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Dirt will be flying this week at the Turtle Creek Blvd. site of Dallas’ newest condominium project, an $85 million undertaking with a built-in opulence that developers say is unparalleled in the city’s high-rise living.

Sixty-five of the 119 units of The Vendome already have been sold at a cost of $350 per sf, John Conroy, partner in the Metropolitan Group, told GlobeSt.com. He says the owners, whose identities are being withheld, represent the well-heeled elite of North Texas – from Gen Y to the metroplex’s old guard. What each is getting for the money is an unobstructed view of downtown on a site that the developer says is the last of the “best sites in town.” The construction start is falling two weeks after an official groundbreaking ceremony.

“There’s a lot of money in Dallas, both old and new, so we decided to tap it,” Conroy says of Metropolitan’s October purchase of 2.1 acres at the intersection of Turtle Creek Blvd. and Lemmon Ave. Conroy won’t disclose the end price paid to owner Michael Block, but did say it was “north of $6 million.”

Conroy and his partner, Jonathan Breene, are buying a condo so Metropolitan can have a presence in Dallas, where they plan to develop other properties. In a world of closely guarded deals, Conroy is mum about Metropolitan’s future in the metroplex, but freely talks about The Vendome, a project that had started and stopped until Metropolitan stepped into the picture.”We’re really going all out,” he says, adding that there isn’t anything the “smart” building is lacking. “We have maxed out that site.” The project’s goal: European-level services and Texas-size spaces with all the features of the most upscale NYC condominiums.

Nearly every condo has a view of Dallas’ downtown, boasts Conroy. The units, ranging in size from 3,400 net sf to 4,200 net sf, and 12 penthouses, each 8,000 net sf, will be serviced by private elevators. The classical French structure totals 350,000 net sf plus 200,000 sf of 24-hour valet parking. Alyo of NYC is the design architect and Gromatzky-Dupree Architects of Dallas is the architect of record. Manhattan Construction Co. of Dallas is the general contractor.

David Jenkins, Metropolitan’s head of construction, is in the process of soliciting proposals from five major high-tech providers. The successful bidder will be wiring the structure for a premium fiber-optic telefony service that goes from intranet to television to everything in between.

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