Fort Worth’s 5 Tallest Skyscrapers

September 8th, 2014

While the Forth Worth skyline may not scrape the Olympian heights of Chicago, New York, or even Dallas, the downtown houses some mighty architecture looming over the city. Fort Worth’s post-modernist architecture, actually, is quite the complement to the city’s simple, clean, unpretentious image.

 

1. Wells Fargo Tower/Omni Fort Worth Hotel

Fort Worth has a tie for fifth place on its tallest buildings list. Wells Fargo Tower and the Omni both reach 447 feet. Wells has 33 floors and was completed in 1982. For a year, it was the city’s highest peak, until Burnett Plaza was completed. The Omni, completed in 2009, is the tallest building built in Fort Worth this century.

 

2. Fort Worth Tower

Before the Wells Fargo Tower took the prize away from it, the Fort Worth Tower was the city’s tallest structure. In 2000, a tornado nearly ruined this fine old building. It was saved from the chopping block by an effort to convert it to a residential building ‒‒ now the tallest such building in the city. It now is Fort Worth’s fourth-tallest building, at 488 feet.

 

3. Carter and Burgess Plaza

Known more by its address than proper name, 777 Main Street, the plaza building stands where the city’s famed Aviation Building stood from 1930 to 1978. The building has had many monikers over the years, including Continental Plaza and UPR Plaza. But it’s always stood 525 feet tall.

 

4. D.R. Horton Tower

The D.R. Horton Tower misses being the tallest building in Fort Worth by a mere 20 feet. At 547 feet, this 38-floor giant is the taller of the two towers in the City Center Towers Complex.

5. Burnett Plaza

Since its completion in 1983, Burnett Plaza has ruled the skies of Fort Worth’s downtown. It’s 40 floors soar to 567 feet and stands on the former site of the Medical Arts Building. The plaza also features the 50-foot “Man With a Briefcase” sculpture by Jonathan Borofsky ‒‒ an aluminum sculpture with the cutout of a businessman in the center.

Free Dallas – Fort Worth & North Texas Museums | Free Family Fun

September 2nd, 2014

 

One of the great things about the DFW Metroplex is just how much culture you get. The arts are big and bold here (this is Texas, after all), and in many of the finest museums, it’s actually free.

Dallas Museum of Art

 

Formerly paid-entry, the DMA now offers free admission to some of the finest art in the Southwest. With permanent and regularly changing exhibitions, you can see everything from early American to pop; from classical to post-modern.

Crow Collection of Asian Art

 

Just across the street from the DMA, at the base of the Trammell-Crow Center downtown, is the Crow Collection of Asian Art. This two-floor museum, with some outdoor art and gardens to boot, is rich in Oriental and South Asian art, artifacts, sculptures, and cultural relics.

Museum of Geometric and MADI Art

 

Over in Uptown, at 3109 Carlisle Street, is the MADI, a museum and gallery of unique geometric art for the modern eye. The MADI is open every day except Monday.

Amon Carter Museum

 

Amon Carter Museum

The granddaddy of American Art in North Texas is Fort Worth’s Amon Carter Museum. Though special exhibits almost always come with an entry fee, admission to the Amon Carter’s permanent collection is always free and many temporary collections are free as well. The museum also sponsors family days with crafts, storytime, lectures, talks, and tours, all free.

Kimbell Art Museum

 

Not far from the Amon Carter, in the Fort Worth Cultural District, is the Kimbell. Admission to the permanent collection is free, though there is usually a fee to view temporary collections. Tuesdays offer half-price admission to the temporary exhibits.

Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth

 

The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth features art in all forms, in all media, created after World War II. It’s permanent collection includes pieces by legends like Picasso and Warhol. While the Modern charges a fee most days, Wednesdays and the first Sunday of every month are free.

Sid Richardson Museum

 

If you want to see some great Western art, head to Fort Worth’s Sundance Square area and see the Sid Richardson Museum. This museum is always free and features works by such Western-themed masters as Charles M. Russell and Frederic Remington.

Dallas’ 5 Tallest Skyscrapers

August 29th, 2014

 

Ah, the Dallas skyline. One of the most recognizable skylines in the country, if for no other reason than Reunion Tower and the giant ball of light thereon.

