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DALLAS-Construction kicks off in the fall on two more Staples superstores in the Dallas-Ft. Worth metroplex. The Framingham, MA-based Staples Inc. is into its second year of rolling out multiple locations in a face-off with big-box competitors Office Max and Office Depot.

Before all is said and done, Staples will have 25 locations in North Texas, many of which are or will be in its competitors’ playing field. Long-term leases recently were inked for the 450,000-sf, 30-acre Gateway Station, due to break ground in 30 days in the suburb of Burleson, and the under-construction, 23,942-sf North Richland Hills Mall. Each Staples project totals 23,942 sf.

The Gateway Station store will be an in-line shop that opens in summer 2002, says Jennifer Frank of Ft. Worth-based Woodmont Co. The North Richland Hills will be a free-standing store that also opens in summer 2002.

The Gateway Station and North Richland Hills openings are part of a Staples’ strategy to launch multi-store openings as it did in early 2000 with the rollout of six locations. The office supply retailer also has stores under construction in North Dallas at the 220,000-sf Pavilion at Coit and Campbell and Ft. Worth’s Cityview retail power center at the intersection of Bryant Irvin Road and Interstate 20. Six more store locations, says Frank, are under contract in the DFW region. By summer 2002, 19 of the planned 25 DFW locations could be up and running.

“There are no plans to go to any other markets as of now,” Frank tells GlobeSt.com. For the present, Staples is content to “out position our competitors” in North Texas, she adds.The Burleson and Ft. Worth leases come within two months of the construction start of a 23,942-sf superstore along Loop 250 in Midland. The retailer holds a 15-year lease for that site, which delivers in February 2002. Frank and Greg Rabin, both Woodmont senior vice presidents, represent Staples in its Texas rollout.

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