Developers have quietly bought several blocks in Dallas’ Oak Lawn neighborhood with an eye toward doing a major mixed-use project.

Almost three blocks along busy Maple Avenue have been purchased by two real estate companies created by MQ Development, a Dallas-based shopping center firm. The companies have purchased more than three dozen properties over more than a year, Dallas County records show.

Most of the property is on the south side of Maple, stretching about three blocks between Wycliff Avenue and Lucas Drive. The purchases include automotive businesses, small retail buildings and offices.

The buyers also have bought several blocks of small homes in the area behind the business strip.

MQ Development officials would not reveal details about their plans, but the area is already seeing a lot of redevelopment.

“We’ve taken a position over there — we’ve bought quite a bit,” said MQ Development CEO Don Silverman. But Silverman said it was premature to talk about any plans for the big chunk of Oak Lawn real estate.

The acquisition is one of the largest such assemblies of properties in years in Oak Lawn.

“It’s very hard to assemble property over there,” said investor Leland Burk, who sold the corner of Wycliff and Maple to Silverman’s group. “But I think it’s an area that would be great for redevelopment.”

Maple Avenue is already seeing big changes. Crow Holdings’ development of the Old Parkland campus at Maple and Oak Lawn has brought new office tenants to the area. And construction of several apartment projects just east of Maple has increased residential population in the area.

Farther north, retail and apartments are being built near the new Parkland Hospital.

“So many new apartments have gone up from Parkland all the way to Inwood Road,” said property broker Newt Walker. “Everybody has been playing off the growth in the medical district.

“It’s just a question of what is the depth of that market,” Walker said. “I don’t think any of us have an answer to that yet.”

Builders are already making moves in the residential blocks between Maple and Harry Hines Boulevard, buying up old homes and property to build houses and townhomes.

The real estate MQ Development is acquiring includes sites for residential building.

Silverman has experience with blocking up close-in property for redevelopment. More than a decade ago, he was part of a group that blocked up several blocks on downtown Dallas’ near east side for construction of the City Lights development.

 

MQ Devestateent has done shopping center projects in Prosper, Southlake, Roanoke, Dallas and Florida.Demolition crews recently knocked down a building on the corner of Maple and Wycliff, one of the properties sold to developers.(Steve Brown/Staff)Demolition crews recently knocked down a building on the corner of Maple and Wycliff, one of the properties sold to developers.
(Steve Brown/Staff)