NewsTalk Texas

Midland

Midland Samís Club $5.7M renovation completed 

(10/10/2014)

MIDLAND - The Sam’s Club store, located at 1500 Tradewinds Blvd., has reopened after a six-month, $5.7 million renovation.

Renovations include:

•  a new $1.2 million gasoline island,
•  a new pharmacy,
•  an expanded optical center,
•  a new hearing aid center; and
•  remodeled and expanded restrooms.

Midland’s Sam’s Club opened in 1986 and was one of the first to open in Texas, just three years after Walmart founder Sam Walton opened the first Sam’s Club location.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland median income up by 14.8 percent 

(10/6/2014)

MIDLAND - Midland’s median household income rose to more than $71,000 in 2013, a 14.8 percent increase year-over-year from 2012, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Midland’s median household income has increased by 27 percent since 2011, rising $15,000 between 2011 and 2013. The Midland metropolitan area now ranks ninth in the U.S. for median home income.

Median income in Midland is almost $20,000 higher than the median household income in Texas and $19,000 higher than the U.S. median household income.

Midland’s previous peak, $62,272, was in 2008 before the recession, and then dipped until 2012, when it started growing again.

The Odessa metropolitan area ranks 74th in median household income behind Atlanta, and its income from 2012 to 2013 increased by 5.7 percent. Between 2011 and 2013, Odessa saw a 7.6 percent increase in income with a gain of almost $4,000.

More than $42 billion in oil revenue has been the catalyst for Midland and Odessa income growth. The oil industry has created thousands of jobs and has pushed Midland’s population above 120,000 this year.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Fifty-four months of Midland-Odessa economic expansion 

(10/3/2014 6:05:00 AM)

MIDLAND, ODESSA - The Midland-Odessa Regional Economic Index was 6.8 percent higher in August 2014 than in August 2013, and has recorded 54 straight months of economic expansion, according to economist Karr Ingham.

Midland and Odessa issued 107 permits in August 2014, up from 105 in August 2013. The two cities have issued 913 permits so far this year, up 2.4 percent from 892 last year, a total Ingham reports is higher than all annual totals other than 2012 and 2013.

Realtors sold 294 homes in August 2014, up 3.9 percent from 283 in August 2013. So far in 2014, 2,209 home have been sold, up 4.7 percent from 2,109 in August 2013.

The average home sales price was $254,327 in August 2014, up 0.3 percent from $253,496 in August 2013. The average price so far in 2014 is $247,467, up 10.9 percent from $223,061 to-date in 2013, which was 17 percent higher than the to-date 2012 average.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Shipping out: Midland exports up 57 percent in 2013 

(9/24/2014 6:43:00 AM)

MIDLAND - The Midland MSA had merchandise exports totaling a record $164 million in 2013, up $60 million or 57 percent from 2012, according to the International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Key merchandise export categories for Midland in 2013 included:

  • machinery;
  • computer and electronic products;
  • primary metal manufactures;
  • fabricated metal products; and
  • oil and gas.

“I believe it’s so imperative for Permian Basin manufacturers to keep a significant portion of their revenues focused on exports. It’s just good business — lending diversification to your business and a nice insurance policy for swings in the domestic market,” said Larry Richards, president and CEO of Hy-Bon Engineering.

Overall, Texas exported $60 billion in petroleum-related merchandise, followed by computers and other electronics, and then chemicals, said Dan Swart, director of the U.S. Commercial Service in North Texas.

The state’s top trading partner was Mexico, followed by Canada and then Brazil. China fell to fourth place.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland Wall Street Lofts ring opening bell in Nov. 

(9/23/2014)

MIDLAND - The $17.4 million, 108-unit Wall Street Lofts in downtown are nearing completion, and will be ready for tenants by November 2014, according to developer Roger Gault.

The Lofts will include one- and two-bedroom apartments ranging from 605 sf to 1,136 sf. A top-floor clubhouse with flat screen televisions and a kitchen will complement the Lofts’ pool and fitness center.

The 5,000 sf of retail space in the bottom of the building has not yet been leased.

The four-story lofts will be released floor-by-floor, with the top floor, leasing office and club room coming online first. The parking garage should also be completed in mid-November.

Private funds provided $12 million of the construction costs, and the City of Midland, in conjunction with the Midland Development Corp. (MDC), provided $5 million for construction of the parking garage.

The land that the Lofts sits on, which was valued at $350,000, was provided for the project at no charge through the city’s Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone Board.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

One giant leap for Midland International Air & Space Port 

(9/18/2014 6:30:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Midland International Airport is now Midland International Air & Space Port, as the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has approved a commercial space launch site license for the airport.

Though there are eight other commercial spaceports with FAA licensing, Midland International Air & Space Port is the first primary commercial service airport certified by the FAA as a spaceport.

“The proximity of the airport to the spaceport allows us to take advantage of existing infrastructure, which in turn lowers cost to the operators and offers us a competitive advantage over operations at remote locations,” said Marv Esterly, the City of Midland’s Director of Airports.

XCOR Aerospace plans to launch suborbital flights from the spaceport by 2015, and Orbital Outfitters plans to build spacesuits for XCOR’s vehicles and operate a multi-use altitude chamber complex from the spaceport. Both companies will relocate from California.

The spaceport’s anchor tenant, XCOR, broke ground on its facility in August 2014, and Orbital Outfitters is preparing to break ground within the next two months.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Over 250 homes in store for west, north Midland 

(9/16/2014)

MIDLAND - Three new phases of residential projects will add more than 250 new homes to Midland’s burgeoning housing market within the next year after Midland’s Planning and Zoning Commission granted its approval.

D.R. Horton gained both approval for a final plat of its Adobe Meadows Addition in north Midland and a zone change for their Legacy Addition development in west Midland. Additionally, a zone change of a 24-acre plot to the east of phase one of Daybreak Estates will make way for a second phase of 60 to 70 homes.

The Adobe Addition is moving into the second stage of building, while the Legacy Addition broke ground on its infrastructure in spring 2014. Home construction will begin within the next few months, and Legacy should be completed sometime in the next two years, said Eric West, a civil engineer for Parkhill, Smith & Cooper.

Phase one of Daybreak Estates laid out 167 lots, four of which have been built and more than 40 have been sold, according to Andrew Mellen of Midland’s Maverick Engineering. The project has four stages and will eventually have over 500 homes. The first phase broke ground in summer 2013 and phase two will begin in December 2014 or January 2015.

The median home price in Midland for July 2014 was $247,900, a 7.1 percent increase year-over-year from July 2013. Since July 2009, when home prices slumped due to the Great Recession, home prices for the month of July have increased by 48.2 percent.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Holiday Inn Express with 90 rooms to Midland market 

(9/16/2014)

MIDLAND - The 90-room, 55,200-sf Holiday Inn Express has opened on Crump St. near I-20 and Rankin Hwy.

The estimated cost of construction was $5 million, according to state filings.

Insignia Hospitality Group owns and manages the hotel.

Read more at Texas Real Estate Business.

Midland hotels continue record gains in 2Q 

(9/10/2014)

MIDLAND - Midland was ranked first in Texas for both hotel revenue and occupancy in second quarter 2014.