But did you know that Reunion Tower is actually not the tallest building in the city? It’s not even in the top five. Which buildings overshadow Big D’s most notable architectural landmark?

1. Fountain Place

Arguably the most beautiful skyscraper in town, Fountain Place is Dallas’ fifth-tallest building, and the 106th-tallest in the United States. This is the slivery-blue skyscraper that twists like a glimmering, 62-story ice cream cone. It measures 720 feet tall and features a dazzling, walk-through falling-water garden at its base.

 

2. JPMorganChase Tower

At 738 feet and 55 floors, this tower of financial power is the fourth-tallest building in Dallas. It also is the 91st-tallest in the United States. Built in 1987, this building is known for its curved glass top and a seven-story hole in the top-center that gives it its more common nickname: The Keyhole Building.

 

3. Comerica Bank Tower

Originally known as Momentum Place, the tower was built as the new headquarters of MCorp Bank in 1987. The building stands 787 feet (60 floors) tall and is the 52nd-tallest in the country. It also is a main hub in the Dallas Pedestrian Network and features retail spaces underground.

 

4. Renaissance Tower

Renaissance Tower, at 886 feet, is the runner-up for Dallas’ tallest building. It is the 25th-tallest in the U.S. and 143rd-tallest in the world. Originally constructed in 1974 to a height of 710 feet, this building would actually be the city’s fifth-tallest skyscraper if not for the addition of rooftop spires added in 1987, bringing it’s bottom-to-top measurement just shy of the city’s tallest.

 

5. Bank of America Tower

The tallest structure in the city, Bank of America Tower has loomed over all other buildings in town since 1985. It is the third-tallest building in Texas, 22nd-tallest in the U.S., and 123rd-tallest in the world. It measures 921 feet and 72 stories.

Our Dallas Cowboys ‒‒ Will They Be As Hot As Our Real Estate Market?

August 27th, 2014

 

All right, so there’s not been that much to cheer about at Cowboys Stadium these last few (or several) years. And yes, we all know about the dysfunctional management, the questionable calls, the trades of promising players (so long, DeMarcus Ware and Jason Hatcher).

But does that mean the 2014-15 season will be another bleak chapter in a once-proud history? Not absolutely. Maybe the ‘boys won’t boom like Dallas’s real estate market (seriously, it’s on fire right now), but there’s plenty to look forward to this coming season.

For one thing, Dallas hasn’t, at least, gotten worse. Last year’s second-place, 8-8 finish would be a welcome record for a lot of teams (namely our fellow Texans down in Houston), even if it’s old news for Cowboy fans. And the Cowboys went 5-1 against their division rivals, which counts for a lot, as the East heats up. For another thing, despite the losses of DeMarcus Ware and Jason Hatcher, the Cowboys picked up Henry Melton, rookie phenom Zack Martin, and DeMarcus Lawrence.

Dallas also picked up former Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Scott Linehan, who managed the seemingly impossible task of turning the worst team in NFL history into a near-contender. Dallas, after all, will need a major offense (especially to compensate for the porous defense), and even if the defense doesn’t look much improved, the offense could surprise.Jason Witten

Whether the team itself will burn as brightly as the city’s condo and housing market, the scrutiny on head coach Jason Garrett, in his last season under contract, will be sizzling. Cowboys owner George Steinbrenner ‒‒ I mean, uh, Jerry Jones ‒‒ would love to see Garrett rebuild the franchise into an above-.500 winner, but let’s be real, another 8-8 year won’t likely spell a renewal for Coach Garrett.

The important thing to consider is that while the Cowboys might not offer a ton of reasons for believing in improvement this year, the rest of the NFC is going through some shakeups as well. If the Philadelphia Eagles get the sophomore jinx under their new head coach, Chip Kelly, and the ‘skins and Giants stay humble, it’s not a bad bet that Dallas could actually win the division.

Hey, dare to dream, right?

Fort Worth Commercial Real Estate 2014 Midyear Update

August 25th, 2014

The biggest news in Fort Worth’s commercial real estate market this summer is the proposed new 14,000-seat multipurpose arena and sports facility in the Cultural District. According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the new project would be the first step in a larger plan that will eventually tear down the city’s iconic, but beleaguered, domed convention center. Though unanimously approved by the City Council, voters still need to approve a referendum to build it.commercial real estate, Fort Worth

If built, the new arena is expected to reinvigorate Fort Worth’s sagging appeal for major events. It is expected to include underground parking, an additional ballroom and a second-story restaurant, the Star-Telegram reported.

