Dallas-based August Real Estate Co., a real estate development-focused family office co-founded by Dallas natives, brothers Evan and Jordan August, recently announced the redevelopment of two iconic buildings in the historic Deep Ellum neighborhood, The Continental Gin Building and 333 1st Avenue.
With over 100,000 square feet under ownership, August Real Estate Co. is focused on developing urban, creative mixed-use spaces for businesses and individuals. Evan and Jordan both have extensive and diversified experience in the DFW commercial real estate market and beyond.
Evan brings 15 years of investment sales experience, participating in more than $10 billion of transactions in addition to initiating the launch of Eastdil Secured’s Texas office, where he advised on the sale of many large-scale office assets across the state. Jordan’s background ranges from investment sales and finance to architectural design, construction management and development. He has extensive experience in the DFW metroplex including assisting in the financing and development of the Statler Hotel in downtown Dallas. Their father, Tom August, serves as chairman of August Real Estate Co., focusing on strategy and oversight and brings more than 40 years of executive level experience that includes CEO roles at both Prentiss Properties and EOP, Blackstone’s office platform.
The company’s first two projects mark their foray into the development of creative office space, showcasing their approach to building out modern spaces with intent, ensuring each project’s design will endure for future generations.
“Longevity is important to us—we want to create a portfolio of special assets that serve a purpose in our community and will survive for future generations,” said Evan. “With an asset like The Continental Gin Building, we are restoring, rather than redeveloping, an iconic part of the Deep Ellum neighborhood that will honor the building’s history while also creating a modern space with current amenities and technology that will attract today’s creative tenants.”
Built in 1888, The Continental Gin Building restoration is well underway with improvements. The building has been designed to provide a boutique hotel feel taking advantage of its impressive 14-foot ceilings, exposed wood beams and hardwood floors. August Real Estate Co. repurposed the large freight elevator into a feature internal stairwell, replaced dock doors with glass windows and storefronts and expanded the front loading dock into a wrap-around deck.
The upgraded building also boasts amenities for the modern user including food and beverage options, Wi-Fi throughout, shared conferencing, massive patio and plaza areas, showers on every floor and immediate access to the Santa Fe Trail that feeds into East Dallas and connects to the White Rock Lake trail. The two-acre site is significant for Deep Ellum, allowing for pockets of outdoor green space and abundant surface parking. There are numerous energy efficient upgrades, including solar panels on the roof and front canopy, that will contribute to the building’s LEED Silver Certification.
Pre-leasing activity has been exceptionally strong. Common Desk is leasing and managing the space and has already committed to nearly 22,000 square feet. Fiction Coffee will operate in the main building lobby. August Real Estate Co. will also deliver 22,000 square feet of spec suites that can accommodate needs starting at 1,100 square feet but can be combined for a full-floor user.
The restoration of The Continental Gin Building, as well as all future August Real Estate Co. developments will feature upgraded health and safety measures to meet today’s new standards including hospital-grade air filtration, UV light systems, touchless fixtures in restrooms and anti-microbial surfaces. These upgrades combined with convenient surface parking will allow Continental Gin Building tenants a touchless route all the way to their desk.
“With our long-standing history in Dallas and in the industry overall, we are bringing a new approach to urban development, investing in the community and offering a fresh perspective on the workplace of the future,” Jordan said. “Our diversified experience gives us a unique perspective on what potential tenants are looking for in a commercial space—flexible leasing and workplace configurations that are not only safe and clean, but also positively impact an employee’s well-being.”
Renovations recently began on August Real Estate Co.’s second project, 333 1st Avenue, which was built in 1926 and last renovated in 2006. Most recently occupied by Nordstrom’s Trunk Club, the building offers over 36,000 square feet of impressive creative office space and an unrivaled 4:1,000-square-foot parking ratio. Limited column disruption and large open spaces offer optimal flexibility for tenants while the 16-foot ceilings and large windows provide an abundance of natural light. August Real Estate Co.’s new improvements will include exterior building upgrades, the construction of a new brick and glass circulation tower that will house a new passenger elevator and a feature stairwell, extensive hardscape improvements including a new Uber-friendly drop-off zone and upgraded landscaping throughout the 1.5-acre site. CBRE is the leasing team for the project.
In a market where tenants are increasingly searching for flexible leasing options, both The Continental Gin Building and 333 1st Avenue offer flexible lease options and customizable spaces. The Continental Gin Building is set for completion in the first quarter of 2021 while 333 1st Avenue is scheduled for completion in the second quarter of 2021, but select space is currently available for build-out while renovations on the project are underway.