AUSTIN-Wanting a bigger piece of the action, two Trammell Crow Co. veterans are joining another real estate veteran in an independent company. Charlie Northington and Kelly Shaw, Trammell Crow vice presidents who specialized in retail, opened shop this week with Scott Deskins at SCC Development Co.

The company will work in Central Texas and around the country, Northington tells It is developing projects in Bastrop and Temple. A project that Deskins has working is a 500,000-sf retail center in a Kalispell, MT ski resort, boasting a Target, Home Depot and Bon Marche. The firm represents Home Depot, Target and Wisconsin-based Kohl’s and will find places for them in Central Texas, Northington says.

Deskins, Shaw and he have been friends for a long time, Northington says, so it made sense to join Deskins’ firm. Why go independent? “Mainly because we wanted to get into an environment where we could control and own real estate ourselves,” Northington says. “We can’t do that at Trammell Crow. You can only develop for the company. You can’t really ever establish long-term capital positions like you can if you own them yourself.”

They also want to take advantage of the drop-off in the market. “We wanted to do it because we felt the market is going to be downturning,” he says, “and there’s going to be a lot of opportunities to take advantage of if you’ve got capital.”

Their projects include one in Bastrop, which is anchored by a Home Depot and includes a Chili’s restaurant; a restaurant court in Temple, with Chili’s, McDonalds and International House of Pancakes; and one in Mesquite, where the anchors haven’t been determined.

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