Recession ahead? Yes, but probably not soon

Don’t look for a recession in the months ahead.

That’s what economist Mark Zandi is saying as he scouts the economy for signs of the next downturn.

While Zandi is optimistic that the U.S. economy will continue humming into 2020, the risks of another setback are growing.

“The next six to 12 months feel pretty good to me,” Zandi, chief economist with Moody’s Analytics, said in Dallas on Wednesday. “If this expansion continues, it will become the longest in history.”

Steve Brown, Real Estate Editor

How healthy is Texas’ economy compared to rest of the nation?


In the Weaver podcast, “Beyond the Numbers,” host Shelby Skrhak spoke with Adam Jones, consultant for Weaver and owner of Capitol Jones, LLC, on how the state of Texas is faring economically in 2019. Jones said he feels it’s one of the best in the United States.

Compared to the rest of the nation, said Jones, the Texas economy is outstanding and extremely diverse. Texas proved itself to be a LIFO, or “last-in, first-out” economy: the last to be in and first to be out of the national recession, and is only continuing its march upward. It’s the only state in the union that can “produce citrus fruit and winter wheat in abundance” as well as lead in other markets, including the energy and manufacturing sectors, he said.

The most recent Dallas Federal Reserve Board projection shows Texas at a 2.4 percent employment growth rate. Though Texas sees that as a “cooling” of the economy, compared to other states, it’s a solid number and is a sign of a healthy economy, he said.

By Weaver

North Texas home sales rebound in April

North Texas home sales rebound in April after declines in the first quarter.

More than 9,600 single-family homes were sold by local real estate agents — 5% more than in April 2018.

The increase in area home purchases last month followed several months of weakening sales due to affordability issues and upticks in mortgage costs.

April’s year-over-year sales gain wasn’t enough to make up for weaker homebuying earlier in the year. So far in 2019, North Texas real estate agents have sold 30,567 houses, 1% less than in the first four months of 2018, according to data from the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University and the North Texas Real Estate Information Systems.

Steve Brown, Real Estate Editor

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Fort Worth’s Cook Children’s Health plans new Prosper pediatric hospital

The town of Prosper now has two health care firms planning to build children’s hospitals along U.S. Highway 380.

Dallas-based Children’s Heath announced Thursday morning that it bought 72 acres at the Dallas North Tollway and U.S. 380 to develop a medical campus with a hosptial.

A few hours later, Fort Worth-based Cook Children’s Health Care System said it’s also building a new hospital less than three miles away in Prosper’s Windsong Ranch development.

“With more than one million patient encounters each year, Cook Children’s is proud of its far-reaching reputation that attracts patients and families from all over the world,” Rick Merrill, president and CEO of Cook Children’s Health Care System, said in a statement. “Our full intent is to offer leading edge technology and services that when combined with our integrated delivery model brings an outstanding patient and family experience.”

The Cook Children’s hospital will be located west of the tollway on Cook Children’s north campus, a 23-acre site at Windsong Parkway and U.S. 380.

The medical firm is already building a first-phase primary and urgent care services center on the property that will open this fall.

Steve Brown, Real Estate Editor

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Plano approves $1 billion redevelopment plan for Collin Creek Mall

The Plano City Council voted unanimously Monday night to grant final approval for Centurion American Development Group’s plan to redevelop Collin Creek Mall into a mixed-use project with housing, entertainment and office space.

The 100-acre project on U.S. Highway 75 would also include a Crystal Lagoon water feature, retail and entertainment venues, and a luxury hotel.

The redevelopment will have 2,300 apartments, along with houses and senior living units. There will be almost 9 acres of parks and 1.6 miles of hiking trails.

A 200-room hotel, restaurants, apartments and a water feature would be constructed in the first phase of the Collin Creek Mall project.(Centurion American Development)

A 200-room hotel, restaurants, apartments and a water feature would be constructed in the first phase of the Collin Creek Mall project.
(Centurion American Development)

Steve Brown, Real Estate Editor

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New Plano building will house hundreds more USAA workers

San Antonio-based insurer USAA has opened the addition to its Plano office campus.

The 150,000-square-foot office is in Legacy business park, east of the Dallas North Tollway on Legacy Drive.

The new building joins two existing office buildings that previously housed about 400 workers.

USAA says it now has more than 1,200 workers in its offices in Plano and Dallas.


Steve Brown, Real Estate Editor

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Planned Allen City Center project would include apartments, office and future retail

Developers are seeking approvals to build a four-block mixed-use project in the old heart of the city of Allen.

The 12-plus-acre project is planned on the east side of U.S. Highway 75 at Main Street.

Called Allen City Center, the project would include an office building and four apartment blocks with 850 urban-style residential units.

The five-story office building would face U.S. 75. The tallest buildings would be five floors.

“We bought about 40 different tracts,” developer Jim Leslie said. “We are trying to do something like Addison Circle,” the high-density residential and retail project in the heart of Addison.

The development includes a small park and space for future retail use. JHP is the architect.

Leslie, who also worked on the Frisco Square development in Frisco’s historic district, said the project would be built in several phases.

Most of the apartment development in Allen has been on the west side of U.S. 75.

The property being considered for the project is mostly vacant or occupied by older homes.

Steve Brown, Real Estate Editor

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