ExxonMobil campus “best piece of property” in sunbelt

Capital Commercial Investments is top investor of Texas corporate campuses

Doug Agarwal with 5959 Las Colinas Blvd
Doug Agarwal with 5959 Las Colinas Blvd (Loopnet, Getty, LinkedIn)

Capital Commercial Investments racked up hefty debt acquiring massive commercial assets at a time when no one was in the office. The gamble seems to be paying off.

“We’ve found a way to bring these high-quality assets back to the market,” Agarwal told the Dallas Morning News. “We activate them with food courts, health and wellness, social hubs, outdoor workspaces, child care.”

A trophy of Capital Commercial’s more than 7 million square feet of North Texas real estate is the ExxonMobil campus in Irving’s Las Colinas area, which it acquired in December.

The 365,000-square-foot headquarters building sits on a lake surrounded by 290 grassy acres.

“I’ve had some of the top-five real estate guys in the state tell me that’s the last remaining urban parcel of its size and nature — the best piece of property from California to Florida for development,” Agarwal told the DMN. “It’s a 1,000-year asset in my opinion.”

The ExxonMobil offices, built in 1996 after Exxon moved its head offices to North Texas from Manhattan, won’t be available until the big energy firm relocates to Houston late this year or in early 2024. Following a revamp of the property, Capital Commercial says it will immediately begin to look for corporations to lease this sprawling campus.

“A large corporation moving to Irving — the next guy on the list — may want to own this building,” Agarwal said. “I don’t think you could reproduce it for less than $700 per square foot wholesale today.”

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Capital Commercial CEO Doug Agarwal and Plano Legacy West (Capital Commercial, Legacy West, Getty)
JCPenney returns to Plano HQ next spring

Capital Commercial has collected a top-notch roster of campuses across the Lone Star State, including American Airlines’ former headquarters south of DFW International Airport as well as J.C. Penney’s headquarters complex in Plano. Its latest acquisition is Exxon Mobil’s almost 300-acre Las Colinas campus, which it closed on just in time for Christmas.

The Austin-based company currently reigns as the biggest landlord of major North Texas business campuses, controlling more than 7 million square feet of North Texas real estate. Overall, it oversees more than $1.5 billion in properties in Texas, Arizona, Colorado, Alabama and Tennessee.

“At one point last year, we were the largest individual owner of office buildings in the state of Texas,” said Doug Agarwal, who founded Capital Commercial in 1992 to look for undervalued real estate across the country.

“Buy it, fix it, fill it” is the modus operandi, and the company is on its seventh campus, he said.

Since acquiring the 1.4 million square-foot American Airlines campus in 2020, Agarwal’s firm has leased just under two-thirds of the space to Lockheed Martin. Meanwhile, JCPenney announced it will return to the space Capital Commercial bought in late 2021 for more than $400 million. Penney’s will be renting more than 300,000 square feet of offices in its old Plano campus.

Maddy Sperling

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