Ellison Street Project

The developments at 135 and 114 W Ellison Street were formed through a private-public partnership. Included below is information about the project and some frequently asked questions. If you have any additional questions please email Alex Philips, economic development director.

What is the Ellison Street Project?135 W Ellison Street rendering

The development at 135 W Ellison Street will consist of seven buildings and will include 29,755 square feet of retail space and 22,050 square feet of office space. There will also be a new parking lot constructed at 140 W. Bufford in conjunction with the development. 

The development at 114 W Ellison Street will consist of 5,500 square feet of retail space and 5,500 square feet of office space. 

Is this project going to cause my property taxes to increase? 

This development will not directly impact residential property taxes in the city. 

Why is the city participating in this project?

For the past 20 years, the city has been focusing on placemaking in Old Town. In January 2000, the Comprehensive Land Use Plan including a portion on encouraging public and private economic incentives for the re-development of Old Town. One element of the Imagine Burleson document that was adopted in April 2010 called for the city to promote an environment that incorporates unique identification elements that create a cohesive identity throughout the city.

The city has been focusing on specific areas of Old Town, which include:

  • Bringing development complementary to Mayor Vera Calvin Plaza
  • Bringing users to Old Town at a variety of times: day, night and weekends
  • Improving customer experience at city facilities
  • Providing additional parking
  • Increasing walkability
  • Providing better connectivity and lighting 

The proposed Ellison Street project addresses each of the focus areas. 

Who will be tenants of the buildings?

In three out of the seven buildings that will be located on 135 W Ellison Street the City of Burleson will own and occupy 12,000 square feet. The city will use the space to office the development services team, along with other key city staff. The other 8,000 square feet will be retained by the developer and will be marketed as retail for a period of 12 months. If the space is not leased after that time, the city will allow for office users to lease it.

One building will be owned by Heim BBQ and the building next to Heim BBQ will be a restaurant and office user that is to be determined. 

Who will the developer of the project be?

BTX Old Town, LLC on 135 W. Ellison; Matt Aiken and Aaron Wimberley on 114 W. Ellison.

How was the developer selected? 

A Request for Proposals (RFP) Issued for 135 W. Ellison St. (former Wood Shopping Center) & 114 W. Ellison St. (West Building) on August 9, 2019. For the property at 135 W. Ellison the city received two proposals. One from BTX Old Town, LLC and one from David Shipman & Tim Windmiller. For the property at 114 W. Ellison the city received one proposal from Matt Aiken & Aaron Wimberley.

Who was part of the process that selected the developer? 

The staff panel included Drew Pennywell, EDC Project Manager, Alex Philips, EDC Director, Mandy Clark, Director of Development Services and Aaron Russell, Public Works Director. The committee reviewed and scored the proposals and made a recommendation to City Council.

What are the deal points of the partnership between the city and the developer?

  • Property will be deeded to the developer.
  • Developer is responsible for development of the site.
  • City to own and construct the approximately
     10,000 square feet on the second floor and an additional 2,000 square feet on the first floor for city offices.
  • Developer will serve as the general contractor
     for the city.
  • Developer will be responsible for leasing the other 8,000 SF in buildings 3,4, and 5 at their own risk.
  • 5,500 SF will be leased to Heim BBQ in building 6.  Developer will lease an additional 4,600 SF in building 7 at their own risk.
  • Developer will demo the building at 114 W. Ellison.

Why is the city deeding the property to the developer? 

By deeding the property to the developer it allows the city to maintain a specific vision for the property. The property is a part of the incentive package, as it is difficult for developers to receive financing to build on land that they do not own. It is also important to note that when property is owned by the city, there are no taxes paid on the property. By deeding the property to the developer, the developer will begin paying taxes on the property and the improvements. Which gives the city additional revenue. The city will see a return of 298% over a 15 years with the incentive package approved by City Council.

What are the financial incentives the city is providing to the developer?