Another big-deal possibility is the negotiations between Hillwood Properties and Marriott Corp. for a new hotel downtown. According to the Dallas Business Journal, plans for a 128-room hotel with conference space and a ballroom would go in the developer’s Alliance Town Center in northern Fort Worth. The complete development plan includes shopping and restaurants and is, according to the Journal, part of Hillwood’s 18,000-acre AllianceTexas development. Construction could begin as early as August.

Also according to the Dallas Business Journal, UMB Bank will set up a physical presence in downtown Fort Worth. The Journal reported recently that UMB will expand here and develop a dedicated Fort Worth team, after decades of serving Texas customers out of its Kansas City, headquarters. UMB’s Fort Worth employees have been working out of offices in the city’s central business district, but will get a permanent home when the company identifies the best location.

Another big change downtown could come from the recent sale of the historic Fort Worth Public Market Building on Henderson Street by Texas Rangers co-owner Bob Simpson to a real estate faction of the Wilks family in Cisco. According to the Star-Telegram, the Wilkses will likely restore the building as a business building and not a public marketplace. There are no intentions, apparently, by the new owners to tear the building down, as some had feared.

Dallas Singles: Top 5 Places To Live

August 22nd, 2014

 

Moving to a new area can be hard enough even before you start trying to meet people. The good news is, Dallas has plenty of areas for you to meet other singles.

Uptown and the Village

The trendiest neighborhood in the entire DFW Metroplex is Uptown Dallas, just off of downtown and Turtle Creek. Uptown’s main thoroughfare is McKinney Avenue, home of some of the most popular bars and clubs in the city. And these bars and clubs cater to every taste that has a taste for upscale. There are wine bars, karaoke clubs, English taverns, hipster haunts, and restaurant bars all along McKinney where young singles congregate.

Slightly less pricey, but just as full of available 20- and 30-something professionals is Uptown’s closest neighborhood, The Village. Though lighter on the bars and clubs, The Village is designed architecturally to have people meet their neighbors and put people in connection with each other. Outdoor sports courts, open-air cafes, and friendly dog parks are just some of the places singles connect here.

 vip realty dallasDowntown

 

Downtown Dallas, the center of business and art, is a perfect place for singles who love culture and the city’s hefty artistic vibe. Downtown is home to the Dallas Museum of Art, the Meyerson Symphony Center, the West End Historic District, and several streets that include popular hotels and great nightlife, restaurants, and shopping venues.

  Deep Ellum

 

If you’re looking for an artsier partner who likes things edgier and grittier than Uptown or The Village, Deep Ellum might be the place for you. On any given night, particularly the weekends, Deep Ellum is packed with young singles hanging out in all-night cafes, clubs, and concerts performed in old, converted industrial buildings. If you love blues, alternative, and rock music, you’ll do well in Deep Ellum.

 greenvilleGreenville Avenue and East Dallas

 

Similar to Deep Ellum, though not quite as alternative, is the East Dallas neighborhood of Lower Greenville. This neighborhood is packed with young singles who love to party and catch headliner concerts at theaters like The Granada. Lower Greenville has been a major nightlife hub in Dallas for years, thanks to a combination of college students from nearby SMU and young people who like to be able to get a drink and some pizza deep into the night.

 Oak Lawn

If you’re looking for a same-sex partner, there is surely no better place for you than Oak Lawn, the capital of DFW’s LGBT community. But Oak Lawn’s upscale boutiques and clubs cater to all, and welcome everyone. This is an extremely popular neighborhood for 20- and 30-somethings hoping to find a mate or who just want to date and meet new people.

Back To School Shopping ‒‒ Top Three Dallas-area Malls

August 20th, 2014

 

Whether your kids are looking forward to going back to school or not, there’s no reason for them to look out of style. If you want them to look their best for a brand new year, you can’t go wrong with these Dallas malls.

