Q&A With Patrick Krejs on Texas Commercial Real Estate

The International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) Texas Conference will kick off Oct. 5, 2016, in Dallas, TX. Join us as we sit down with Patrick Krejs Regency’s Senior Vice President, Senior Market Officer to learn about the dynamic Texas commercial real estate market. Patrick joined Regency in 1996 and currently oversees the leasing and operations of 95 properties, as well as the development and acquisition of new projects, in 10 central states.

Headshot of Patrick Krejs.

Q: Where do you see an opportunity for growth in the Texas market?

A: Texas commercial real estate continues to thrive as the state attracts more businesses and industries, increasing its employment and housing market. Regency’s Texas portfolio boasts some of the best community shopping centers in three of the largest metro markets – Dallas-Forth Worth, Houston and Austin. Our investment team continually seeks development and redevelopment opportunities within current markets along with each of their dense, suburban neighborhoods. We have recognized demands in new markets and are exploring those opportunities.

Q: What is the next big retail sector in the Texas portfolio?

A: We have seen a steady increase in the restaurant industry, especially a demand for local, regional and national fast-casual brands. Our centers have welcomed Mod Market, Piada, Super Chix, Mod Super Fast Pizza, Torchy’s Tacos and Tarka Indian Kitchen – several of which were the first in their respective markets. To fulfill a need for health and wellness, we have seen an increase in medical offices and 24-hour medical services, boutique fitness and massage therapy studios. Soulcycle joined Woodway Collection’s retail lineup and Yoga Pod, a Colorado-based yoga studio, recently opened its first location in the Houston market at Indian Springs. Finally, we are seeing a rise in specialty and natural pet stores like Kriser’s, Natural Pawz and Hollywood Feed expand and flourish in the Texas portfolio.

Q: What property are you most excited about in 2017?

A: We are in full swing with construction on The Market at Springwoods Village in Spring, Texas. The ground-up, Kroger-anchored development is scheduled to open mid-2017. Momentum for the project has increased since our March groundbreaking, and the center is already more than 80% leased and committed. Regency formed a joint venture with CDC Houston Inc. to develop, own and manage the first grocery-anchored development in Springwoods Village, a 1,800-acre mixed-use community. We will seek LEED Silver certification for the 170,000 SF center upon completion.

Q: Have you seen social media drive business in your managing assets?

A: We’ve had great success sharing development updates about our shopping centers on the master-planned developments' social media accounts. We partner early with the master developer to tap into their already established fanbase. This early partnership allows us to create and share a development social posting schedule and provides their teams with the necessary assets to make the posts to the community. On our recently completed CityLine Market in Richardson, TX, we worked closely with KDC to provide updates on construction and new retailer signings. More recently, we began work with CDC Houston on The Market at Springwoods development and will be posting new retailer announcements and events happening on-site. 

Q: Are there any pipeline deals that you can discuss? 

A: During the upcoming ICSC Texas convention, we will present leasing opportunities for Riverstone Village. The ground-up development is situated within Riverstone, a master-planned development by Johnson Development in Sugar Land’s ETJ and ranked as the best-selling community in Texas. The center will feature more than 195,000 SF of grocery-anchored retail space.

Q: What trends they you seeing with development in Texas market?

A: We are seeing an increase of infill, mixed-use developments, both vertical and horizontal. CityLine Market and The Market at Springwoods Village are both prime examples where Regency has provided the vital retail component to a true live-work-play mixed-use development.