Hotel revenues in 2Q 2014 increased by 31.4 percent over 2Q 2013, growing from $25 million to $33 million, according to Source Strategies.

Midland’s hotel revenue growth was over 20 percent better than average revenue growth statewide, and taxable receipts were up from $21 million in 2013 to $28 million in 2014, an increase of 28.5 percent.

Both Midland and Odessa ranked in the top two for hotel performance with an 84.7 percent and 79.6 percent hotel occupancy, respectively.

Year-over-year, Midland’s occupancy rate grew by 0.9 percent from 83.9 percent to 84.7 percent. Both cities were far above the statewide occupancy average, which sat at 67.8 percent.

Room rates have continued to remain high, with the estimated average at $108 per night. Odessa has a $119-per-night average rate, while Austin took the top slot with a $126-per-night average rate.

Midland posted a $13.26 gain in its revenue per available room over 2Q 2013 numbers, compared to the statewide average increase of $4.58 year-over-year.

Revenues have increased from $36 million in 2009 to more than $101 million in 2013. Hotel revenue for 2014 is already more than $60 million, putting 2014 on track for another record year.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland McDonaldís, Walmart wager on students 

(9/8/2014)

MIDLAND - An incentive program used by a local McDonald’s franchise owned and operated by Jesse Carillo, has begun its third year paying incentives to its high school-aged employees for good grades in school.

Eligible employees working a minimum of 20 hours a week will receive $40 for every A grade, $25 for every B and $10 for every C. Additionally, as recently as three years ago, the local McDonald’s offered $1,000 signing bonuses for new employees.

The incentives at McDonald’s will affect at least 250 employees, and more than $48,000 was given out in 2013 for the program. Because the money comes from Carillo, the payments do not affect the franchise’s finances.

“This is a program that we look to keep indefinitely,” said franchise CEO Richard Rodriguez. “This is what we’re giving back to the community.”

In addition to the McDonald’s incentives, a Midland Walmart is currently advertising a starting pay of $14 an hour for new hires.

Midland reported a 2.9 percent unemployment rate in July 2014, the fourth lowest in the nation. And since November 2013, the rate has been 3 percent or lower.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland's 212,000-SF Occidental Petroleum 'in the pipeline' 

(8/28/2014 7:00:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Occidental Petroleum officials and employees have broken ground for the company’s Midland office. The 212,000-sf complex is planned for 6001 Deauville Blvd., just west of the Scharbauer Sports Complex.

The four-story building will house 600 employees and will feature state-of-the-art technology, tools and automated systems.

A control room will allow Occidental’s Permian Basin assets to be monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week. A conference center will provide room for town hall and other large-scale meetings with seating for more than 250 and ten work-top tables.

The complex, which allows for opportunities to expand, will incorporate the company’s three main work groups which include the Enhanced Oil Recovery team, the Permian Resources group and the Midstream group.

In 2015, the company will break ground on a 20,000-sf Permian training center in north Midland on the company’s South Curtis Ranch holdings.

Occidental’s new complex is the first in the company’s planned Energy Plaza at Westridge Park, which will feature up to five four-story 100,000-sf office buildings.

Westridge Park is a master-planned development on more than 100 acres located just east of Chevron’s new campus.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland posts second-lowest jobless rate in the nation 

(8/6/2014)

MIDLAND - Midland posted the second-lowest unemployment rate in the nation during the month of June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Midland’s unemployment rate of 2.9 percent trailed only Bismarck, North Dakota, which led the nation with a rate of 2.6 percent. Midland’s unemployment rate in May was the fourth lowest. From December to April, Midland posted the lowest unemployment rate or tied for the lowest four times.

The BLS report also showed Midland’s civilian workforce in June was 98,200 — an increase of 1,200 from May and an increase of 3,200 from June 2013.

Odessa’s 3.6 percent rate in June 2014 was the ninth lowest in the nation.

Read more at the Midland Reporter Telegram.

Nothing average in Midland: home values rank first in Texas 

(7/24/2014 8:14:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Home values grew by more than 23 percent year-over-year in June, pushing the Tall City’s median price back to the number one slot statewide for the second time this year.

The median home price in June was $283,100, as 208 single-family homes, townhouses and condominiums were sold. The sales volume grew about 14.3 percent year over year, up from 182 transactions in June 2013.

The volume of homes sold is traditionally strongest during summer months, but the number of transactions in June surged beyond the average and to the highest level in Midland’s documented history.

No other Texas city recorded a higher June median home price than Midland, which has not happened since January. The Tall City also broke its own record for highest median home price by almost $32,000.

Last month, the median value of an Odessa home was $176,500.

Highest June Home Values Statewide
Midland $283,100
Fort Bend County $280,800
Collin County $272,700
Montgomery County $251,400
Austin $249,800


Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

It's elementary, Midland: three 93,000-SF schools coming 

(7/24/2014)

MIDLAND - A $163 million bond passed in 2012 is funding the construction of three new elementary schools. Trustees approved design development plans for each of the three new 800-student, 93,000-sf campuses last November.

Bunche Elementary School, located at 702 S. Jackson St., broke ground on May 15. It was the first groundbreaking on a new Midland ISD campus in 22 years.

The Barbara Fasken Elementary School located at 5806 Val Verde is set to break ground July 29.

The ceremony for the new school at 6000 Riverfront Dr. in the Legends Park neighborhood is set for July 30.

Each school is expected to cost $18 million to construct according to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

The Clusters apartments in Midland sold to Chicago firm 

(7/8/2014 6:45:00 AM)

MIDLAND - The 352-unit Clusters apartment complex, located at 4415 Northcrest Dr., has been sold to Chicago-based TVO Groupe.

TVO Groupe plans to invest more than $1.4 million into the property in the next several years. That figure translates to about $4,000 per unit.

Midland Central Appraisal District values the property at nearly $21.8 million, according to preliminary assessments for 2014.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland apartment supply growing 

(6/26/2014 6:59:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Earlier this month, 26 more units came on the market as Westwood Villas, at 4100 W. Illinois Ave., opened its first apartment building. A second building is expected to open July 1, adding another 26 one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments.

In addition to Westwood Villas, four other apartment complexes have opened since the end of 2013, according to information compiled by Michelle Martinez, a local Apartment Finder publisher.

On the other hand, demand for housing has yet to taper off in Midland. Sunrise at Fairgrounds, a 54-unit complex at 1401 N. Fairgrounds Rd., opened in January and already is full, said April Feuge, the property manager. Another 54 units should open around November, as construction crews are now expanding the complex.

A total of 613 units have entered the market in 2014. The average price per month is $1,150 for a one-bedroom, $1,500 for a two-bedroom and $1,750 for a three-bedroom.

New Midland Apartments in the Market in 2014
Complex Address
Westwood Villas 4100 W. Illinois Ave.
Mesquite Terrace Apartments 501 S. Loop 250 W.
Sunrise at Fairgrounds 1401 N. Fairgrounds Rd.
Playa Del Puebo Apartment Homes 611 E. I-20
Midway Station 3700 N. A St.


Including the second phase of Westwood Villas, more than 870 additional units are slated for completion before the end of this year.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram. Listen to Podcast 220 for more Small Towns, Big Deals.

