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NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX-After a year of planning an expansion, ATI Enterprises has cleared the deck to light the 35,965-sf balance of a 75,039-sf former retail box. The career school operator will use the extra space to train automotive repair technicians.

Securing state approval to expand the course lineup is what kept the lease expansion on the drawing board practically since the operator moved into 6351 Grapevine Highway, a former Montgomery Ward store in the 300,000-sf, mixed-use Richland Business Center, says John Bowles with the John Bowles Co. in Dallas. He tells GlobeSt.com that finish-out will begin in a few days so the expansion area will be ready for classes in mid-November. “It’s a turnkey finish-out,” he says, adding the space came equipped with vehicle repair bays. Several million dollars in a shared purse between building owner and tenant will go into retooling and equipping the space, he says.

Bowles says ATI moved into the single-story building April 30, 2004, taking 39,074 sf with a 15-year lease and a plan to take over the balance after the automotive course won the state’s nod. The expansion lease runs co-terminus with the original pact, he adds.

Bowles and the firm’s director of brokerage services Ed Pachecano represented the Dallas-based career school, which has eight locations in Texas, Florida and Arizona. Building owner, Today Realty Advisors Inc., used an in-house broker to structure its terms.

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