  • No property tax incentives are proposed.

  • Performance based sales tax incentives are recommended
    1. Attracts users consistent with Council goals (e.g. restaurant and retail).
    2. If sales do not materialize, the size of the incentive is reduced.
    3. Incentive limited to first 10 years of lease.  
  • Term for Downtown TIF will need to be extended until 2041 to match term of the bond issue.
    1. Currently, TIF is scheduled to expire in 2037.

      Developer Incentives

      Land 135 & 114 W Ellison Street
      (City purchased property in 2012 for $1.2M)
      Burying Oncor electric lines$300,000Reimbursed to the developer
      Make ready utility work for the site$100,000Reimbursed to the developer
      Building fees$100,000Reimbursed to the developer
      Phase 1 Environmental$20,000
      Demolition of 114 W Ellison Street Building$100,000Reimbursed to the developer

What is the city's return on investment on the development?

  • 131 new parking spaces
  • 12,000 square feet of city facilities
  • $746,880 in new property tax collected
  • $4,680,000 in new sales tax collected
  • Resulting in a net return on investment of 298% over 15 years

What is the city's cost for their portion of the building that will house city facilities?

City Cost Elements (Estimated) 

Construct 12,000 square feet of office space$3,000,000Estimated at $250 per square foot
Furniture, Fixtures & Equipment$300,000Estimated at $25 per square foot
Build public walkway from Bufford Street to Mayor Vera Calvin Plaza$60,000
Platting, surveying, building fees and owners representative$225,000Design/construction services
Demolition of city-owned building at 225 W Renfro & construction of new public parking lot$1,342,500Includes asbestos removal
Renovation of city hall, including production studio$170,000
Sidewalk and lighting improvements$350,000 Up to $350,000
Contingency 20%$1,089,500

How is the city going to fund their portion of the facilities?

Preliminary City Financing Components 

Funding SourceContributionComments
4A Economic Development Corporation*$2,045,760Based on 32% of square feet; reimbursement for infrastructure
Downtown TIF Fund**$3,196,500Based on 50% of square feet; parking lot costs
Water/Sewer Fund*$1,150,740Based on 18% of square feet
PEG Fund*$144,000Cost to create production studio


* Cash contribution
** Bonds are proposed to be sold for the downtown TIF

What is the timeline for the project?

  • A design contract is proposed to be jointly awarded in February 2021.
  • September 2021  - design will be presented to city council for approval.
  • Construction to begin in early 2022 and first phase completed by 2023; Future phases will be completed based on market demand.
  • Once construction of new buildings is complete, City offices will be relocated and the construction of new parking lot and City Hall renovations will begin.

What about parking in Old Town? 

  • A parking study by Walker Consultants identified a shortfall of 56 spaces.
  • City has property at 225 W Renfro Street that can be redeveloped to add additional parking.
  • Currently there are 68 parking spaces available. New layout would allow for an additional 63 new parking spaces for a total of 131 parking spaces.
  • Lighting and landscaping to match Ellison Street upgrades would be added to provide better connectivity and make the area safer.

parking for ellison street project

connectivity plan ellison street project

Will the construction close roads or Mayor Vera Calvin Plaza?

There may be temporary closures during construction or detours but not for any extended amount of time.

Ellison Project History

  • City acquired property at 135 and 114 West Ellison Street in January 2013.
    1. Intent of acquisitions was to incentivize development and achieve desired vision for property.
  • City issued prior RFP in 2016 to select development partner.
    1. Selected Realty Capital as a partner for negotiations.       
    2. Unable to successfully negotiate development.
  • Additional parking lots constructed on Bufford and Main Streets to increase access to businesses in the area (120 new parking spots).
  • Contract to construct Plaza awarded in 2019, construction completed in 2020.
    1. Former Woods Shopping Center demolished as part of the project.
  • To complement development in the area, the City released a new RFP in late 2019 to select a development partner.