Hotels in Midland set revenue records in 1Q 2014 

(6/9/2014)

MIDLAND - Following a record-breaking year, Midland’s hotel industry shows no signs of slowing down in 2014 as revenue grew 13 percent year-over-year in first quarter.

The Tall City’s 39 hotels generated more than $27.6 million in 1Q 2014, the highest amount from any quarter in history, according to the most recent report from the Office of the Governor, Economic Development and Tourism.

Five more hotels opened in Midland since 1Q 2013, adding about 400 rooms, which uses data compiled by San Antonio-based Source Strategies Inc.

The demand — or number of nights sold — grew by 9.4 percent year-over-year in the first quarter.

Consequently, the average rate for a room increased by about 3.2 percent year-over-year. Midland’s national hotel chains charged an average of $125.44 in the first quarter, while independently owned businesses averaged $67.54.

The average price per night — including every Midland hotel — was $108.42, the third highest in the state.

Austin and Odessa are the only other cities in Texas with a higher average rate than Midland’s hotels. In Austin, the average was $126.75 per night and $119.38 in Odessa, according to the report.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram. For the full report, see Source Strategies Inc.

Midland home sales April 2014 

(6/5/2014 6:30:00 AM)

MIDLAND - The Texas Association of Realtors has released home sales information for April 2014.

Midland Home Sales April 2014
Category April 2013 April 2014 Change
Median Home Sales $205,000 $230,500 12.4%
New Listings 214 251 17.3%
Average DOM 42 44 4.8%
Months Supply of Inventory 2.2 2.4 9.1%


Source: Texas Association of Realtors

Read more at the Texas Association of Realtors. For more information see Housing under Midland Market Data Sources.

Midland highlights Texas' low unemployment rate 

(5/30/2014)

MIDLAND - The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that Midland’s 2.3 percent unemployment rate in April was the lowest of all Metropolitan Statistical Areas in the country.

It was the fourth time in the last five months that Midland has posted the lowest or tied for the lowest unemployment rate in the nation.

The BLS report also showed Midland’s civilian workforce in April was 97,200 — an increase of 700 from March and an increase of 2,900 from April 2013.

The BLS rankings in April also showed the strength of the Texas economy. Of the MSA's with the lowest 20 unemployment rates (3.5 or lower), five were from Texas. Another four Texas MSA's posted unemployment rates below 4 percent.

Texas MSA's with Unemployment Rates Below 4%
Midland 2.3%
Odessa 2.9%
Amarillo 3.3%
Lubbock 3.5%
College Station-
Bryan
3.5%
San Angelo 3.6%
Abilene 3.7%
Austin-Round Rock-
San Marcos
3.8%
Victoria 3.8%


Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Home values and supply on the up and up in Midland 

(5/29/2014 6:15:00 AM)

MIDLAND - April home values were up by 4.7 percent year-over-year in Midland, marking the 11th consecutive month of growth.

The median price of homes sold last month was $227,000, according to data published by the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

Home values have not dropped year-over-year in Midland since May 2013, when the median price dipped $1,000 from May 2012, a decrease of less than 1 percent. The center’s data include single-family homes, townhouses and condominiums.

Midland now boasts the fifth highest home value across the Lone Star State, falling one spot from March. Fort Bend County, near Houston, had the highest April median price, at $258,400, the Real Estate Center’s data show.

Additionally, the supply of Midland homes on the market in April 2014 grew by nearly 57 percent year-over-year. The center reported 546 listings, the most since September 2012, when 551 homes were on the market.

Five Highest April Median Home Values in Texas
Fort Bend County $258,400
Collin County $257,100
Montgomery County $231,200
Austin $237,600
Midland $227,000


Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland teachers get a $6M 'thank you' 

(5/22/2014)

MIDLAND - The Midland ISD Education Foundation has received $6.25 million in donations for teacher signing and re-signing bonuses from eight area companies and foundations.

Entities providing donations include Concho Resources, Pioneer Natural Resources, Apache Corp., Warren Equipment Co., Chevron, the Abell-Hanger foundation, the Henry foundation and the Scharbauer foundation.

The donations will allow Midland ISD to offer 325 signing bonuses worth $10,000 each to any new, qualified teacher who commits to working in the district for at least three years, and 1,200 re-signing bonuses worth $2,500 for all current qualified teachers who sign on for the 2014–15 school year.

The specifics on the agreement for the signing bonus have not yet been finalized, but the $10,000 sum will be paid out over three years, according to Superintendent Ryder Warren.

Normal attrition across the state is about 10 to 15 percent, whereas Midland ISD’s rate is closer to 18 to 20 percent.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Listen to Podcast 216 for this story and more.

Chaney Ranch in Greenwood; new star in Midland County 

(5/13/2014)

GREENWOOD, MIDLAND COUNTY - Site work on Chaney Ranch is set to start sometime in May. The development will consist of 107 executive one- and two-acre lots in the Greenwood School District of Midland County.

Phase 1 has 15 two-acre lots and 32 one-acre lots.

Developer Permian Basin Group will plant more than 300 trees in Phase 1. There will be a 2.5-mile bridle trail around the entire property.

One of the key features of Chaney Ranch is its abundance of water. There is sufficient water to support lush landscaping or full grass paddocks for horses.

Source: Permian Basin Group

Midland sports complex stirs multifamily, hotel development 

(5/12/2014)

MIDLAND - New apartments and hotels around the Scharbauer Sports Complex in west Midland have been approved by the Planning and Zoning Commission.

Hillstone on Deauville, a 188-unit apartment complex situated on 11.74 acres, will be located on SH 191. It will be the first apartment complex in an area covered with subdivisions and hotels.

All of the tenant buildings will be three stories, two of which will be entirely units and the remaining eight will be two stories for units and one story for parking.

West of Hillstone on Deauville will be an Embassy Suites hotel. The zoning for the hotel was approved as a 3.3-acre tract, which allows for buildings at a maximum height of seven stories, or 80 feet.

At least 11 hotels are built or are being built around the sports complex area. Despite the number of hotel rooms, rates continue to be high and vacancies are still rare. Midland has the second highest occupancy rate and the third most expensive rates in Texas, as previously reported.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland Homewood Suites opens 118-suite hotel 

(5/11/2014)

MIDLAND - The 118-suite Homewood Suites by Hilton has opened at 1401 Tradewinds Blvd. The four-story, extended-stay property is the first Homewood suites in the Midland/Odessa area, and is near Midland International Airport and several major oil and gas company facilities.

NewcrestImage LLC owns and manages the hotel.

Read more at Texas Real Estate Business.

Midland housing newsflash: median price jumps, supply up 

(5/6/2014)

MIDLAND - The median home price jumped about 19.5 percent during first quarter 2014 compared to 1Q 2013, according to the Quarterly Housing Report published by the Texas Association of Realtors.

Midland’s median home value was $237,300 in 1Q 2014, compared to the statewide median value of $172,900.

The supply of homes in Midland increased to a 2.8-month supply — up from a 2.3-month supply in 1Q 2013. The inventory throughout Texas, however, plummeted in 1Q 2014, dropping to its lowest level in state history — at a 3.4-month supply.

