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(For more retail coverage, click GlobeSt.com/RETAIL and the multifamily market, click here.)

RICHARDSON, TX-With nearly two years invested into the planning, Legacy Partners Residential Development Inc. has taken down a 4.3-acre tract at the heart of Galatyn Park. Construction will begin Jan. 2 on 285 apartments and about 6,000 sf of Main Street-style retail.

The Foster City, CA-based Legacy and New York City equity partner, BlackRock Realty Inc., plan to begin delivering the Venue in spring 2008. Completion is eyed for late 2008. The musical/theatrical design theme plays off its front row-seat location to the city’s Charles W. Eisemann Center for the Performing Arts.

“It has taken awhile to get the project designed and permitted,” Spencer Stuart, Legacy’s senior vice president and partner, tells GlobeSt.com. “We are very enthusiastic about this project and we think it’s one of the best infill sites in the city. It will be a well-received apartment complex.” The design process has resulted in seven more apartments and roughly a 1,000-sf reduction in the retail component. The all-in development cost hovers $34 million.

The Venue will sit at 2301 Performance Dr., right across the street from regional headquarters office of Calabasas, CA-based Countrywide Financial Corp. and less than a mile from the one-million-sf regional campus for Blue Cross/Blue Shield, which also is slated to begin rising in January. “We have a lot of potential renters in both of those,” Stuart points out. The land also is just 500 feet from DART’s Galatyn Park light-rail station, fronts the Renaissance Richardson Hotel and abuts an empty eight-acre tract that the seller, Galatyn Park Corp., has earmarked for more office and retail space in the city’s 500-acre centerpiece.

The Venue, designed by locally based Humphreys & Partners Architects LP, will be a mix of four- and five-story buildings with a pre-cast structured parking garage. Units will range from 634 sf to 1,860 sf. The average monthly rent will be $1,345. Milestone Management of Dallas will oversee the finished product. Andres Construction Services of Dallas is the general contractor. Guaranty Bank provided construction capital.

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