IRVING (CBSDFW.COM) – Nearly two years ago, Texas Stadium in Irving was brought down in a thunderous cloud. It took seconds to come down, but it’s becoming apparent that it may take years to rise up. “I think we’re realistically looking at three to five years,” admitted Irving councilman, Rick Stopfer.
Add that to the nearly two years that have since gone by, and the land that Landry built will have remained vacant for almost seven years. Not exactly what the city of Irving had hoped for, considering the property was touted as prime real estate.
“We’ve been in a down market with the economy,” explained Stopfer. “We really want to make a good choice beneficial for all of us,” the councilman added.
The 400-acre lot is surrounded by three major highways; 183, 114 and Loop 12. More than a million cars drive by the site every day. Despite the easy access and despite all that attention, there are no projects in the works.
Local realtor Barbara Van Poole agrees that the economy has crippled any chance of development. But she too believes the property will once again be ready for prime time. “There’s no doubt in my mind,” said Van Poole. “We need to start seeing more positive indicators in the economy and we are starting to see those,” she added.
In the meantime, the three highways, now being labeled by the city as the “Diamond Interchange” are being groomed for any and all projects. The widening of Highway 114 should be finished by the middle of 2013. The expansion of Highway 183 and Loop 12 will begin soon after.
Irving officials hope the new DART Orange Line, that stops near the property, will also make the empty lot more enticing. The DART line is expected to be completed sometime in 2013.
Everything from a mall, to entertainment venues, to apartments, to corporate headquarters has been pitched. But so far, the city has found nothing to cheer about for a piece of land that once had plenty to cheer about.