“While housing demand shows no signs of declining, Texas will likely continue to see constrained home sales growth throughout the rest of the year, while home prices will continue to expand at double-digit rates,” said Jim Gaines, an economist with The Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University

Summer 2014 will likely bring one of the most competitive housing markets in state history, according to Dan Hatfield, Texas Association of Realtors chairman.

1Q 2014 Midland Housing Statistics
  1Q
2014
1Q
2013
Y-O-Y
Change
Units sold 417 431 -3.24%
Median price $237,300 $198,600 19.48%
Average price $272,346 $231,959 17.41%
Months of inventory 2.80 2.30  21.73%


Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

See the full 1Q 2014 report at the Texas Association of Realtors.

Midlandersí wages rank first in West Texas, second statewide 

(4/24/2014)

MIDLAND - Average annual wages top the entire West Texas region and fall short only to those in the Houston MSA. Midlanders boast an average annual income of $49,040 — only about $800 lower than the Houston average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Between 15 percent and 20 percent of Midland workers are employed within the oil and gas industry — likely the highest concentration of any U.S. metro area population tied to one single industry, according to economist Karr Ingham.

Midlanders who make the most money, on average, do not work within the oil and gas industry. Instead, it local physicians, including surgeons, who bring home the most money each year.

Surgeons and physicians are paid an average of $230,040 each year in Midland — nearly 24 percent more than those in Houston. There are 150 physicians employed in Midland, while there are more than 4,800 in the Houston metropolitan area.

In both metropolitan areas, however, chief executives make the second highest salary, on average. In Midland, CEOs collect an average of $195,820 a year, while they make an average of $226,290 in Houston.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland-Odessa construction sector on fire  

(4/7/2014)

MIDLAND, ODESSA - The Midland-Odessa Regional Economic Index posted its 48th consecutive month of increase in February 2014, and was 5.5 percent above February 2013 levels, according to economist Karr Ingham.

Midland-Odessa’s construction sector saw a February 2014 total permit valuation of just more than $63 million, up 46.7 percent from February 2013. During the first two months of 2014, the combined permit valuations totaled $140.4 million, up 36.6 percent from the $107.8 million issued during the first two months 2013.

Existing home sales were slightly higher in February 2014, with the 202 closed home sales up 2.5 percent from 197 in February 2013. There have been 403 closed sales so far in 2014, up 10.7 percent from 364 during the same time in 2013.

In February 2014, the average home sales price was $225,403, up 3.6 percent from $217,519 in February 2014. During the first two months of 2014, the average sales price has been $227,323, up 4.5 percent from $217,605 averaged in the first two months of 2013.

Payroll employment — the number of jobs estimated to exist in the Midland-Odessa combined metro area — was up by 3.2 percent in February 2014 compared to February 2013, reflecting the addition of 5,000 jobs to the economy over the last 12 months.

The unemployment rate remains the lowest in the state, averaging 3.3 percent in February 2014, down from 3.7 percent in February 2013.

Consumer spending — inflation adjusted — was up 7 percent over February 2013, which was more than 10 percent higher than February 2012. Automotive spending remains on the rise, with February 2014 figures up 8 percent compared to February 2013.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

What's normal? Over 400,000 at Midland International Airport 

(4/4/2014)

MIDLAND - Midland International has accommodated more than 450,000 passengers every fiscal year since 2007, other than in fiscal years 2009 and 2010 due to the national recession.

Midland had 165,028 enplanements thus far in fiscal year 2014 (between October 2013 and January 2014). This figure is already above the seven-year average, prompting predictions that the airport may surpass 500,000 passengers by the end of the fiscal year.

From fiscal year 2010 to January 2014, the number of passengers at Midland International increased by 17 percent.

Midland International’s soaring enplanements are an echo effect of the oil boom that continues to bring more job seekers from across the country, with business travelers outnumbering leisure passengers, according to Marv Esterly, director of airports.

Of all the airport passengers, 40 percent come from Midland, 40 percent come from Odessa and the remaining 20 percent come from the surrounding area, said Esterly.

With the robust economy, the airport is adding corporate hangars, renovating its food court and lounge area and making other improvements.

The Wright Amendment appeal will open the door for Southwest Airlines to offer additional nonstop flights out of Love Field starting in October 2014. Dallas Love is the top destination for Midland International passengers, according to the Research and Innovative Technology Administration.

As of January 2014, the airport has about $6.7 million in the bank, $1.9 million of which is in its operating fund. Taking advantage of the land, the airport recently opened a new revenue stream by leasing mineral rights to oil companies.

One recent project that also has long-term ramifications is the construction of a spaceport at Midland International. The spaceport would be the first in the country that would be built at a commercial airport rather than in a private field or one specifically meant for aerospace use.

Midland International Airport Boardings
Year # of
Boardings
FY 2007 488,792
FY 2008 496,841
FY 2009 433,032
FY 2010 426,648
FY 2011 463,874
FY 2012 488,138
FY 2013 499,169

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland hotel industry strongest revenue in history 

(3/30/2014)

MIDLAND - In 2013, hotels brought in more cash than any other year in history, with revenues totaling $101,001,406, up about 1.7 percent from 2012, according to the Office of the Governor, Economic Development and Tourism.

The average daily rate in 2013 was $107.74, the third highest in all of Texas. Only in Austin, $116.70 per night, and Odessa, $115.34 per night, were the average rates higher, according to Source Strategies Inc. The average price throughout Texas was $94.44 per night.

Each individual hotel in Midland booked an average of 81.9 percent of its available rooms in 2013, the second highest occupancy rate in Texas, but down from 91.5 percent in 2012. San Angelo maintained the highest occupancy rate in 2013 at 82.9 percent.

The occupancy rate went down in 2013 because the overall hotel supply increased significantly while the number of people staying in hotels stayed virtually consistent, according to Keith Dial, Permian Basin Hotel Lodging Association president, said

More than 1,600 additional rooms were available between new hotels built in 2013, bringing the total up to 4,776 rooms at the end of 2013, according to the Midland Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The demand for hotels is not anticipated to go up too much in 2014, so the increased supply will likely continue to drive the average price of a room down, according to Dial.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

See previous story Texas hotel occupancy 2013; 11 metros beat state average.

Midland energy leaders expand campuses 

(3/26/2014)

MIDLAND - Oil companies are investing millions to build modern campus-like office space with many amenities. While many companies have moved north where more property is available, there still is significant interest in downtown.

Downtown Midland office buildings have typically been set up for multiple tenants, whereas large companies prefer their own buildings in campus-like settings, said former Midland mayor Wes Perry.

With all of downtown’s Class A office space full and “even the ‘C’ space is going up, price-wise, the market is very healthy and creates opportunities for us all,” said Perry.

Concho Resources acquired the ten-story Hightower Building and a nearby six-story building from Basic Energy Services in 2011 and spent about 18 months renovating the 180,000 sf of space into One Concho Center.

Pioneer Natural Resources, currently located downtown in the Bank of America Building, is constructing a $50 million six-story office building — complete with day care and cafeteria — north of ClayDesta Center on north Big Spring St. The project includes a three-story parking garage adjacent to the office building.

