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Posted on: June 6, 2019

Aimbridge Hospitality to Expand Operations

Aimbridge Hospitality, the country's largest independent hotel investment and management firm, plans to expand its corporate office in North Texas to a yet-to-be built office building in Legacy Business Park in Plano, Texas.

The proposed four-story, 200,000-square-foot building, called HQ53, will break ground in September on a tract at 5300 Headquarters Drive near Preston Road in Legacy Business Park, a 2,655-acre business park employing roughly 60,000 people at corporate giants such as Toyota North America, NTT Data, Frito-Lay, McAfee and JPMorgan Chase.

Aimbridge Hospitality is increasing its footprint by more than 140% in moving into about 75,000 square feet that spans the entire fourth floor and half of the third floor in HQ53. The firm is expected to make the move once construction is finished in September 2020. Brokers involved with the deal were not immediately disclosed.

Aimbridge Hospitality's Chairman and Chief Executive Dave Johnson said the firm's executives are working in partnership with developer Cawley Partners to make this new hotel support center at HQ53 "a great environment" for employees.

Johnson and his team are expected to expand from about 53,100 square feet the company was subleasing at Legacy Union One at 5851 Legacy Circle, which is about a mile away from HQ53. The company has been subleasing the space from Encana Oil & Gas, which restructured its U.S. operations and closed its regional North Texas office, a 12-story, 319,000-square-foot build-to-suit in Plano. The building on Legacy Circle is now owned by TIER REIT Inc., which is an entity being acquired by Cousins Properties.

Bill Cawley, chairman and chief executive of Dallas-based Cawley Partners, said he was thrilled to have Aimbridge as a lead tenant for HQ53 and looks forward to providing a new office building to them and other tenants.

"They've just had so much growth, they needed to find an alternative location," Cawley said in an interview. "We had the product they wanted at a time when they needed more space. They will be very involved in designing out there space and we are very excited to have them."

In all, the project is designed with 50,000-square-foot floorplates and a high parking ratio of six parking spaces per 1,000 square feet, with roughly half of those spaces in a structured garage and the remainder as surface parking. About 37% of the new building is leased to Aimbridge, but Cawley said he expects that interest to grow now that a lead tenant is bringing its headquarters to the building.

Plano's Legacy Business Park is one of the most sought-after areas of Dallas for office space, with a premium on office rates. The average asking rate in this area of Plano is $32.35 per square foot, compared with the regional average asking rate of $25.81 per square foot, according to CoStar data. The West Plano area also has about 732,000 square feet of new office space in its construction pipeline.

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