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For in-depth coverage of the retail portion of Perot’s vision, click GlobeSt.com/RETAIL.

DALLAS-In a bid to make Victory the Times Square of the West, Hillwood in coming weeks will break ground on a 26-story, mixed-use tower, the first in a series of new builds rolling out through year’s end. The “coming soon” news includes a 30,000-sf grocery store in yet another building to be unveiled right down the street.

Ross Perot Jr.’s vision for Victory is the coveted 24-hour destination that’s eluded Dallas on its road to cosmopolitan status. “More than anything, we’re trying to create a dramatic place,” says Jonas Woods, president of Hillwood Capital. Along with the real estate, the Hillwood-owned components will include a security force in adjunct with the Dallas Police Department, a development-wide concierge service for Perot’s “city within a city,” a media hub and a light-rail station, set to open this month and linking Victory, anchored by American Airlines Center, to the rest of the city.

“There will be nothing else like it short of Times Square,” David Hicks, senior vice president of office development for Hillwood, tells GlobeSt.com about the second phase of Victory’s construction, timed to deliver in third quarter 2006–in sync with the 32-story W Hotel & Residences, which in a few weeks will commence construction of a second residential tower with another 60 condos.

The Victory fast-track is making it difficult to keep up with the birthing of a bustling urban center designed not to detract from Downtown Dallas, but “to give our corporate city a tool to recruit the best and brightest,” Hicks says. Retail and residential are simultaneously rising rather than building rooftops and adding shopping space on the tail end in the march toward build-out of a 72-acre legacy, once a brownfield site on the CBD’s edge and now being marketed as Uptown.

To help speed development, Hillwood also recruited San Diego-based Fairfield Residential Inc. for a pair of eight-story, residential and retail towers and will be announcing “another notable multifamily developer” for the 26-story apartment building. “In the next 90 days, there will be eight cranes on the Dallas skyline in Victory,” says Hicks, a recent speaker at the monthly meeting of the apartment income brokers network jointly sponsored by Fidelity National Title and La Jolla Bank.

The most closely watched component in Victory’s second phase is the class AA office space. Hicks has spent most of this year courting Downtown and Uptown office tenants to snag a deal to jumpstart construction.

“We’re trying to gauge the market,” Perot told last week’s RealShare Dallas audience. “We’re still waiting for high-end anchor tenants. As soon as we get that, we’ll break ground.”

Victory is entitled for 10 million sf of development, of which four million sf will be office construction. Hicks’ chief assignment is getting a lead tenant for a 36-story building, possibly higher, with a seven-level parking component and a 120-unit residential top in the $500-per-sf range. The structure, with 350,000 sf of office space and 100,000 sf of retail, will be the first new office in the Downtown area in two decades, according to Hicks.

And, the green-building office design “will be the first multi-tenant office buildings to rise in the US and will feature 18-inch raised floors for power, data, voice and air delivery,” Hicks says. “The rental rates will be higher, but you’ll have lower energy costs. It’s the way to build right now. The long-term savings are there.”

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