1. The Galleria

Less a mall than a tourist destination for some ‒‒ then, what do you expect from a place with its own ice rink ‒‒ the Galleria is an ideal indoor spot to explore. There’s always something to do here. Still, if back-to-school shopping is what you came for, you’ll probably find it, from the Gap to Saks Fifth Avenue. It’s also home to some stores you’ll only find in Texas: American Girl, Karen Millen, St. Croix, and Thomas Pink. You can shop high-end if you like, but you don’t have to here.

 

 

 

stonebrair2. Stonebriar Center Mall

One of the great things about shopping at this Frisco mainstay is that it’s actually easy to navigate. Well-lit and open, there’s plenty of back-to-school stuff in the offing, in a rather cool, family-vibe kind of place. The main stores include Macy’s, JCPenney, Nordstrom, Dillard’s, and Sears, so you can mix and match from higher-end to affordable. And after shopping, you can go ice skating, catch a movie, or get your game on at Dave and Buster’s.

 

 

3. Northpark Mall

As Dallas malls go, Northpark is probably the king (or queen, if you prefer). Home to art shows and permanent art displays, Northpark Mall is abundant in activities and shops that can outfit the kids as lavishly or simply as you’d like. The mall features everything from Barneys New York, Nordstrom, and Neiman Marcus, to Macy’s, Billabong, and the Nike Store. There are even DFW-exclusive shops like Gregory’s, Officine Panerai, and Industrie Denim. Want even higher-end? Try Gucci, Versace, Louis Vuitton, or Oscar de la Renta.

Dallas Traffic: Steer Clear If You Can

August 16th, 2014

 

Anyone who’s spent time driving in the Dallas area has also spent time sitting in traffic congestion in the Dallas area. Snarled traffic is a fact of life here, and it’s likely to get worse. Road expansion projects can’t seem to keep up with the influx of new residents looking to call DFW home. According to Forbes, Dallas is the fourth-fastest-growing city in America, and with all those new people come more vehicles for the roads.

Some areas are worse than others for traffic. If you can, avoid these five highway areas when you drive:

1. Central 75 from the Bush Turnpike to LBJ

Highway 75, the Central Expressway, is nicknamed the ”Central Distressway” for a reason. Once a mere two-lane highway between Dallas and Oklahoma, 75 has been expanded and widened ‒‒ to aggravatingly little effect, it seems. The six-mile stretch of this road in North Dallas, between the two presidential roads known as the LBJ (Route 635) and the President George Bush Turnpike, is roundly considered one of its worst segments, often taking more than a half-hour to traverse. It’s particularly clogged in morning and evening rush.

2. Central 75 between LBJ and Woodall Rogers

Even worse than the above stretch of 75 is the one connecting the LBJ to Downtown Dallas. South of the LBJ, traffic often gums up, whether you’re heading north or south. Daytime is the worst, especially if there is an accident, which reduces lanes. When driving this 10-mile stretch, budget at least an extra half-hour on your drive.

3. I-30 from Loop 12 into Downtown Dallas

Wherever Downtown Dallas meets a major road, congestion is sure to follow. I-30 from Loop 12 into the downtown is often an eight-mile parking lot, especially during business hours.

4. Woodall Rogers between 35 (Stemmons) and 75 in Downtown Dallas

This twisty-turny piece of road through downtown is often (and ironically) the easiest route to one of the major highways from downtown. But unless you have business there, stay away ‒‒ unless you want a lot of time to look at every building on your way through.

5. I-35 near Downtown Dallas

If traffic congestion had an all-star team, this hunk of asphalt would be the captain of it. Any time of the day or night, I-35 can look more like a car dealership than a highway. Be prepared to stop, sit, and inch forward, especially where 35 meets 30, 45, and 75. You’ve been warned.

Great Wolf Lodge for Family Fun

August 6th, 2014

Let’s face it. Texas can be a bit on the warmer side in the summer months. And with the heat and the kids home from school, don’t you just daydream about a nice cool splashdown?

Well, surely there’s no better way to cool off than a day of waterpark fun at Great Wolf Lodge in Grapevine, home of some of the world’s best water rides, specialty restaurants, arcades, spas (including one for kids), fitness rooms, and children’s activity areas.

