In the heart of Dallas city limits and beyond to nearby towns, corporations are purchasing buildings for astronomical, record-setting amounts. Major 2016 transactions for some of the most visible skyline office high-rises include a German investment fund’s acquisition of the 21-story 2000 McKinney tower in Uptown Dallas, which sold for over $200 million—about $500 per square foot. In West Plano, twenty miles north, an unnamed foreign investor reportedly spent nearly $400 per square foot for the 13-story Legacy Tower, setting a new record price for the city. With construction costs and the increasing valuation of land, capital is flowing into the area from domestic and international sources willing to pay premium prices for office locations. Like corporations, buyers on the hunt for lower-priced homes are facing difficulty and many are opting to rent instead. Marcus Hiles’ Dallas based company has confirmed growing interest in their luxury rental offerings as conditions continue to limit the amount of entry-level houses below $250,000 for first-time homeowners.
Charitable actions along the line of Hiles’ have become increasingly crucial in recent years, as the city’s inner-city school districts have struggled to compensate for a 2011 decision by the state Legislature to cut $5.4 billion in education funding. Hit the hardest by the cuts were the schools in poorer, urban communities, where minimal property taxes were unable to overcome the budget loss. Since this controversial 2011 ruling, these districts have lost an average of 12 percent of their full-time teachers and been forced to leave students overcrowded and with less individual attention. As the New York Times reported, the state of Texas considers 66 percent of students in the Dallas district as at a high risk of dropping out, and Marcus Hiles believes the city’s youth need to be afforded better opportunities. “For these children hailing from lower income families, a quality education plays a pivotal role in improving social mobility,” Hiles pointed out. “Kindergarten through 6th grade is essential to the next generation’s success.”
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