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FORT WORTH-Staking its first claim west of Dallas, Sam Moon Trading Co. is buying buy 20 acres from Trademark Property Co. and Hillwood to build a 150,000-sf signature center as part of an ongoing expansion by the well-known importer to develop other destination shopping meccas just like he’s done in the “Big D.”

The Alliance Town Center site will be Sam Moon’s third location in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. The discounter also has a shop in Garden Grove, CA and one under construction in the Woodlands near Houston. The first wave of stores for the 600,000-sf first phase of the 300-acre Alliance Town Center will open in fall 2006. Sam Moon will anchor a second wave of deliveries planned for spring 2007.

About a month ago, the Hillwood-Trademark JV announced a lease with JCPenney Co. Inc. for a 98,000-sf anchor spot. Negotiations also are under way with another anchor, several junior anchors and shop tenants for next year’s deliveries. Future phases call for a grocery-anchored center and Main Street component with specialty retail and residential combo buildings, all positioned within 12 minutes of 40,000 single-family lots, both developed and platted.

In a press release, Sam Moon says he realized many customers were traveling from Tarrant County to shop in the Dallas stores. “This Alliance Town Center location will not only allow us to be closer to some of our existing customers,” he continues, “but to develop a deeper customer base in the western part of the North Texas region.”

The Sam Moon stores, which attract shoppers by the busloads, sell handbags, fashion accessories, luggage and gifts–brand name and off-brand at steep discounts. The Alliance site is located along the east side of Interstate 35W between Heritage Trace and North Tarrant parkways. In keeping with his MO, Sam Moon will develop a center carved into individual shop space for his inventory categories. The handbag-accessories store will have more than 15,000 sf of showroom space, the same size as the chain’s flagship store at 11826 Harry Hines Blvd. in North Dallas.

“Attracting a popular retailer such as Sam Moon Trading Co. is another example of the tremendous leasing activity that is taking place in the Alliance area,” says Terry Montesi, Trademark’s president and CEO. “We expect to have roughly one million sf of retail on our site by the end of 2007.” At build-out, the village-style town center will have more than two million sf of retail, office, residential and entertainment space. It also will include a 60-acre medical campus. The Fort Worth-based JV has Stan Lottridge and Aaron Ashmore of United Commercial Realty/ChainLinks preleasing Alliance Town Center.

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