Texas Tech University's UrbanTech Design Center announces Agrari - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Texas Tech University's UrbanTech Design Center announces Agrarian Community Project

Source: UrbanTech Source: UrbanTech
Source: UrbanTech Source: UrbanTech
Source: UrbanTech Source: UrbanTech
Source: UrbanTech Source: UrbanTech

Provided by Texas Tech University

UrbanTech, along with Texas Investment Partners, announced the plans for its Regis Park project at a news conference preceding April's First Friday Art Trail.

Texas Tech University's UrbanTech Design Center, part of Texas Tech's College of Architecture (CoA), unveiled its Regis Park project at the Innovation Hub at Research Park today (April 6).

The Regis Park project came about when Texas Investment Partners reached out to David Driskill, director of UrbanTech and an associate professor in the CoA, for help in developing a substantial plot of land that had been purchased by the company.

"In 2007, we purchased a 288-acre property near Preston Smith International Airport," said Robert Dwyer, managing partner at Dominion Real Estate Partners, managing company of Texas Investment Partners. "It originally had all been zoned industrial, but we recognized that was probably not the best use for the property, so we asked David for fresh ideas on what to do with the land."

They decided to use the land to build an agrarian, or agricultural, community, including an equestrian K-12 charter school, horse trails, multifamily housing, commercial properties and an enclosed, 8,000-seat horse arena for dressage and rodeo competitions that also can be used for other events.

"When Robert came to us for ideas on the property, the only way Texas Tech could get involved was if we could define it as a research project," Driskill said. "So, we engaged in defining what a sustainable industrial project would be. It didn't take us long to get to the conclusion. If you look at the way the city of Lubbock is zoned, it's almost 100 percent industrial to the northeast and 100 percent residential with some retail to the southwest, meaning it's difficult to live close to where you work, which is a major sustainable principle.

"Now, we really have a complete mix-use community, which is agrarian with horse trails all the way through it. It's sustainable in that we want to hold two inches of water on the site. Around the playa lake, backing off a safe, sustainable distance, is where the most expensive housing will be. There also will be a full range of retail, multifamily housing, lower-end housing and middle-end housing."

Roy Jones, commercial sales manager at Armstrong Plumbing, Air and Electric, was brought onto the project to provide systems at Regis Park that would cut the heating and cooling costs by half. But he's also a massive supporter of the equestrian side of the project from working with the ABC Rodeo for 30 years.

"I've been working with Robert and David to make sure the 8,000-seat arena and multi-use facility might work for the ABC Rodeo, which is an important aspect for the community," he said. "Lubbock hasn't built a new equestrian facility in years, but cities like Midland, Odessa and Amarillo have. Event promoters say they want to come to Lubbock because it's one of the bigger areas that can be easily accessed from different locations, so the new facility will help make that happen. It's a great opportunity for Lubbock to have something different, and the location to the airport is going to be a really nice addition."

Donna Currey Barnes, certified paralegal, graduate of the realtor institute and a commercial realtor with Westar Commercial Realty, is the listing agent for the Regis Park property development. She has a positive outlook for the potential the Regis Park development holds.

"This has been a long time coming, and the time is right," Barnes said. "This agrarian community is necessary for the area. It's going to be a tremendous benefit for the northeast development and a support system for the citizens of Lubbock. We're looking to invite developers for opportunities to construct retail strip centers, offices, restaurants and residential homes. Construction for a hotel by the airport is planned, allowing service and convenience for people traveling to and from Lubbock and surrounding areas. We're all working toward a mutually beneficial objective for the people of Lubbock."

Developers interested in construction opportunities can contact Donna Currey Barnes at dbarnes@lubbockwestar.com.

The goal is to have the entire community completely developed in 15-20 years.

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