Few people have made as big a mark on Dallas-Fort Worth as Ross Perot, Jr. The Alliance development, north of Fort Worth, is perhaps Perot’s most visible achievement. Over the past 30 years, Alliance has grown to 26,000 acres encompassing a huge industrial airport, nearly 500 companies and 50,000 people.
As Alliance continues to grow, Perot is looking to the future with other projects as well. Perot’s Hillwood development company has partnered with rideshare company Uber as it pioneers flying taxis in North Texas.
“One day you’ll be able to fly point-to-point like we drive point-to-point around the cities,” he said. The first "vertiport" is already under construction at Frisco Station, where passengers will shuttle to and from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.
Perot also has an iconic skyscraper on the drawing board for downtown Dallas, designed by famed architect Norman Foster. It could be the tallest in the city. “It’ll help change the profile of downtown Dallas,” Perot said.
He is currently searching for a client who needs the tower’s one million square-feet of space.
Closer to earth, Perot is focused on building neighborhoods that blend the best of old and new. They include old-fashioned touches like community gathering places, coffee shops and even a farm. But the homes are thoroughly modern.
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"High speed fiber in the home. We’re starting to roll out 5G in Frisco," Perot said.
Perot sees no end to the opportunity and explosive growth in North Texas. In the next 20 years he said, "We'll pass Chicago. It’s going to be New York, L.A. and Dallas-Fort Worth."
Education, he said, will be critical to keeping North Texas competitive.
"We’ve got to get all these kids going through our school system to match up to the jobs that are coming."
Perot acknowledges there may be challenges ahead, especially with infrastructure such as transportation, water and housing. But when asked if there’s anywhere else he would rather be, the answer is unequivocal: "No. Dallas-Fort Worth is the place."