Department store chain JCPenney signed DFW’s biggest office lease seen this year.
Dallas’ commercial real estate market had a banner year in 2022. It was recently named the top commercial real estate market in the nation, according to The Real Deal.
Playing a non-negligible part in this was JCPenney’s lease of a 318,000-square-foot office building at 6501 Legacy West in May.
The company has re-established its headquarters in Plano, which was previously housed on the same 86-acre campus from 1992 to 2020, as The Dallas Express previously reported.
During the pandemic, the 120-year-old company moved its employees out of its headquarters at the Legacy business park and allowed them to work from home or in one of its vacant stores. It was during this time that JCPenney was undergoing bankruptcy proceedings.
JCPenney was taken out of bankruptcy in December 2020 by the Simon Property Group and Brookfield Asset Management, who acquired the company’s retail and operating assets, eliminating much of the company’s debt. About one-third of JCPenney’s 667 stores are in Simon and Brookfield malls.
JCPenney hired former Levi Strauss & Co. Executive Vice President Marc Rosen as the new CEO. Rosen explained that he joined the struggling retailer because “it is an absolutely iconic American Brand.” Under his tenure, the company has experienced a shakeup at the management level.
“About half of the roles in the C-suite we had to fill. That made for an intensive 10 months. I’m really proud of the team we have assembled,” Rosen said.
The company is making some progress in its e-commerce business, a segment that is now responsible for a quarter of its revenue.
“That is significant, but also given the customer environment, given what’s happening overall with the growth of online, we believe we have significant room to grow the online business and in collaboration with that, grow our store business given where we are right now,” Rosen explained.
The new headquarters is the start of JCPenney’s bounce back, and the campus will undergo a $10 million renovation by Dallas-based firm Corgan before the company moves around 2,000 employees back to HQ. It is expected to be completed by next spring.
“We’re happy to share that JCPenney has signed a lease to move into a permanent home office: The Campus at Legacy West,” Rosen said.
“Our corporate headquarters must provide an environment where we can collaborate and create, accommodate diverse personal and professional needs, and experience the JCPenney brand,” he added.
“Legacy West meets these requirements and more.”
JCPenney’s long-term lease is expected to “trigger significant amenity activation in and around the project,” according to REJournals.