Daily dog walkers and weekend joggers prize Dallas’ Turtle Creek corridor for its urban parks and open space.

The meandering creek running north of Uptown has also caught the eye of developers. Almost $2 billion in new real estate projects are in the works along the waterway.

“You are going to see at least five cranes all coming out of the ground at the same time,” said property broker Newt Walker, who has sold sites in the area for decades. “Turtle Creek has been a sleepy stepchild for a long time, and all of a sudden, it blossomed.

“It is one of those situations where all the stars aligned,” he said.

The brightest star on Turtle Creek is the $750 million luxury Four Seasons hotel and condo tower planned at Turtle Creek Boulevard and Cedar Springs Road.

The high-rise with a 5-star hotel and luxury residences is being built on a vacant block that Dallas’ Perot family acquired years ago.

The Perot’s Hillwood firm built its headquarters on Turtle Creek seven years ago when not much else was happening in the area. “We saw what was great real estate in a great location,” said Ross Perot Jr. “You are between the Park Cities, downtown and Uptown.

“That whole area is really coming together, and it’s great to see the redevelopment going on.”

Hillwood is providing the land for the new Four Seasons. Award-winning architectural firm Pelli Clarke Pelli is designing the tower, which will be more than 20 stories.

Perot said the Four Seasons project will focus more interest in the area.

“It’s going to be a great 10 years for Turtle Creek,” Perot said.

One of neighborhood’s existing landmarks — the 4-decade-old Mansion on Turtle Creek Hotel — just sold to a Dallas-based investment group.

HN Capital Partners bought the 142-room, nine-story luxury hotel and adjoining restaurant. The new owners plan to polish this Turtle Creek gem.

“My goal is going to be to bring some real amenities in food and beverage and wellness to the Mansion,” said Vipin Nambiar, founder of HN Capital Partners. “I think those interventions start to make the neighborhood a bit more vibrant, albeit for a luxury customer.

“The Four Seasons will do the same,” he said. “I can see parcels around the two hotels becoming sought after for residential rentals or condos.”

Developers recently announced plans for several new communities on sites along Turtle Creek and the adjoining Katy Trail:

  • Houston-based developer Hanover Co. and GID Investment Advisers are building a $170 million, 21-story apartment tower at 2525 Turtle Creek Blvd. near Fairmount Street. The luxury rental project will be constructed on the site of the Turtle Creek Gardens condominiums.
  • Next door, California-based Nexus Development Corp. plans to build a 25-story residential tower at the vacant corner of Turtle Creek Boulevard and Fairmount Street. The Vivante at Turtle Creek tower would include a combination of market and seniors’ residential units.
  • In the same block at 2727 Turtle Creek Blvd., Colorado-based apartment builder UDR Inc. bought 5 acres where it plans to build two or more towers.
  • On the east side of Turtle Creek and the Katy Trail, along Carlisle Street, Dallas developer Lincoln Property Co. has broken ground on a more than 300-unit apartment development that will replace 115 aging condominiums on the site.
  • At Carlisle and Hall Street overlooking Turtle Creek, Lang Partners plans to construct a residential high-rise and rowhouses on property that’s occupied by a 1960s rental community.

“The proximity to Turtle Creek Park is important,” Lang Partners’ Dirik Oudt said. “It’s a beautiful park and kind of has a feeling of Central Park.”

With so many projects on the way, land costs along Turtle Creek have escalated.

Recent sales have topped $400 per square foot, said property broker Mike Turner.

“You have so many people looking at so many sites, things get ginned up,” Turner said.

Michael Swaldi, senior managing director with Jones Lang LaSalle, said the surge in property sales “just speaks to the best-in-class nature of the Turtle Creek neighborhood.”

“You are two minutes from Uptown, five minutes to downtown, you can step right on to the Katy Trail,” Swaldi said. “And you are right next door to our only 5-star hotel, and our newest 5-star hotel is coming to this same area.

“It’s as good as it gets in a market that is considered one the very best markets in the U.S. to build new high-quality projects.”

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