Foundations - Summer 2017


Dallas-Fort Worth is a burgeoning market for e-commerce fulfillment, with companies such as Amazon, Kohl’s, Wal-Mart and others operating large, even multiple, facilities in North Texas.

According to a report by CBRE, data released by the U.S. Census Bureau for the first time offers a breakdown of internet sales by retail category. 

The data is available for only 2015, but it offers key takeaways about the industry. Here’s what CBRE had to say:

The electronics and appliances category shows the highest e-commerce penetration of any retail category, with nearly 20 percent of total sales occurring online in 2015.

Clothing and accessories stores account for the highest total volume of internet sales ($24.2 billion), but e-commerce share remains below 10 percent.

General merchandise, which includes department stores and other mass merchandisers, also represents a high volume of internet sales ($22.5 billion) but a low rate of e-commerce penetration — 3.3 percent.

Food and beverage stores, which consist primarily of groceries and supermarkets, remain among the lowest for e-commerce share at 0.1 percent and only $1 billion in total internet sales.

Motor vehicle and parts dealers feature the lowest rate of e-commerce penetration, as most car sales occur at brick-and-mortar dealerships. This is likely to rise over the coming years as online vendors grow, but the current annual e-commerce sales for this category are just $528 million.

The U.S. Census Bureau says the information, while subject to a margin of error, accounts for roughly 87 percent of online retail sales. 



Downtown Fort Worth, like downtown Dallas, continues to draw interest from investors and 

is seeing new hotels and new residents.

Everything seems to be moving upward, and the research department at Downtown Fort Worth Inc. has compiled some interesting data on several real estate asset classes showing why that’s true.

Here are some key takeaways from the annual State of Fort Worth Report.

  • Downtown has an appraised property value of $3.4 billion.
  • Downtown has an average retail occupancy of 92 percent.
  • Since 2006, retail sales have increased 98 percent downtown.  
  • Multifamily occupancy topped 97 percent in the last year. 
  • There are 2,603 residential units planned or under construction, which is a 63 percent increase in inventory. 
  • Six hotels are planned or under construction, totaling 1,065 rooms.
  • As of the fourth quarter of 2016, Class-A office space in downtown was 88 percent occupied.
  • Downtown has 7,616 residents.



The retail landscape in North Texas continues to be shaped by the “strong and steady employment expansion” in the region, according to the second quarter 2017 market report from Marcus & Millichap.

The report says that thousands of jobs are being created in mixed-use developments across the region that combine retail, office, and residential into one master-planned community. That combination is drawing a variety of retail establishments — from necessities-based retailers to eateries, and even specialty stores.

It’s also drawing nontraditional retail tenants such as fitness facilities, urgent-care centers, and dentists — businesses offering lifestyle and health-related options for office workers or those who live in the developments.

Marcus & Millichap also says that the diversification of tenant mixes in North Texas shopping centers is creating strong traffic and tenant demand.

Vacancy rates are being driven to historic lows as supply additions continue to lag the pace of absorption, the company says.

The report says strong hiring in the Dallas Region is fueling retail spending significantly.



More and more, Dallas-Fort Worth is becoming known for its industrial properties that thrive in a location known for access to air and land transportation options.

JLL reports that the industrial market in North Texas is attracting a diverse industrial tenant base, according to the breakdown of industrial tenants by major Standard Industrial Classification (SIC).

The breakdown looks at the 2,300+ tenants in North Texas with more than 50,000 square feet of industrial space. JLL says that retail, commerce, and consumer products show clear regional strength.

JLL says that a major takeaway from their study is that DFW’s industrial market is very diverse, and has many drivers shaping demand because of North Texas’ central location in the U.S., the region’s status as a top five metro economy, multiple logistics hubs, the availability of rail and air transportation. and the region’s great access to highways — both regional and interstate.



From 2010 to 2016, more people moved out of New York than moved in. Often they were headed to Dallas.

Quartz says while New York is an epicenter of culture, fashion, and finance, there’s a factor that causes residents to head elsewhere — lack of jobs.

New York lost 900,000 residents to domestic migration, Quartz says. That’s the largest loss by any major U.S. metro area, and according to data, many may have headed to Dallas, the city that added the largest number of residents during that time period.

The migration was fueled by jobs created by the brisk economy of the South and cheaper real estate, Quartz said. The website said Dallas makes a great economic case to attract many of those migrants. Its economy has grown 4 percent on average yearly from 2011 to 2015, and Dallas has added more jobs in the past 12 months.

Dallas was the 2nd top job generator in May nationwide, producing 115,800 extra jobs compared to the same month a year earlier. New York was first with 157,500 new jobs.

And, the jobs are often related to Dallas’ success in luring corporations to relocate their headquarters to North Texas — Toyota, Jamba Juice, Jacobs Engineering, and a division of Boeing, for example.


Dallas-Fort Worth has broken a 34-year-old record for high occupancy in the retail sector and now is at 92.6 percent, according to a report by the Weitzman Group.

That exceeds the previous high of 92 percent in 1984, the report says.

DFW, Austin, Houston, and San Antonio all reported near record-low construction in 2016, boosting occupancy by sending retailers to existing space in established submarkets, Weitzman reports. 

The company says that new space in 2017 will be on par with or slightly below the level in 2016.

Grocery stores remain the dominant anchor type in the state’s largest metro areas. In fact, much of the new space retail space added in 2016 was for grocery-anchored sites, led by such companies as Kroger and some mixed-use projects.

Weitzman also reports that more than 3 million square feet of retail and restaurant projects are under construction in North Texas. That’s  the most in nearly a decade. 

That figure is the most new construction since 2008 when there was 4.9 million square feet of retail space completed.

Where are the projects? You’ll find big concentrations of new shops in  Frisco’s Star development with the Dallas Cowboys, the new Legacy West in Plano, and the Shops at Clearfork development in southwest Fort Worth.

A large piece of retail construction in DFW is supermarkets, big box stores, and entertainment facilities. 

Analysts forecast a downward trend in new retail construction beginning next year, but bricks and mortar stores are anything but dead.

“People still like to go out and eat and be entertained, and people still like to shop,” Weitzman CEO Marshall Mills told The Dallas Morning News. “And in this market compared to some of the other major markets in the U.S. we have a really robust economy.”