A project on a currently abandoned lot on Vickery Boulevard that has proved challenging to several developers is expected to spur new development and make the area more of a destination.
The project was recently approved for street improvement funding from the tax increment financing district for the area.
At the Aug. 3 meeting of the Near Southside tax district, the board approved an agreement with Vickery Village Development LLC for improvements to development on the north side of Vickery Boulevard, across from Stage West and PROOF.
The south side of the street is seeing good development, said Mike Brennan, president of Near Southside Inc., the organization that supports development in the Near Southside and administers the taxing district for the area.
“We’re excited to be able to partner on a streetscape and public space project looking at this site on the north side of Victory, and a short segment on the south side as well, where we have a gap in our streetscape,” he told the board members at the meeting.
The board approved $3.3 million for the streetscape and public space improvements.
The mixed-use project, called The Vickery on Near Southside, is located on the southside of Vickery, between Hemphill Street and Lipscomb Street. It sits on about 4.5 acres at 800 W. Vickery Blvd., the former location of a roofing company.
The project is led by Fort Worth’s Trademark Property Co., doing business as Vickery Village Development. Plans call for a five-story apartment building with about 300 units, about 14 units of townhomes, some commercial space and three pocket parks within the development.
“This is a site that other developers have tried to make something work here and the existing utility conditions and the flood conditions have been major impediments,” said Brennan.
The storm drains have been upsized and other methods have been used to alleviate the flooding issue, Brennan said.
The project is in an area that has recently seen more traffic as upgraded underpasses at Hemphill and Jennings streets have opened up more connectivity between downtown and the Near Southside.
Nathan Vasseur, principal at Vasseur Commercial Real Estate Services, is president of the board at Stage West, a long-running live theater located at 821 West Vickery Blvd., across from the development.
He said the new development will only help Stage West “as we continue to grow and reach out to the many people moving into the area.”
Stage West recently completed some major renovations to its facilities, upgrading the theater, rehearsal and cafe spaces.
Vasseur also sees the infrastructure improvements as key to drawing more people to the area, turning it into more of a destination.
“Those improvements are exciting to hear because they will make the area more of a destination,” he said. “This will help us get our message out about Stage West and all we offer.”
Near Southside’s Brennan said that section of Vickery Boulevard has seen lots of activity recently, led by M2G Ventures’ historic adaptive reuse project at 901 W. Vickery Blvd. That project saw M2G redevelop a building built nearly a century ago by Adkins-Polk Whole Grocery and was then refurbished as the first home of Firestone & Robertson Distilling Co., makers of TXWhiskey.
The building is now home to a roster of tenants from a bowling alley, a law firm, an architecture firm to a marketing firm.
Brennan said Vickery Boulevard is one of the five main streets included in the Near Southside. Those six streets are South Main, Evans Avenue, Rosedale, Magnolia, Park Place and Vickery Boulevard.
“All of the investments that have been made on the public side and private side have been to turn those into significant destinations,” he said.
Bob Francis is business editor for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.