Trammel Crow Eases Back into Real Estate Development
Myerson, Allen R., THE JOURNAL RECORD
DALLAS _ Trammel Crow Co. is cautiously resuming real estate development, according to James D. Carreker, who took over as chief executive of the company in August.
Trammel Crow, the nation's largest real estate developer until the industry crashed in the 1980s, survived by becoming the largest real estate manager, collecting rents and sweeping floors.
"If Trammel Crow was way over here, totally a development company," Carreker said Friday in an interview, at first swinging his arms toward his right, "and then swung over here, totally a service company, I believe that pendulum is going to swing back."
Far from going back to the future, Carreker will share the profits and risks with other investors and concentrate at least as much on redevelopment _ improving older properties _ as building new ones.
Carreker said he also planned to scale back the seven regional offices that have had the power to block strategies devised at the Dallas headquarters.
Trammel Crow, which has two offices in metropolitan Oklahoma City, manages 235 million square feet of commercial space nationally, more than in all the office buildings of midtown Manhattan. Carreker wants the company to profit not only from its management fees, but also from the higher property values that renovation and improved management can create.
The company says it achieves rental and occupancy rates above those prevailing in 95 percent of its local markets.
Carreker is hunting for properties like shopping centers that can, with sprucing up and a new layout of store space, attract more, better-paying tenants.
With a higher, more predictable cash flow from these properties, other investors, including insurance companies and pension funds, would step in.
As for new projects, the company will be far more conservative than before. …