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SAN ANTONIO-At the end of John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, Tom Joad makes a promise to people in trouble. “I’ll be there,” he vows. San Antonio’s NAI/Rohde Realty Co. is paraphrasing that promise this way: “Wherever there’s a Super Wal-Mart, we’ll be there.”

Rohde is developing shopping centers near six Super Wal-Marts in four Texas cities, according to Chuck Siegel, a Rohde partner and president of the firm. Four of them–two in San Antonio and one each in Dallas, Bastrop and Harlingen–are new centers and one in Brownsville is a renovation project.

The developments reflect a surge in activity by the San Antonio firm founded in 1908 by Alfred Rohde Sr. His son, Alfred Rohde Jr., 82, is still active in the firm, which is run by his son Tom Rohde.

The projects are 60,000 sf at Rigsby Road and Loop 410 and 46,000 sf at Culebra and Loop 1604, both in San Antonio; part of a 145-acre project in Bastrop; 60,000 at Interstate 30 and Buckner Road in Dallas; 33,000 sf in Harlingen at Highway 77 and Expressway 83. For the Buckner Commons story, click here

The newest project is in Brownsville, where Rohde is heading up the renovation of Resaca Village, a 1974-built center with 108,000 sf available, Siegel says. The center had been anchored by a Sam’s Discount Warehouse, but it moved across the road next to a Super Wal-Mart. Rohde is handling the project for the center’s owner, Ray Martin & Associates, based in San Antonio.

Siegel tells GlobeSt.com that the firm relies on Tom Rohde’s expertise and experience in finding the sites near Super Wal-Marts. “On these kinds of developments, it’s Tom’s knowledge and the fact that he has been in the development business,” Siegel says. “We’ve been able to know about the properties, put together the pieces and put these projects into investors hands, who we then do the leasing for.”

Siegel handles the leasing end and partner Bryan Ottmers heads up property management.”There is no one that has the ability to draw a value customer or a grocery shopper (than Super Wal-Mart does),” Siegel says.

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