Fasken Oil & Ranch built a 60,000-sf two-story office building to accommodate its 150-plus employees in the southeastern-most section of the C Ranch. The office building was the first step in The Vineyards development, which will include The Office Park at The Vineyards, where two office buildings are under construction.

Chevron, located in ClayDesta Plaza at 15 Smith Rd., will head west in 2015 after the completion of its new $100 million campus near the Scharbauer Sports Complex. The new campus will have two four-story buildings totaling 330,000 sf with the capacity to accommodate 800 employees.

Establishing a vital downtown is a challenge every city faces, said Perry, and Midland is hampered by a shortage of ancillary attractions like retail and grocery stores and residences. That is why construction of Wall St. Lofts is so important: It will help provide that 24-hour component, said Perry.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland, Odessa: 2,976 units part of $300M deal 

(3/25/2014)

MIDLAND, ODESSA - The Related Real Estate Recovery Fund has acquired 21 Class B multifamily properties, comprised of 3,128 units, for about $300 million. Fourteen of the assets with 1,751 units are in Midland; six assets of 1,225 units are in Odessa. The remaining 152 units are in Longview.

The properties were completed between 1974 and 1983, but have been extensively renovated after being acquired by Pivotal Group in 2012 for about $13 million.

The Midland-Odessa area has 3.2 percent unemployment, an average household income of $157,000, 97 percent occupancy of multifamily housing, and the potential to substantially raise rents, according to CBRE.

The Related Cos. expects to improve the portfolio by implementing institutional-quality management practices and investing significant capital to upgrade the properties.

“With the exception of the past five years, the Midland-Odessa region experienced an extremely limited amount of new construction and capital upgrade investment since mid-1980s, creating a gap in the marketplace,” said Justin Metz, managing principal of Related Fund Management.

Read more at Globe St. and Realtynewsreport.

Midland No. 1 MSA in U.S. under 3 percent jobless rate 

(3/24/2014)

MIDLAND - Midland’s 2.9 percent jobless rate made it the only MSA in the nation to post a jobless rate less than 3 percent in January 2014, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Midland’s civilian labor force grew by 2,500 people from January 2013 to January 2014. Of the 95,600 people in the labor force, 2,800 were unemployed.

During a five-month stretch from December 2012 through April 2013, no community in America posted a lower jobless rate than Midland.

Odessa’s 3.6 percent unemployment rate during January 2013 put the area in a three-way tie with Iowa City, Iowa, and Fargo, North Dakota for fifth best in the nation.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland Fasken Oil adding 39 units to The Vineyard 

(3/21/2014)

MIDLAND - The 39-unit second phase of The Vineyard development will be located on 7.212 acres west of the Holiday Hill Rd. and Green Tree Blvd. intersection. Construction starts during summer 2014 and finish in 2015.

Fasken Oil and Ranch Ltd. will develop the luxury complex, which will be comprised of nine two-story buildings only holding at most six units, and an ample 128-space parking lot

The Vineyard is a master-planned, mixed-use development by Fasken that includes space for single-family homes, apartments, office space, parks, retail and an elementary school.

Fasken previously developed The Vineyard’s 176-unit Sandstone Ridge complex, and both complexes will be for rent to the public, not just exclusively for Fasken employees.

Construction of The Vineyard began in 2010 with the development of Fasken’s corporate headquarters. Construction is already underway for two office buildings, one of which will be occupied by SM Energy Co.

Barbara Fasken Elementary, a 92,000-sf campus that will accommodate 800 students, will be in construction in the near future, said Arthur Zuniga, real estate development manager for Fasken.

Read more at the Midland-Reporter Telegram.

Midland International Airport activity takes off 

(3/18/2014)

MIDLAND - The Midland International Airport has released enplanement, deplanement and other statistics for February 2014.

Midland International Airport Progress Report
  Feb.
2013
%
Chg.
Feb.
2014
Total enplanements 35,214 6.5 37,503
Total deplanements 35,010 5.2 36,847
Commercial landings 661 9.7 725


Read more at the Midland International Airport.

Midland-Odessa economy regains balance in 2014 

(3/17/2014)

MIDLAND - Over the past 47 months, the Midland-Odessa economies have grown 55 percent, according to economist Karr Ingham. January 2014, the 47th consecutive month of increase in the Midland-Odessa Regional Economic Index, was 5.5 percent above January 2013.

January 2014 retail spending was up 5.2 percent from January 2013, which was more than 16 percent higher than January 2012. Automotive spending was up 22.4 percent in January 2014 compared to January 2013 and was the biggest year-over-year gain in 14 months.

Building permit valuations issued by Midland and Odessa in January 2014 totaled $77.2 million, up 29.3 percent compared to January 2013. Additionally, January 2013 was more than 80 percent above January 2012.

The 109 new home construction permits issued in January 2014 is the highest on record for the month of January, and outpaced January 2013 by 5.8 percent.

There were 201 existing homes sold in January 2014, up 20.4 percent from 167 sold in January 2013. The average sales price continues to rise, with the January 2014 average of $229,253 up 5.3 percent from the January 2013 average of $217,706.

“The numbers will begin to reflect a cooling in construction activity, housing prices, and so on, first in terms of a slowdown in the rate of growth, and then perhaps by an actual decline at some point,” said Ingham.

When the economy comes into balance, it should continue expanding at normal rates and will be “a much bigger economy than it was ten, even five years ago,” said Ingham.

The area economy is transitioning from an economy established to accommodate $20 to $30 crude oil to one capable of accommodating $90 to $100 crude from unconventional resources. The current economic expansion has been technology-driven.

Midland and Odessa residents will see a growth rate of between 4 and 5 percent for the remainder of the year, according to Ingham.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Downtown Midland: 300-unit Sun Dance Creek underway 

(3/7/2014)

MIDLAND - Construction is underway on the $24 million, 300-unit Sun Dance Creek Apartments along Edwards St., north of downtown. Koontz McCombs is constructing the project.

The apartment complex, comprised of multiple three-story buildings, will have one- and two-bedroom units, a clubhouse, pool and a cabana building, according to Carl Fairchild, project superintendent.

The entire project should be finished within 14 to 16 months, but the clubhouse and the first 48 units are slated to be complete by September 2014.

Sun Dance Creek Apartments will be similar to other luxury apartments around Midland like the Blue Ridge Apartments and Midway Station apartments, according to Steve Thorpe, City of Midland building official.

One-bedroom apartments at Blue Ridge range between $1,367 and $1,412 a month. Rent for a two-bedroom apartment is currently between $1,587 and $1,672.

At Midway Station, a one-bedroom apartment’s rent sits between $1,399 and $1,625 a month. Two-bedroom apartments rent for between $1,825 and $2,010 a month.

San Antonio-based Koontz McCombs will oversee the construction, leasing and management of the apartments.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland Daybreak Estates set for 165 homes 

(3/5/2014)

MIDLAND - Daybreak Estates' final plat for about 165 single-family homes on 54.5 acres has been approved by the Midland Planning and Zoning Commission. The homes will be near Big Spring St. and Mockingbird Ln.

Daybreak Estates will be developed by Permian Homes and will offer seven different floor plans ranging from $209,990 to $294,990.

