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DALLAS-It’s time to start, says the newly hired senior vice president of development for Dallas-based Macfarlan Real Estate Services.

Don Epperson says the construction equipment’s been offloaded to begin the actual construction of a previously announced a 200,000-sf, class-A office tower on six acres in Las Colinas. “The cranes are there. They’ll start up first thing in the morning,” Epperson told GlobeSt.com in an interview late yesterday afternoon.

It’s the first undertaking for a joint venture of Macfarlan Realty Partners and RREEF America LLC. The seven-story Las Colinas Highlands represents the newest project to kick off in the tony Dallas suburb. The Corgan Associates-designed tower is being built at the intersection of Texas 114 and Texas 161.

But, the construction start also means it’s time for Epperson to focus on other projects in the Macfarlan pipeline. The new senior VP says the 2001 game plan is to plot out projects for 14 acres at MacArthur Boulevard and Texas 114 and 10 acres at Fortune Road and Texas 114, both in Las Colinas, plus a 42-acre holding at the intersection of Texas 190 and Campbell Road in the 209-acre Firewheel Technology Park, a Macfarlan joint venture with Trademark Cos.

First quarter 2001 will bring a sealed deal for one of the three land holdings or announcement of a new telecom hotel, Epperson told GlobeSt.com. Macfarlan presently is working on its first carrier hotel, a $70-million, 880,000-sf conversion of the former Fleming Foods warehouse at 2525 Minimax in Houston.

Several months ago, CEO Dean Macfarlan had initiated talks for the development of a one million-sf carrier hotel in North Dallas and a smaller one in San Antonio. The projects have yet to be announced.

“Soon, we’ll become a known developer in the teleco hotel market,” promises Epperson, who is a former principal of McCaslin Design & Construction of Dallas. Epperson is a 20-year veteran of commercial real estate development, asset management, building design and construction. He has directed national building programs for telecommunications and high-tech companies, becoming involved in more than $400 million and five million sf in US construction projects. As senior vice president of development, Epperson will oversee Macfarlan’s build-to-suit, speculative and design/build projects in Texas.

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