Curtis Shore stood before the Flower Mound Town Council on Monday to talk about good days ahead for Parker Square.
They were welcome words to town leaders who have watched the once-promising development turn into a ghost town years ago, only to be brought back to life again over the last year.
Shore, one of the investors of the center, described plans coming up in the near future for Parker Square, which sits along Cross Timbers Road in east Flower Mound.
Among the most immediate is the growing likelihood of a temporary farmers market, which would provide multiple benefits.
For one, the town's farmers market in the Town Hall parking lot has proven to be so successful that it has led to some parking issues.
Residents have taken to social media over the last month to encourage moving the farmers market to Parker Square, and Shore said investors would welcome that.
“Whatever mechanism needs to be done, we support that,” Shore said.
In fact, Councilman Don McDaniel requested an amendment to be placed on the next council agenda to allow for the move.
“Moving the farmers market there is a win for everyone,” McDaniel said. “Not the least of which is Parker Square.”
McDaniel noted the number of people that would suddenly flock to Parker Square. As it stands now, the farmers market at Town Hall has averaged 2,000 to 2,500 people each week. McDaniel said representatives from Four Seasons, which runs the farmers market, have indicated that moving the event to Parker Square could attract about 25 more vendors, bringing the total to 80.
“At that size, it becomes one of the largest farmers markets in the region, and at that point become a regional draw,” McDaniel said. “As the farmers market does well, Parker Square does well, the town does well and ultimately The River Walk does well because we’re moving over a flushed out regional farmers market.”
Bobby Dollak, senior project engineer for G&A Consultants, said this week that the farmers market space at The River Walk is expected to be complete within the year.
But the farmers market is just one of the big plans ahead. Shore said he wants Parker Square to once again host community events, and the recent restoration of the gazebo should spark those, he said.
“It's worthy of being the center of events,” Shore said.
In addition, Parker Square is set to host a food truck event in October.
Shore briefly described the evolution of Parker Square, which began with a vision of strong retail. Now, the focus has shifted.
“Parker Square is not what it was originally,” Shore said. “The market dictates the transition to office and quasi-retail with restaurants and services.”
Shore and other investors purchased five of the nine buildings within Parker Square from an Austin-based group about a year ago. Since then, they have renovated the buildings to bring in new tenants.
“We contracted with them thinking that this is economically viable,” Shore said.
The space was 50 percent leased when Shore's group took over, and he said today it's 75 percent leased. Among the newcomers are several one- and two-person entrepreneurs.
“We’re having a hard time staying ahead of the demand,” Shore said.
Others include Sorella Salon and Manchale Indian food restaurant.
“We're pleased with the leasing activity,” Shore said. “We're in a good position to finish leasing the retail and the quasi-retail.”
In March, the group purchased a 3.3-acre tract and plans to build its sixth building.
Shore also raved about Innovate Flower Mound, the town's first entrepreneur center, which opened last week in one of the buildings. Shore said that will also help spark activity at Parker Square.
“There's a lot of excitement in Parker Square,” Shore said. “The morale is high.”