The smallest house has three bedrooms, two bathrooms and is about 2,460 sf, while the largest home design has two stories, four bedrooms, three bathrooms and is about 4,110 sf.

Other approved housing developments on Big Spring St., north of Loop 250 include Lone Star Trails with 952 homes and Adobe Meadows with 270 homes.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland office supply sales gushing  

(2/27/2014)

MIDLAND - Total Office Solution has been named the number one provider of Xerox products within similar-sized markets across the country. The store has seen about a 67 percent sales increase since 2008, according to co-owner Tommy McCrury.

In 2013, Total Office Solution recorded $12 million in sales, and about $5.5 million was from Xerox products — which exceeded expectations by about 177.4 percent, according to Rose Willis, Xerox’s regional vice president.

“Midland is definitely where the opportunity is, as far as accounts,” said McCrury. There are about 6,000 business establishments in Midland and Odessa.

Total Office Solution provides businesses with equipment, furniture, supplies and management services, or technology support. The business also has physical locations in Odessa and in San Angelo.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-News.

Home runs, match points love Midland  

(2/24/2014 8:00:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Each sporting event hosted in the Tall City brings between about $200,000 and $1.3 million from visitors spending, according to Brenda Kissko, a spokeswoman for the Midland Texas Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB).

The Schlumberger Tournament of Champions, a baseball tournament, is expected to bring in the largest chunk of cash — totaling more than $1.3 million, according to the CVB. The West Texas Classic Softball Tournament is projected to contribute $875,000 in direct visitor spending — the second highest of the events.

The U.S. Tennis Association — Texas Junior Team Tennis Spring Section Championships is estimated to draw about 750 people to the city, creating $700,000 in direct visitor spending between two nights.

The increased number of hotel rooms in Midland has really helped to drive down rates, allowing more teams to afford to stay here, according to Kissko. More than 1,600 hotel rooms were built in 2013, according to CVB statistics.

Sarah Marston, CVB sports sales manager expects Midland to get even more events in 2014, citing the benefit of having more available hotel rooms.

“We need sports to stay alive in Midland and I think our community knows that,” said Marston. “We’re ready to roll out the red carpet.”

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland office spaces mixing perks 

(2/20/2014)

MIDLAND - Conventional office space in Midland is giving way to more modern facilities that offer employees additional luxuries that were once only found in larger cities. As more oil industry headquarters, campuses and office buildings emerge around the city, the face of “traditional office space” continues to evolve.

Pioneer Natural Resources, currently located in the Bank of America Building, is constructing a six-story building within the ClayDesta Plaza that will house a day care center, cafeteria and fitness center.

Chevron is building a 340,000-sf campus on 25 acres west of the Scharbauer Sports Complex. A fitness center and cafeteria will also be included in the design.

Each Chevron floor will include a “town center,” which will provide employees an updated coffee bar and flatscreen televisions that feature company news.

Fasken Oil and Ranch Ltd. is constructing The Vineyard, a master-plan development that will include an apartment complex, an elementary school, retail shops and restaurants, single-family homes and a biking and hiking trail.

The first set of apartments, Sandstone Ridge, should be available for occupancy sometime during summer 2014.

Fasken’s new headquarters, located on the development, are already complete, and the company is now constructing two additional 58,000-sf buildings that will be leased to other oil companies. SM Energy Co. will move into one building, which should be finished by April 2014. The other building may have multiple tenants and should be complete by May 2014.

Despite the vast differences between each individual building and campus, employees working inside new oil-company facilities in Midland can expect their environments to be much more state-of-the-art than they once were.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland's Commons at Northpark plans 32,000-SF expansion 

(2/19/2014)

MIDLAND - The Midland Planning and Zoning Commission has approved a 32,000-sf expansion of the Commons at Northpark shopping center on four acres just east of the current development.

The new shopping center expansion will include a strip mall for several businesses to lease space in addition to two stand-alone buildings, which will likely house restaurants or smaller retail stores.

The expansion plan currently calls for six or seven businesses and 262 additional parking spaces for customers.

Lubbock-based Graco Real Estate Development Inc. developed the Commons at Northpark and will also develop the new shopping center.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland $2M boost to spaceport 

(2/12/2014)

MIDLAND - The Midland Spaceport Development Corp. accepted a $2 million grant from the Office of the Governor to help Midland International Airport’s spaceport grow.

The funds came from the state’s Spaceport Trust Fund, which was created by the Legislature to assist with infrastructure costs for spaceports. The goal of the fund is to create jobs and continue support of the space industry in Texas.

The $2 million will be used for spaceport-related capital improvement projects, according to Marv Esterly, director of airports.

“Two million dollars goes a long way to bring spaceport development to the City of Midland and diversifying our economy,” said John Love III, president of the Spaceport Development Corp. The corporation will be eligible to re-apply for the grant next year.

The aerospace industry’s presence in Midland began in 2012 when XCOR Aerospace announced its intent to relocate from Mojave, Calif. to Midland after agreeing a $10 million incentive package with the Midland Development Corp (MDC).

XCOR plans to launch one of its newest spacecraft, the Lynx, into space from the airport.

MDC previously struck a deal with another aerospace company, Orbital Outfitters. The spacesuit and spacecraft mockup company also will be moving to Midland. The arrival of XCOR was one of the reasons why Orbital Outfitters chose to relocate to Midland.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

See previous story Midland stellar deal with Orbital Outfitters.

Southwest loves another Houston flight to Midland 

(2/12/2014)

MIDLAND - Southwest Airlines will offer an additional direct flight between Midland International Airport and William P. Hobby Airport in Houston beginning in June 2014.

There will be four daily flights to and from Houston and Midland, according to Michelle Agnew, a Southwest spokeswoman. There are currently three daily flights.

Other direct Southwest flights are expected to stay the same, increasing the airlines’ total number of direct flights to 11. There are five direct flights to and from Dallas and two to and from Las Vegas.

Midland will not lose or gain any additional flights because of the repeal of the Wright Amendment, according to Marv Esterly, the city’s airport director.

Southwest has the largest market share in Midland with around 52 percent of those boarding an airplane at Midland International. In December 2013, 19,939 travelers boarded a Southwest plane, an increase of 2.6 percent compared to December 2012.

Midland International is the eighth largest airport in Texas and thirteenth for the southwest region, according to Esterly.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland tops! Global think tank says so 

(2/7/2014 6:45:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Midland has been ranked number one for employment growth and named the fastest-growing economy in the country for the second year in a row, according to IHS Global Insight, a global think tank.

Midland’s gross metro product (GMP) grew 7.5 percent in 2013, and had previously grown 14.4 percent in 2012 when compared to 2011. “The GMP is sort of the equivalent of GDP, just at the metro level,” said Ana Orozco, a principle economist with IHS.

About 6.3 percent more jobs were created in 2013 compared to 2012, the largest percent change in any city in the country.

In 2014, Midland’s projected GMP is 3.9 percent, which would make it the tenth best in the country. As far as job growth goes, Midland is expected to see a 3.4 percent increase during 2014.

Odessa is ranked second in both the real GMP, with a 6.7 percent increase, and highest year-over-year employment growth. In 2014, Odessa is anticipated to have a 3.1 percent gain in GMP and a 2.5 percent increase in job growth.