Waterpark rides include Fort Mackenzie, a four-story interactive tree house in the center of Great Wolf’s indoor water park, featuring suspension bridges, swinging cargo nets, treetop slides, soaking spray stations, and 1,000-gallon bucket that tips from the treetops; # Howlin’ Tornado, a six-story drop through a wet-and-wild funnel will swirl you 30 feet up the sides of the funnel, before sending you to a safe, splashy landing; #Alberta Falls, a four-story twister that ends in the plunge pool; and #Slap Tail Pond, a wave pool that just might be the closest you can get to the ocean in this part of Texas.

Not up for getting drenched? That’s all right, Great Wolf has plenty of stuff to do while staying nice and dry. With a magic wand in-hand, you can explore the enchanted kingdom of MagiQuest, where you and the family enchant objects, befriend a pixie, learn from an ancient wizard, battle a goblin, and outwit a dragon. Or maybe you want to let loose in the Northern LightsArcade. If kids designed your family room, it would probably look something like this, a sprawling, family-friendly arcade featuring more than 100 games designed to bring out the inner child in everyone. Or take a break in Great Wolf’s #Scooops Kid Spa, where whimsical wall murals, ice cream cone stools, and oversized banana split pedicure thrones pamper the young ones and give them a (delicious) taste of the high life.

Cabanas are available to rent daily for your family’s comfort and convenience in the waterpark. A Cabana has seating for four with a table and chairs, a 20″ flat screen TV with satellite access, a safe, Great Wolf Lodge Playing cards, and a copy of USA Today. There is also a mini refrigerator is stocked with an assortment of non-alcoholic beverages.

Dallas’s Top 10 Landmarks

July 28th, 2014

 

People from all over visit Dallas for more than just the Cowboys (whom we all know play in Arlington anyway). If you feel like being a tourist in Big D, visit these must-see places.

Dealey Plaza and the Sixth Floor Museum

 

Dallas’ most unfortunately famous site is Dealy Plaza, where President John F. Kennedy was killed. The Sixth Floor Museum at the Dallas Book Depository annually draws millions of visitors, and many a conspiracy and history buff has walked the famed “grassy knoll.” The Sixth Floor Museum is a National Historic Landmark District.

Reunion Tower

 

The downtown skyline’s most famous site is Reunion Tower, which features the ball of light. Reunion Tower has an observation deck and a rotating restaurant offering sweeping, dramatic views of the city. Just make sure it’s open if you’re looking to dine higher than all others in town.

Old Red Courthouse

 

The Old Red Courthouse is a gorgeous red brick structure built in 1892 at 100 South Houston Street that and has been restored as the Old Red Museum. The museum highlights the history of Dallas since its founding.

 

Southfork Ranch

 

Southfork Ranch’s was the home of TV’s legendary Ewing family on the hit 80s soap “Dallas.” Though not technically in the city, who could claim this 200-acre property located in Parker to not be a popular and purely Dallas landmark?

 

The Pegasus

 

Walk downtown, near the Magnolia Hotel and look up. There you will see the mighty winged Pegasus in brilliant red neon, soaring across the hotel’s façade. Pegasus and the Magnolia are both popular downtown attractions.

 

Adolphus Hotel

Speaking of landmark hotels, probably none is more so than the Adolphus, downtown. The tallest building in Texas from 1912 to 1923, the Adolphus has played hosts to presidents, heads of states, and captains of industry, and is rich in history.

 

Pioneer Plaza

At the intersection of Young and Griffin streets is a sweeping, dynamic bronze scene of cattle and horses in the throes of a cattle drive. This paean to Texas’ cowboy history is a definite must-see.

 

Big Tex

Big Tex, the 52-foot statue, greets all comers to the grounds of the State Fair of Texas in Fair Park. Big Tex is used to make announcements during the state fair and has even been lovingly parodied in the definitive Texas comedy, “King of the Hill.”

 

Cotton Bowl

Speaking of Fair Park, this section of Dallas is home to Cotton Bowl Stadium. Since 1936, the stadium has been synonymous with college bowl football games and was once the home of the Dallas Cowboys.

 

The Texas Star

And speaking of the State Fair, the only sight that might upstage Big Tex is the very symbol of Texas itself, the Texas Star Ferris Wheel. You can see this icon from far out in the night, and if you’re in town for the fair, you should always follow the star to where it leads you.