Irving City Council Approves Incentive Plan to Pull Big Gulp Big Wigs Out of Dallas


711The 7-Eleven headquarters have been a staple of downtown Dallas for decades. However, the convenient store giant seems ready to make a move after relocating to the Arts District just six years ago. Real estate brokers have confirmed that the company wants to move to a more suburban setting, and Irving might be the destination.

“7-Eleven wants to get out of downtown,” said a broker close to the transaction but chose to remain anonymous. “They want to get up north where their people live.”

In early April, Irving’s City Council approved an incentives plan meant to lure 7-Eleven and its 1,250 employees away from Dallas. Adding the company, Dallas-Fort Worth’s largest private employer, according to the Dallas Business Journal Book of Lists, would be significant for Irving.

“I applaud city staff and the Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce for their diligent work on this project,” said Mayor Beth Van Duyne. The vote was nearly unanimous as 8 approved and just 1 did not.

Part of the incentive agreement is that 7-Eleven will move to a 300,000-squar-foot office campus that has a 500 car parking garage at the corner of I-635 and Ranch Trail. In order to hold up their end of the bargain, 7-Eleven will have to generate more than $15 million in sales annually and keep more than $1 million worth of business personal property at the new office. They would also have to complete the move by December 31, 2016. They are expected to sign a 15-year lease.

If it meets those requirements, “The retailer could receive an average of a 74 percent rebate of the sales tax generated during the first seven years of the agreement and an average of 88 percent of the ad valorem tax on business personal property for the first six years of the agreement, according to city documents,” notes Dallas Business Journal staff writer Candace Carlisle.

“It’s common for businesses to liquidate their office furniture and equipment, rather than pack and move everything to a new location, so this could be very lucrative for commercial interiors vendors,” explains Alec Lopez, CFO of SitBetter.

Not surprisingly, Downtown Dallas business leaders are disappointed by the move. However, optimism seems to be prevailing, at least publicly.

“Fortunately, this is a rare occurrence at this day and time, when downtown is buzzing with new life — residents, green space, art, culture and major development,” said the CEO of the economic development group Downtown Dallas Inc., John Crawford.

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