Colo.-based IHS Global Insight uses data from the United States Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland nonprofits open 42,000-SF facility 

(2/2/2014)

MIDLAND - The 42,000-sf Midland Shared Spaces opened its doors at 3500 N. A St. with 11 nonprofit organizations and their 60 employees housed under one roof. The building has space for 13 nonprofits.

The idea for a shared nonprofit facility is to offer a discounted rent by maintaining separate office spaces but sharing the cost of common areas, office supplies and IT services.

Tenants will pay a discounted rent of $8 per sf per year and share common areas such as a commercial kitchen, break rooms, conference rooms and a community room for lectures and banquets.

Each nonprofit’s office size is different — Mission Adult Day Services occupies the largest space, with nearly 9,000 sf, and Midland Opera Theater has the smallest, with a one-room office.

The building is environmentally green, with LED lighting, shared servers, trees to be planted around the perimeter and other conveniences. The lawn outside the building can hold more than 1,000 people and will serve as a space for fundraisers, shows and other events.

The building also includes two “flex offices” that can be leased by nonprofits — including those that are not tenants at Midland Shared Spaces — for up to one year.

The shared facility has been under construction since early 2013. Led by the Abell-Hanger Foundation, the initiative has raised nearly $10.5 million.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland: Pontikes buys land for plan in Westridge Park 

(1/30/2014 6:58:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Pontikes Development LLC has purchased 19 acres in the 100-acre Westridge Park, according to CB Richard Ellis (CBRE). SBC LP sold the property.

Pontikes plans to develop a complex consisting of approximately 500,000 sf of office space, including structured parking facilities. Construction plans will allow tenants to begin occupying the space in 2015.

Additionally, Chevron Corporation is constructing an approximately 350,000-sf facility adjacent to the Pontikes development within Westridge Park.

"Midland and its economy have experienced a great deal of growth in the last few years, and we expect to see this expansion continue into the future,” said Alan Feinsilver, president of Pontikes Development.

Westridge Park is currently Midland’s fastest growing multi-use development. The location is within proximity to numerous major retail, restaurant and hotel facilities, as well as to Loop 250 and Hwy. 191.

Pontikes Development is affiliated with Satterfield & Pontikes Construction Inc.

Source: CRBE

2013: Which city averaged 40 days on the housing market? 

(1/29/2014 9:00:00 AM)

MIDLAND - The average home price reached $254,680 in 2013, a 7 percent increase from the average in 2012, according to the Permian Basin Board of Realtors. August 2013 saw the largest home prices, with an average of $283,568.

The median home price in 2013 was $221,504, nearly an 8 percent increase from 2012.

The average number of days homes sat on the market in 2013 was 39.75. The average was 41 days in 2012, 55.75 days in 2011 and 65.67 days in 2010.

The average number of homes on the market in 2013 was 271 per month. In 2012, the average number was 277. That figure sat around 350 in 2011 and topped 500 in 2010.

The Midland City Council has approved the zoning for a subdivision in north Midland that will add about 900 new homes to the market.

The first of several phases of homes are expected to be on the market in September 2014, according to Rick Betenbough, president of Betenbough Homes.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland, San Angelo, Abilene drink from same cup 

(1/29/2014)

MIDLAND - The Cities of Midland, Abilene and San Angelo have formed the West Texas Water Partnership, a coalition addressing long-term water needs of the region. The municipalities will share costs and combine efforts to find enough drinking water.

“Nowhere else in the state are cities combining their resources to find a regional solution to their future water needs,” said Leah Mazzarelli, City of Abilene communications and media relations manager. City managers from each community jointly signed the same contract after their respective city council’s approval.

In Midland, a public-private partnership has begun delivering about 20 million gallons of water daily to 50,000 homes. 

The City of Midland worked with the Midland County Fresh Water Supply District No. 1 to develop the $200 million T-Bar Ranch water pipeline, which is estimated to provide 40 years of water. The district’s next project, the $30 million ClearWater Ranch water pipeline, merges with T-Bar’s water to give the distant water supply better quality and additional years of life.

In San Angelo, the $120 million Hickory Well Field provides 9 million gallons daily.

The City of Abilene signed a letter of intent to share existing and to-be-developed water supplies as part of the partnership.

The Abilene City Council has approved $17.25 million for phase 2 of the Hamby Wastewater Treatment Plant project. The council previously authorized $41.4 million for phase 1 of the project which began in December 2013.

The Cedar Ridge Reservoir project, located at a site 40 miles north of Abilene, could hold as much as 74 billion gallons of water. The reservoir, with a dam beside the Brazos River, could provide water for the Abilene region for 100 years.

The reservoir will provide 23,380 acre-feet per year of water starting in 2020, but the City of Abilene is still in the process of getting the required permits for Cedar Ridge.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram and the Abilene Reporter-News.

Midland stellar deal with Orbital Outfitters  

(1/28/2014)

MIDLAND - Orbital Outfitters will receive nearly $7 million from the Midland Development Corporation (MDC) for relocating its equipment and constructing a headquarters that includes an altitude chamber complex.

The economic development agreement includes:

$2.2 million for headquarters construction;
$3.2 million for altitude chamber complex construction; and
$1.5 million for salaries and relocation of equipment and other materials.

The MDC will own the chamber complex, but Orbital Outfitters will manage it. The altitude chamber could have practical applications beyond the aerospace industry such as the medical and engineering industries.

Orbital Outfitters will be the second space company that the MDC has attracted to the area; the first is XCOR Aerospace.

The arrival of both companies come at a time when Midland International Airport nears its completion of a spaceport designation license from the Federal Aviation Administration.

The MDC has plans for one or two additional incentive deals with aerospace companies. As they have discovered from the past five or six years, targeting one industry is much easier than attempting to lure many industries at once.

California-based Orbital Outfitters specializes in space suits and vehicle mockups.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram and Orbital Outfitters.

H-E-B calls on AT&T's 135,000-SF Midland property  

(1/24/2014 9:30:00 AM)

MIDLAND - The 135,000-sf former AT&T Call Center building, located at 5407 Andrews Hwy., has been purchased by H-E-B.

In 2013, the assessed value for the property was about $11.2 million, according to the Midland Central Appraisal District.

H-E-B operates an existing store at at 3325 W. Wadley Ave., less than five miles away from the new property.

The building opened in 2001 as a Cingular Wireless and later housed Builders Square, a home improvement retailer . AT&T officials announced the closure of the call center in June 2013, which meant a loss of about 100 jobs, according to the Midland Reporter-Telegram archives.

Read more at the Odessa American.

Play it again Midland! Permits a hit in 2013 

(1/10/2014 6:45:00 AM)

MIDLAND - For three years in a row, the City of Midland has issued a record number of housing permits as the population continued to grow.

The city issued 732 housing permits in 2013, an approximate 20 percent increase from the amount issued in 2012. Commercial permits also increased as the city issued 88 permits in 2013 compared to 58 in 2012.

The constant population increase caused by the oil boom and the subsequent high demand for housing played major roles in the record-breaking year that the city went through.

