building as a long-term campus asset and spend commensurately to bring it to its full potential has proven fortuitous. With COVID putting new demands on leasing, tenant interest in Republic Square has significantly increased due to its low-density design, both short and long-term leasing options, access to major thoroughfares and popular commercial and residential areas, plus the orientation of offices to the natural beauty of the setting, just west of Eldridge Road.
Samsung Leases Space
Samsung recently leased a 3,974-square-foot space and was represented by Nichole Thalji with LUXE Executive Group. Digital consulting services firm Sparkhound, which also has offices in Dallas, Baton Rouge and Birmingham, anticipates a September move-in at Republic Square. Noah Kruger with Savills represented the tenant in the 4,533-square-foot transaction. GATE Energy has executed a 24,302-square-foot lease with a targeted commencement of November and was represented by Alex Taghi of NAI Partners. Republic Square will serve as the new Houston headquarters for the GATE companies that provide scalable, fit-for-purpose services for the energy sector including project delivery, engineering, commissioning, field services, operations and staffing services. Jacob Aldridge and Michael Sieger with NAI Partners represented Dart Interests in all transactions.
Over the course of renovations, all building mechanical systems such as HVAC, electrical and plumbing system have been replaced, restrooms were renovated to the studs, the lake and trail systems have been reconstructed and garages completely refurbished, introducing sensor lighting. Newly completed improvements include a fully-renovated main lobby with signature lighting elements, upgrades to 20,000 square feet of executive space, an overhaul of perimeter and courtyard landscaping and the addition of a conference room, training facility and a premium fitness center incorporating spa-like locker rooms with showers.
Among the projects underway are the implementation of a new wayfinding program designed by Houston-based creative shop Formation and the build-out of second and third floor spec suites and collaborative areas. With the first floor primarily geared to smaller tenants, the upper two office floors can accommodate tenants up to 120,000 square feet.
Dart Interests has over $1 billion in assets including investments in New York, California, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Washington, D.C. and Texas.
Sept. 9. 2020 Realty News Report Copyright 2020
File: Dart Relaunches Republic Square
File: Third Palm Capital, Exxon Chemical, Energy Corridor. Dart Relaunches Republic Square.
Caption: Campus has frontage on Interstate 10 and Memorial Drive.