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[IMGCAP(1)]ALLEN, TX-Dallas-based MGHerring Group will begin to bring its 1.4-million-sf Village at Allen out of the ground in 30 days. The developer has made its first general contracting award and plans to execute several more contracts in the coming weeks.

Cadence McShane Corp. of Dallas has been given the nod to start work on five buildings totaling 153,014 sf. Site work began nearly 10 months ago as the developer readied the land for side-by-side regional centers, a roadmap for an estimated $1-billion collection of retail, residential, hospitality and office space along Stacy Road and US Hwy. 75 in the metroplex’s northern tier. Vertical work already is under way on the 1.4-million-sf Village at Fairview.

Gar Herring, MGHerring’s president, tells GlobeSt.com that both projects’ first phases will be ready to open in mid-October. And, he says he’s keeping the tenant roster for the Village at Allen under wraps until May, right before ICSC’s annual mega-convention in Las Vegas.

The Village at Allen will take up 181 acres of the developer’s 400 acres, which straddle two cities. Its anchor is a $50-million event center.

[IMGCAP(2)]MGHerring also is planting 725,000 sf across the metroplex in Cedar Hill at the junction of FM 1382 and US Hwy. 67. A 265,000-sf first phase of Uptown Village at 305 W. FM 1382 will open March 12. The developer has just updated its tenant roster, adding 86,000 sf in leases with 23 more national, regional and local retail names. By mid-August, lights are expected to be on in 415,000 sf of retail space as the project pushes toward its 2009 build-out.

According to MGHerring’s team, Uptown Village is now 70% preleased.”It’s a collection of quality fashion and restaurants that have been missing from Cedar Hill,” Herring says. “It’s the most prominent project to be built in the Cedar Hill area.”

Herring says the fruit of working the projects in tandem is proven in its preleasing. “It allows us to leverage one off the other and get commitments for both,” he says.

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