Four years after it was announced, Frisco’s $10 billion Fields community is entering a new phase in its evolution into one of the region’s hottest developments.
The first residents should be living in the 2,500-acre mega-project at the Dallas North Tollway and Panther Creek Parkway by the end of this year.
And companies are eyeing nearby building sites for future employment centers, retail and entertainment.
The just-announced 97-acre Universal Parks and Resorts theme park on the tollway is one of the largest additions so far to the project, which also includes the PGA of America’s new golf resort.
“For the next 10 to 20 years, Fields will be an amazing project to watch happen,” Plano-based builder John Landon said.
His Landon Homes just bought land to build 1,200 houses in the community — Fields’ largest single-family property purchase yet.
The project, which stretches between Preston Road and U.S. Highway 380, is planned to include as many as 14,000 homes and apartments plus commercial space.
Landon said he began talking to the Fields developers four years ago.
“I think it’s going to be one of the top master-planned communities in the U.S.,” he said.
That was the plan from the beginning. The project launched in 2018 when Hunt Realty and Karahan Cos. teamed up to acquire the largest remaining vacant property in Frisco from the estate of the late Dallas businessman Bert Fields. Investors Chief Partners and Crosstie Capital partnered on the massive property.
Just a few months later, the PGA of America said it would move from Florida to the Fields project and build two golf courses, a resort and a headquarters building. The headquarters opened last August, and the Omni PGA Frisco Resort, overlooking the 660-acre PGA campus, is scheduled to open in May. The golf courses are to open this spring.
“The pace of activity at Fields has far exceeded that of our original expectations,” said Chris Kleinert, CEO and president of Hunt Investment Holdings, which oversees Hunt Realty.
Kleinert said when the property was purchased in 2018, he expected it to be a multi-decade development.
“Today, a little over four years since the acquisition, roads are being built, home sites are being prepared, demand for locating at Fields is high amongst office, retail and restaurant users, and there are several more exciting things we will be bringing to Fields once details are finalized,” he said. “We have always intended Fields to be a thoughtfully designed, integrated live, work and recreate destination, and these plans are coming together much faster than we could have possibly imagined.”
Along with the homes and commercial space, Fields has set aside more than 250 acres for parks and open spaces, including 25 miles of trails.
A steady stream of projects have been announced at Fields in the last four years, including two new mixed-use commercial developments on the tollway and U.S. 380.
Developer Fehmi Karahan said the success of Fields so far is even greater than he envisioned.
“It’s incredible what’s happening, and I’m shocked at how much interest we have,” Karahan said. “This is 10 times bigger than Legacy West,” his last highly successful development, about seven miles south in Plano.
Karahan said multiple businesses are talking with developer KDC about planned offices in the 180-acre Fields West mixed-use project along the tollway.
“Retailers are saying they want to be part of this development,” Karahan said.
Diane Hornquist works with the general counsel to oversee legal activities associated with various land development and operating company initiatives. Hornquist began her legal career at the Dallas office of Jackson Walker LLP in the real estate section.
Mike Wallace is responsible for all aspects of Hunt Realty Investments overseeing the firm’s direct-owned real estate portfolio, operating company investments and other real estate activities. He is responsible for sourcing and structuring all new investment activity, as well as Hunt Realty’s interaction and investment relationship with other Hunt-related entities.
Throughout his career, he has been involved in investments in single-assets, real estate portfolios, distressed loan portfolios and private and publicly-traded companies including equity, preferred equity, mezzanine and participating debt investments. His experience spans a broad array of product sectors including office, multi-family, hospitality, retail, senior living, student housing, industrial, residential and land.
Prior to joining Hunt Realty, Wallace was with The Hampstead Group, a Dallas-based real estate private equity fund which invested approximately $1 billion on behalf of institutional and private investors. While at The Hampstead Group, his responsibilities included new investment opportunities in real estate portfolios, publicly-traded companies and distressed loan portfolio acquisitions as well as management of the fund’s investments. He also previously worked for EFO Realty, a real estate opportunity fund where he sourced and structured joint-venture equity investments.
Chris Kleinert is CEO and president of Hunt Consolidated Investments, LLC, and Co-CEO of its holding company, Hunt Consolidated, Inc. He is president of Hunt Realty Investments and oversees the operations of both Hunt Investment Group and Hoodoo Land and Cattle Company, as well as the financial activities of the holding company. Other business interests of Hunt Consolidated, Inc. include oil and gas exploration and production, petroleum refining, electric power generation and transmission. Kleinert’s affiliation with Hunt Consolidated began in 1996. Kleinert received an MBA with a concentration in finance from Texas Christian University and a BBA in marketing from Southern Methodist University. Prior to joining Hunt, he was employed by Texas Commerce Bank (now JPMorgan Chase) and General Mills. Kleinert serves on the Investment Committee of the Board of Trustees of Southern Methodist University and SMU’s Tate Lecture Board of Directors. He also serves on the Neeley School of Business International Board of Visitors at Texas Christian University, the Board of Trustees of the Communities Foundation of Texas, the Board of Directors of Amegy Bank -Dallas, and the Dallas Regional Chamber’s Board of Directors. Kleinert chairs the Board of Directors of the newly created Men’s Advocacy Group for New Friends New Life. In 2009, Chris and his wife, Ashlee, founded Executives in Action (EIA), a nonprofit organization that leveraged the talent and expertise of executives in transition with local charitable organizations to enhance their productivity, efficiency and overall impact. In 2016, EIA merged 4 with New York-based Catchafire, Inc. to form Catchafire North Texas and expand the number of volunteers and nonprofits that can be matched nationally.