The transactions were both recorded on August 10, according to the Dallas Central Appraisal District, but the firm quietly revealed its plans to build at the 400 block of West Commerce Street months earlier.
The neighborhood in question was an obvious draw. Alliance Residential opened Broadstone Ltd. over the summer at 305 West Commerce Street. The Toll Brothers site will be right next door and directly across Commerce Street from Pike West. It is also less than a block from the recently completed Alexan West Dallas apartments and two blocks from Sylvan|Thirty.
Recent media reports have been sketchy, but a Toll Brothers spokesman said that the plan is to build a seven-story apartment building with 280 units. The project is scheduled to break ground in June 2018. If all goes as planned, Toll Brothers will begin leasing the first units by the winter of 2019.
The builder did unveil an architectural rendering. The concept includes several large rooftop decks above the fourth floors. They are placed on two sides to overlook Commerce and Pittman Streets.
There is a main entrance lobby with a three-story atrium at the corner of the street intersection. The exterior materials are of glass and masonry in cool gray and almond tones. The site plan also appears to include broad tree-lined sidewalks and some parallel parking beside the street, which would be in keeping with the city’s new Complete Streets requirements. There is also an unusual second story balcony that runs the building length along Commerce Street.
Toll Brothers purchased one vacant tract of a little more than 2 acres from a family trust. The second tract is just over 1.8 acres and sits at the northeast corner of Commerce and Pittman Streets. Combined, the properties total 3.86 acres and are valued on the tax rolls at $2.24 million.
The corner tract comes with a few obstacles. There is a 32,880-square-foot commercial building on site that was built in 1985, which will require demolition — and Toll Brothers has not yet obtained the permit.
Nevertheless, the Horsham, Pennsylvania-based builder should have a much easier time moving its project forward in West Dallas than it has with a multifamily project it’s been working on in Oak Lawn. The powerful Oak Lawn Committee had the developer held up in negotiations for months on a project planned for the corner of Congress Avenue and Welborn Street.
Developers coming to West Commerce have been attracted to more than the location’s proximity to downtown. Much of the immediate area has industrial or other commercial zoning and very little in the way of single family residential, or the neighborhood associations that tend to require tribute of some kind.