Texas A&M’s Fort Worth project takes fuller shape
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As the groundbreaking for the new Texas A&M University-Fort Worth campus nears, the major players and interested parties say the potential impact on the city is taking shape.
Jesus Chapa, principal at J Chapa Strategic Solutions LLC, one of the speakers at an Urban Land Institute event on the project held on March 30, said a main goal of the A&M developers is to create “new jobs, new innovation in Fort Worth, the expansion of Fort Worth overall.”
Companies in Fort Worth or companies that co-locate at the campus should see growth.
“It’s those kinds of things are what we’re looking to establish with this kind of project,” he said.
Those plans are moving forward even before the first shovels turn dirt on the project, which is expected to happen later this summer.
The university has recently hired an executive director for the Fort Worth-Tarrant County Innovation Partnership, which is being funded by $4 million split evenly between the city and the county. That organization, which was previously known as Fort Worth Now, will act to coordinate between the school and the developers and potential corporate and other tenants.
“Our job is to work on behalf of the city and the county, as they funded this organization, to ensure that we bring the best of Fort Worth and the county and Texas A&M together to maximize the success of this project,” said Darryl Heath, executive director of the Fort Worth-Tarrant Innovation Partnership.
The organization is putting together a plan and a strategy for how businesses will be able to engage with the new campus, Heath said.
“Obviously the construction will take a while, but we are looking forward to the partnerships in a lot of different industries that the new education district will be able to have,” he said. “I don’t have a direct way yet that industries can engage with us, but it’s coming. We’re just on the front end of a plan right now.”
Heath lives in Tarrant County and graduated from Texas A&M University with a degree in industrial engineering. He spent much of his career working for professional services company Accenture.
Andy Taft, president of Downtown Fort Worth Inc., also spoke at the program. He said there is an unprecedented opportunity for development near the new Texas A&M campus.
“If you include the Butler Place land, there are 115 acres of redevelopment properties,” he said.
In November 2021, Texas A&M University announced plans to build a top-tier research campus on land downtown where it currently has the Texas A&M School of Law. The development was dubbed “Aggieland North,” at the time but has been formerly named Texas A&M-Fort Worth.
The planned research campus will include a high-rise complex that will house classrooms, labs, research and “maker” spaces that can be used by the public and private sectors for academic programs, workforce training and collaborative research. There will be three new buildings at the campus.
Texas A&M-Fort Worth is planned to offer a range of programs from Texas A&M University, Tarleton State University, and several A&M System agencies.
Stantec will serve as the architect of record for the Law & Education building with design architect Pelli Clarke & Partners assisting with labs. Construction management teams include Turner Construction Company, CARCON Industries, Source Building Group Inc. and Dikita Enterprises.Bob Francis is business editor for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at email@example.com. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policyhere.