Photo: Artist rendering of the Pioneer Natural Resources headquarters to be built at Verizon’s $1.5 billion Hidden Ridge development.
Irving hit a new record, issuing more than $1.1 billion in construction permitting this fiscal year, topping last year by 34 percent. City staff expects the number to increase by fiscal year-end. This comes as fast-casual restaurant chain, Pei Wei Asian Diner LLC, prepares to move its corporate headquarters to Irving from Scottsdale, Arizona.
“Investors are pouring into Irving, and the projects they are building range from new hotels to corporate office parks, restaurants to new single-family homes,” said Irving City Manager Chris Hillman. “Irving is truly a city on the rise.”
Pioneer Natural Resources is 2017’s largest investor at $213 million for its new corporate office park. That project is currently under construction on Verizon’s $1.5 billion Hidden Ridge development.
The Westin Hotel at the Irving Convention Center ranked second at $82 million. The upscale hotel will serve the Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas and the massive $180 million Toyota Music Factory, Irving’s new entertainment destination. The Pavilion, the development’s 8,000-seat concert hall, will be surrounded by more than 20 restaurant and retail facilities, which are to open during the fall and winter.
Medical facilities; warehouses and shell warehouses; large apartment complexes; and additional restaurant and retail also rank in the multimillion-plus range on the Irving permit list. Irving leadership attributes much of the city’s success to its accelerated process. Speedy permitting translates to additional economic development, lower construction costs and increased tax revenues, according to a PricewaterhouseCoopers study.
For the past nine years, Irving has completed new commercial plan reviews in less than six days. The timeframe is shorter than industry best practices, which is defined as 90 percent of the permitting reviews completed in 20 to 30 working days or less. Location and transportation systems also contribute to Irving’s development boom.
“We have massive transportation corridors running through and around us, and several of those are part of the Texas Transportation Commission’s $847.6 million upgrade. Investors consider our major highways, as well as our next door neighbor, the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, and they’re knocking down the door to talk to us,” said Scott Connell, Irving economic development director. “Just this year, we have gained huge corporate move-ins and expansions, like Atos, Cognizant and QTS. It’s safe to say, Irving’s investor interest pipeline is quite full.”
Additionally, Irving’s powerhouse national and international corporations continue to create high-paying jobs that help attract new residents to Irving. The city will add nearly 700 single-family homes to satisfy demand this year, with indications that a strong housing trend will continue into next year.
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