In the past year, Fort Worth’s skyline has seen a number of new investments — from the construction of office buildings at Sundance Square to the redevelopment of One City Place — putting the city in an enviable position. “The storyline in Fort Worth is that there’s new space and new opportunities there, “Walter Bialas, vice president and market research director for JLL, told the Dallas Business Journal. “ Much like Dallas, Fort Worth is very healthy overall and there’s a lot of new construction taking place.” Fort Worth, being part of the larger North Texas region, shares in the region’s positive job growth and has been a big economic generator of jobs on the west side of Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, he told me.
As part of that growth, the city’s real estate market has tightened as industries, such as the energy sector have surged. That has developers bringing new office buildings to the market, which have a prelease rate of nearly 70 percent, according to JLL’s recently released Spring 2014 U.S. Skyline Report. That has the market’s rental rates rising 7.8 percent in the past 12 months, with a direct vacancy rate of 17 percent, according to the report. One of the largest vacancies in downtown Fort Worth is the One City Place building, a 306,470-square-foot office tower with an occupancy rate of 6.5 percent, but it’s in the midst of being redeveloped. “It’s in a great location and it will lease up fairly quickly at good rates,” Bialas told me. “Fort Worth is part of the whole job growth picture in North Texas.”