Betenbough Homes, with its nearly 700-unit Legends Park in West Midland, requested the most permits in 2013, according to Steve Thorpe, a city building official.

The number of housing permits in 2014 will be “level” with 2013’s number, according to Thorpe. However, the lack of infrastructure, such as water and sewer lines, could limit the capacity of the building community in 2014.

  2013 2012 %
Chg.
Midland Construction Permits and Values
New residential permits 732 598 18.31
New commercial permits 88 58 34.09
Total permits 9,550 9,328 2.32
Construction value $836,692,614 $339,812,837 59.39

Source: City of Midland

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland International Airport busy with activity 

(1/10/2014)

MIDLAND - The Midland International Airport has released enplanement, deplanement and other statistics for December 2013.

  Dec. 2013 %
Chg.
Dec. 2012
Midland International Airport Progress Report
Total enplanements 42,590 3.9 40,984
Total deplanements 41,789 6.7 39,163
Commercial landings 797 14.2 698


Read more at the Midland International Airport.

Pioneer eyes $50M office; 3Q 2014 move-in  

(1/7/2014)

MIDLAND - Construction of Pioneer Natural Resources’ new $50 million office building at ClayDesta Plaza remains on schedule, according to Danny Barker, company director of facilities.

Pioneer’s Midland employees will begin moving into the new six-story building in third quarter 2014 and all estimated employees will be settled into the new building by fourth quarter 2014.

The new building will house a cafeteria, daycare center and fitness center complete with locker rooms. A three-story parking garage will be constructed adjacent to the new office building.

The company has expanded its mobile home park on Midland’s east side and has moved into a new pumping services building on County Rd. 307, near the Midland Tank Farm. The pumping services building houses the company’s frac crews.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Greenwood ISD approves 160,000-SF Midland school  

(12/19/2013)

MIDLAND - The Greenwood ISD Board of Trustees has approved project plans for the 160,000-sf Brooks Middle School. The school will serve about 900 students in fifth through eighth grades.

The campus will be designed in a manner that would allow for a 77,000-sf addition for third and fourth grades, should future enrollment growth call for it.

The $51.5 million bond package approved in May 2013 allotted about $37.4 million for the construction of the new school.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland housing 3Q 2013: Coldwell Banker Covenant 

(12/10/2013)

MIDLAND - Median home prices increased by nearly 7 percent in third quarter 2013 from 2Q 2013, and have increased by 17.5 percent on a year-over-year basis, making Midland one of the highest price growth cities in both Texas and the nation.

Marketing times in Midland are quite low, having dropped to under one month on average, down almost one week from 2012.

Months-of-supply also remains low, hovering around two months for the past several quarters. Six months of inventory is considered by many to be a normal supply-demand condition, however that has typically been a high point in the Midland market.

  3Q
2012
3Q
2013
Y-O-Y
Chg.
Key Midland Home Statistics
Avg. sales price $237,332 $271,038 14.2%
Avg. $/SF $104 $117 12.8%
Median sales price $200,000 $235,000 17.5%
DOM 38 29 -23.3%
Sale % of list 98.1% 98.4% 0.3%
# of sales 528 490 -7.2%
Listed inventory 359 326 -9.2%


Source: Coldwell Banker Covenant

Also see Coldwell Banker Covenant's full report under housing in Midland Data Sources.

Record construction in Midland, Odessa tops $1B 

(12/5/2013)

MIDLAND-ODESSA - The City of Midland and the City of Odessa have issued a combined $1.126 billion in construction permits as of October 2013, according to economist Karr Ingham. The previous record of $754 million was set in 2012.

October 2013 building permit values were 140.2 percent higher than October 2012, and through the first ten months of 2013, values are up 70.6 percent compared to the same period in 2012.

The Midland-Odessa Regional economic Index posted its 44th consecutive monthly increase in October 2013, gaining 7.9 percent over October 2012. However, every month in 2013 has seen a decline in the rate of growth compared to 2012, from 13.9 percent in January 2013 to 7.9 percent in October 2013.

A slight flattening of the index began in late 2012, but given the stresses rapid economic growth has put on Midland-Odessa’s housing, labor force, roads and other infrastructure that may not be a bad thing.

Retail sales were up 10.3 percent in October 2013 compared to October 2012. Since retail sales bottomed out in 2009, spending is up about 75 percent through October 2013, which is more than double October 2009 spending.

An estimated 7,700 jobs were added to the combined metro area economy over the last 12 months, nearly 3,500 of which were with oil and gas companies. The year-over-year growth rate of nearly 5 percent continues to top all Texas, and most national metros.

Midland and Odessa issued 112 new housing permits in October 2013, up 17.9 percent from 95 in October 2012, which was up more than 50 percent compared to October 2011. To date in 2013, the two cities have issued 1,142 new housing permits, up 20.2 percent from the 950 issued during the same period in 2012.

Existing home sales remained flat, with 258 homes selling in October 2013, compared to 256 in October 2012. The October 2013 home sales price averaged $232,329, up 7.5 percent from $216,191 in October 2012.

The only negative in the October 2013 index was seen in hotel-motel tax collections, which were down 2 percent compared to October 2012. The decline suggests enough new hotel room capacity has been added to take pressure off demand for hotel rooms.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland International Airport activity: October 2013  

(11/26/2013)

MIDLAND - The Midland International Airport has released enplanement, deplanement and other statistics for October 2013.

  October
2013
October
2012
%
Change
Midland International Airport Progress Report October 2013
Total enplanements 45,286 42,244  7.2
Total deplanements 44,080 42,280 4.3
Total passengers 89,366 84,524 5.7
Commercial landings 845 686 23.2


Read more at the Midland International Airport.

Midlandís average personal income per capita tops 

(11/22/2013)

MIDLAND - For the third straight year, Midland is the nation’s fastest growing MSA in terms of personal income, growing 12.1 percent from 2011 to 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Midland’s average per capita income was $53,161 in 2009. In 2012, the average was $83,049, a gain of 56.22 percent from 2009 and the highest per capita income in the nation.

Area 2009 2012 % Chg.
Average Personal Income Per Capita in Texas Areas*
Midland $53,161 $83,049 56.22
Houston-Sugar Land-The Woodlands $43,291 $51,004 17.82
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington $40,485 $46,136 13.96
Austin-Round Rock $38,270 $42,902 12.10
Odessa $32,216 $42,698 32.54
San Angelo $34,848 $39,711 13.95
Abilene $33,122 $37,918 14.48
Lubbock $32,345 $36,074 11.53

* ranked by 2012 income

Source: The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

2,800 Self-storage units sold in Midland and DFW for $27M 

(11/21/2013 7:45:00 AM)

MIDLAND, DFW AREA - Strategic Storage Trust Inc. (SSTI) has acquired five self-storage properties in Midland and the DFW Metroplex for a total of approximately $27 million. The properties totaled about 390,000 sf in 2,800 units.

The five-property acquisition includes:
•  1712 W. Randol Mill Rd. in Arlington (445 units, 59,495 sf)
•  810 S. Denton Tap Rd. in Coppell (740 units, 101,735 sf)
•  5005 Andrews Hwy. in Midland (615 units, 92,820 sf)
•  1904 W. