FRISCO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – For more than 20 years now, Hall Park in Frisco has set itself apart with its flair for public art.
But now, developer Craig Hall has plans to reimagine it.
“I’m very passionate about it partly because I love Frisco, it’s partly because I love the arts, and it’s fun to be able to do something in a first-class quality manner,” said Hall.
Last month, the city of Frisco approved rezoning the park filled with office buildings, to allow Hall to build as many as 2,000 apartment units.
Hall says workers today don’t want long commutes, and want to live near where they work. “In today’s world, everyone’s tired of long drives.”
But he says don’t expect all those apartments to be built right away. “This is not an overnight thing. We’ve told everybody 30 years. We believe this is a 30 year plan.”
Two high-rise apartment buildings are already going up in the Star and at Frisco Station across the street from Hall Park.
In nearby Plano, there are two other high-rise apartment buildings and a high-rise condo under construction in the Legacy West and Legacy Shops developments.
Frisco mayor Jeff Cheney says he’s not surprised. “There’s a lot of demand to live in this region. Not just Frisco, but Plano and surrounding cities. There are a lot of jobs here. As soon as the units are built, they’re usually leased out. They pre-lease while they’re being built.”
In addition, Hall says he will build more office buildings as well, some as high as 400 feet.
Those will be built close to the Dallas North Tollway.
Aside from apartments though, Hall has another idea: build a park, similar to Klyde Warren Park in Dallas.
It would face the Star’s Ford Center, and one of Hall’s office buildings would have to be torn down to make room for it. “In fact, the same designers who designed Klyde Warren Park, they’re working with us right now on it.”
Both Hall and the Mayor says businesses and their employees are attracted to amenities such as parks and other places they can walk around.
Hall has also offered to donate land for a performing arts center, a public-private partnership the Mayor says is among the city’s top priorities.
Mayor Cheney said, “The vision that Craig Hall has and what he’s been able to offer the project is incredible. Just the concept of having the Ford Center look down the plaza at the Star and across the park at a Performing Arts Center is an incredible vision.”
The mayor says just last week, he met with Frisco ISD, the University of North Texas, which is building a campus in the city and Collin College, to discuss the performing arts center.