The 6,000 AT&T employees in downtown Dallas will soon have a restaurant and retail attraction at their four-building complex, open to other downtown neighbors, as well.
The $100 million 'Discovery District' is already under construction along Commerce Street where the curbside drop off area is being expanded outside the largest building in the complex, Whitacre Tower.
That will be followed by a restaurant cluster, performance stage and a larger AT&T store.
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Employees saw renderings and virtual reality videos of the project for the first time Monday in the Whitacre Tower lobby.
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“I think it’s great. I think it’s exciting. It’s going to make for a great working environment and I think it’s good for the surrounding area,” AT&T employee Jeff Jordan said.
The City of Dallas has already approved closing portions of Jackson and Akard Streets to expand the plaza amid AT&T’s buildings.
“Our goal all along has been to create a destination place for visitors, downtown residents, along with our employees,” said External Affairs Vice-President Michael Peterson. “It also allows us to distinguish ourselves from our competitors who have built in sprawling suburban campuses. Our employees have told us they really like living and working downtown.”
The company competes for high-tech workers with other large companies and the new complex could make the AT&T campus more appealing.
“With this $100 million dollar investment we’re going to make, it’s just going to amplify the attractiveness of AT&T we believe,” Peterson said.
The company plans to complete the Discovery District by the end of 2019.
“It’s going to be awesome to have wider variety, more options to choose from, right outside the door,” said AT&T employee Jessica Shapinas.
Several hotels nearby are receiving upgrades and four new downtown parks received bond money from voters last year.
“I believe Dallas is bursting at the seams. It’s getting larger. It is cause for these kind of actions, this kind of comfort for employees and I’m looking forward to it,” said AT&T employee Tamecka Frazier.