Taxpayers Asked to Support for a Billion Dollar Development

Irving City Council approved Hidden Ridge Project support

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The Hidden Ridge project in North Irving’s Las Colinas area is a $1 billion development and Thursday night the city council approved allowing taxpayer support to help make it happen.

One South Irving leader said her part of the city deserves the same kind of taxpayer support.

The Hidden Ridge site in North Irving is 100 acres of raw land near Highway 114 owned by Verizon. The technology company is a partner in the development project. Verizon has an existing office just to the south. Pioneer Resources just moved into a new 10-story office building on another side of the development site.

A DART Rail line between DFW Airport and Downtown Dallas runs along the other side of the project. The DART Board this month approved construction of a new Hidden Ridge station to support the mixed-use project.

“It will have over three million square feet of Class A office space, 1,200 units of residential, a mix of shops and restaurants in there, a true lifestyle center,” said Irving Economic Development Director Philip Sanders.

The Irving City Council agenda Thursday night included an amended deal for a $24 million subsidy but Sanders said it is really only $18 million because the developer is paying part of the DART station cost.

He said the city money will only be paid in steps as the developer makes progress on the project.

“The city will actually retain $32 million in new taxes added to the tax roll, so it’s really a net gain, a significant gain to the city,” Sanders said.

Lisette Caraballo, a South Irving realtor and community activist, said she is not opposed to the North Irving economic development and the creation of new jobs.

“I’m for economic development, no matter what part of Irving it’s in. But a lot has been done in North Irving already,” Caraballo said.

Her South Irving real estate business iRealty is on Irving Boulevard at Main Street in old Downtown Irving. The city’s original central business district is very quiet.

“I want to know what is going to happen here. Why isn’t anything happening here, from the 183 to the Loop 12 corridor? Come to Downtown Irving. This is embarrassing,” Caraballo said.

Sanders said the city is about to begin a $20 million upgrade of Irving Boulevard through the oldest part of the city from Strickland Plaza to Sowers Road. It will include new bike lanes and landscaping.

“Las Colinas and North Irving gets a lot of the press, but there is a significant investment we make in South Irving, as well,” Sanders said.

Public meetings will be held on Feb. 11 to take neighborhood input on final design of the Irving Boulevard upgrade.

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