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Dallas Stars Owner Buys Fort Worth's Historic W.T. Waggoner Building

Tom Gaglardi's Canadian-based Firm Could Put a Hotel in the Historic Downtown Fort Worth Tower
August 8, 2018
The owner of the NHL's Dallas Stars has expanded his real estate footprint in North Texas with the acquisition of a historic 1920s-era office building and surface parking lot in downtown Fort Worth, TX, ripe for a conversion to a hotel.

Tom Gaglardi, through his real estate company Northland Properties, acquired the 20-story, 119,846-square-foot W.T. Waggoner Building at 810 Houston St., which could be converted into a hotel branded by a Northland affiliated hotel group. Northland is the parent company of Sandman Hotel Group and The Sutton Place Hotels.

"The historical relevance of the W.T. Waggoner Building makes this the perfect hotel asset for us," said Gaglardi, president and chief executive officer of Vancouver, British Columbia-based Northland Properties, in a statement.

"With the opening of our first hotel in Plano in the next few weeks, we are excited to continue to expand throughout Texas, and we think Fort Worth is a fantastic market for us to grow into," he added.

The 300-room Sandman Signature Plano-Frisco hotel in Plano was completed in June 2018, according to CoStar data.

The ground floor and elevator lobby of Fort Worth's historic W.T. Waggoner Building was restored in 2003 to match the original finishes dating back to the building's first tenant, Continental National Bank. Along with the building, a surface-level parking lot -- one of Fort Worth's few remaining tracts in the city's inner core -- was included in the deal.

The would-be development site helped bring in a lot of interest from potential buyers, said Ryan Matthews, an executive vice president in Jones Lang LaSalle's Fort Worth office who represented the seller, XTO Energy, in the deal.

"We had momentum from the four previous dispositions that helped drive that interest," Matthews told CoStar News. "Those looking at the property were also interested in the historical significance of the building, the size of the building and the largest undeveloped surface lot in downtown Fort Worth.

"That lot gives a new owner a lot of different avenues for future opportunities," he added.

CBRE's David Walters and Marty Neilon represented Northland in the building acquisition. The details on a potential new hotel in the building or adjacent tract was not immediately available Tuesday.

Along with the two hotel groups, Northland Properties also owns Moxie's Grill & Bar in Uptown, the AHL's Texas Stars and Shark Club Sports Bar & Grill.

JLL is also overseeing the marketing of 714 Main St. on behalf of XTO Energy, which is the last office tower the energy firm plans to sell in downtown Fort Worth.

XTO Energy has been consolidating thousands of its North Texas jobs in Exxon Mobil's sprawling Houston campus. The company is also upgrading the adjacent office building next to the Main Street property for its continued regional operations.

The JLL marketing team is in the final stages of selecting a potential buyer for 714 Main St., with plans to have it under contract by this fall. XTO's decision to sell off the majority of its North Texas real estate holdings has been a rare opportunity for new investors to own part of Fort Worth's central business district, Matthews said.

"XTO had purchased a lot of older, historic buildings over the years and renovated them for their office use," Matthews said. "The interest level from potential buyers is a testament to their stewardship and how they left the condition of those buildings. There has been a lot of interest."

Candace Carlisle, Dallas-Fort Worth Reporter  CoStar Group   
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