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ARLINGTON, TX-Construction is underway on the 100,000-square-foot Village at Sports Center, a retail and office center adjacent to the city-owned Harold Patterson Sports Center and geared to serve the center’s clientele. If the $20 million concept is successful, the owner of development company Oakhollow Group Ltd. says he’d like to try it elsewhere.

Corbett Nichter, vice president with general contractor Key Construction’s Fort Worth office says dirt started to move at the 6.7-acre site on Cooper Street and Wimbledon Drive about 10 days ago. He says the project will be completed by late summer 2009, with 50,000 square feet on the first floor dedicated to retail leasing, while 50,000 square feet on the upper level is reserved for office tenants. Weitzman Group of Dallas has the leasing assignment.

Mojy Haddad, principal of the Arlington development company, says the idea for an office and retail project to attract the 730,000 people visiting the 142-acre sports complex annually made sense to the City of Arlington, which sold the adjacent the parcel about a year ago. He says it made sense for other developers, as competition for the project was fierce. Ultimately, “our design was a pedestrian-oriented concept,” Haddad says. “We created a pedestrian link between the complex and the project without traffic flowing over it and the city liked it.” Haddad’s other company, CHS Architects, is the project architect.

Haddad tells GlobeSt.com that the development will have a sports themed plaza to tie in with the complex, complete with a large fountain in the shape of a football. “The idea is that athlete’s parents and visitors could come and meet up at our place, by the fountain, and get a cup of coffee or go eat,” Haddad comments.

He says depending on Village at Sports Center’s success, he’d like to expand the concept to other recreational sports areas throughout the Metroplex. “The good thing about this is we’ll be capturing a lot of traffic, with 700,000 pedestrians and 70,000 cars on Cooper Street each week,” Haddad remarks. “I’d love to explore this type of opportunity with other cities that might have similar situations.”

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