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Downtown Dallas skyscraper will get makeover for apartments and offices

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The landmark skyscraper in downtown Dallas has just been purchased by a developer planning to convert it into an apartment or office.

The 49-story Energy Plaza opened on Brian Street in 1983. The 1.3 million square foot skyscraper was designed by renowned architect IM Pei.

The new owner Todd Interests and partners will renovate the almost vacant tower. This is the third downtown project for developers.

“This will, without exception, be the best office and residential building in Dallas,” said developer Sean Todd.

The upper floors of the tower will house 294 homes. And the lower part of the building will be converted into a first-class office space.

The first floor of the skyscrapers and the surrounding plaza area will change the most.

“It’s going to be pretty great,” Todd said. “We take a large triangular area in front of the tower and create a magnificent garden.

“We have a 27-foot-high seamless glass wall in front of the building,” he said. “There are private entries for offices and private entries for homes and restaurants on the ground floor.”

Most of the appearance of the tower remains unchanged.

An outdoor balcony is added to the corner of each triangular floor. “We take those windows out and open them to the outdoor terraces on all floors,” Todd said.

The Energy Plaza Tower on Brian Street was designed by architect IM Peiand Partners.(DMN file)

Dallas architect HKS is designing the project. Brasfield & Gorrie is a general contractor.

Over $ 300 million in redevelopment is underway in partnership with Moriah Real Estate and global investor Zurich Alternative Asset Management.

Bank OZK and Slate Asset Management are funding the project. Jones Lang LaSalle arranged the debt.

Redevelopment does not seek economic incentives for the city.

“The entire project will be completed within 20 months — we started today,” Todd said. “The first office tenant will move within 12 months.

“We will move the first residential tenant of the building 14 months from now.”

According to Todd, the refurbished skyscraper will have approximately 475,000 square feet of offices. CBRE Group’s Fletcher Cordell and Ben Davis are leasing space.

“Currently, we have a phone call from the office. Demand is strong,” says Todd. “We can offer a certain level of luxury at a rent that is dramatically cheaper than a new uptown building.

New to the renovation plan for the Energy Plaza Tower in downtown Dallas on Brian Street ...
The renovation plan for the Energy Plaza Tower in downtown Dallas on Brian Street includes a new glass-enclosed lobby and entrance.(Contribution / HKS)

The Energy Plaza refurbishment is Todd Interest’s second redevelopment of a tower in downtown Dallas designed by IM Pei.

Since 2012, Todd Interest has reused the 30-story Wandalas Center Tower on Brian Street and St. Paul Street. It was designed by IM Pei & Partners and opened as an office building in 1979. The almost empty tower has been converted into a combination of office and apartment.

“I’m honored to be working on two buildings designed by Pay,” Todd said. “He designed the Energy Plaza at the same time as his work at the Louvre Museum in Paris.”

Originally built as the regional headquarters of the oil company Atlantic Richfield, the Energy Plaza was occupied by TXU Electric for many years. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation also housed workers in the tower before moving to another downtown office.

The Energy Plaza is covered with a tapered communication tower that says Todd remains on the roof.

“This was about two and a half years of work,” Todd said to launch the tower project. “We are excited to start it.”

Todd Interests has a successful track record of trading downtown Dallas.

The developer and his partner spent $ 460 million to transform downtown’s landmark, the First National Bank Tower, into a combination of retail and office space, apartments and luxury hotels.

Approximately 95% of the 324 units in the Elm Street Building, which was reopened in 2020, are rented.

Todd Interest has also completed work on a 20-story office and apartment tower on Pearl Street on the eastern side of downtown.

The new skyscrapers are part of what developers call the East Quarter. A 20 acre area near the Deep Elm. Todd Interests has acquired over 12 old commercial buildings in the area and turned them into new offices and eateries. Most of those once vacant properties are filled.

Energy Plaza is the latest skyscraper in downtown Dallas and can be restarted.

Another developer, Woods Capital, is currently converting a 40-story Brian Tower and a 50-story Santander Tower into an office-apartment combination.

In 2016, the 33-story One Main Place Tower in downtown was transformed into a combination of offices and The Westin Hotel.

New to the renovation plan for the Energy Plaza Tower in downtown Dallas on Brian Street ...
The renovation plan for the Energy Plaza Tower in downtown Dallas on Brian Street includes a new Garden Plaza at the entrance.(Contribution / HKS)

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