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DALLAS-With three years invested into the planning, Provident Realty Advisors Inc. and Red Sea Group are ready to roll out the live-work-play formula for a prized 42-acre infill tract. To keep up with the neighborhood, the Glen at Preston Hollow will have a $300-million to $400-million build-out value.

“It took three years for the site to tell us what it wants to be,” Avner Papouchado, president of the Los Angeles-based Red Sea Group, tells GlobeSt.com. The formula is a euro-urban plan at the intersection of North Central Expressway and Walnut Hill Lane, with a first phase of 400 apartments, 100,000 sf to 125,000 sf of retail, a 100,000-sf office building and 100 zero lot-line houses in a 17-acre gated setting.

Before the building can begin, the site has to be scraped of 857 apartments and a 50,000-sf shopping center. The construction schedule calls for demolition to be done by spring so infrastructure work can get under way. If the schedule stays on track, the first phase will be going vertical in late summer or early fall and delivering in late spring or early summer 2010.

Papouchado used to live near the development site; Provident Realty’s founder and president Leon Backes still does. “We wanted to do this right. We wanted to make sure the pieces really work well together,” Backes says. “We wanted to create a place, a village green for the neighborhood, a center that Preston Hollow has never had before.”

The developers say the Glen at Preston Hollow went through hundreds of design revisions. The end result is a conceptual plan that “feels right from a place-making perspective, a circulating perspective and a place where people will want to dine there, work there and live there,” Backes assesses.

The Glen at Preston Hollow draws on what the developers saw as the best elements in projects like Country Club Plaza in Kansas City, MO, West Village and Victory in Dallas, Kierland Commons in Scottsdale, AZ and the Grove in Los Angeles. The Preston Hollow development will have three acres of green space, with nearly one acre set aside for a central plaza.

“We are using the open space as a transitional element,” explains J. Scott Rodgers, development director for the Glen. The green space and two courtyard buildings will screen the project’s urban core from the single-family development site.

The 100,000-sf, six-story office building will sit front and center at the corner of North Central Expressway and Walnut Hill Lane. Talks have begun with two financial institutions for one of them to become the lead tenant with their regional headquarters. Bill Knopick of WLK Interests in Dallas is preleasing the office component.

The retail mix will be high-end restaurants and boutique shops. Christopher Thomas and Ross Golman with Dallas-based Retail Connection and Lisa Streidl with Blatteis & Schnur, also in Dallas, are preleasing the retail space.

The Glen at Preston Hollow’s subsequent phases will be demand-driven. At completion, there will be 175,000 sf of retail and up to 1,100 multifamily units in varied mixes, including a high-end senior housing project tailored to the long-time residents who want to sell their homes, but not leave the neighborhood. “We want to create upscale alternative housing choices,” Backes says, adding condos could come on line if the market is there. And if demand is there, a hotel could rise as well.

Dallas-based WDG Architects’ principal Vince Hunter designed the Glen with iconic Mediterranean and Spanish Colonial architecture with muted green tile roofs instead of the more common red tile. The landscape architect is Kevin Sloan Studio of Dallas and the single-family architect was Fusch-Serold & Partners Inc., also from Dallas.

The footprint for Glen at Preston Hollow was bought in an off-market deal in a 45-day rescue from a Chicago-based fund to stave off a foreclosure. Red Sea Group’s executive vice president Mitchell Kralis’ coup reeled in the last large tract available for residential and retail development in the area. The rezoning process took one year to achieve.

The Glen at Preston Hollow is planned to withstand the test of time. “We want to make a place that will mix people together, a center where you go and spend some time, not go in, shop and go away,” says Papouchado, who’s put in dibs for a residential unit for himself. “This is a place to mingle. It’s built to accommodate everyday life. And, it’s important to us and everybody to put people closer to where they work and live to reduce carbon footprints.”

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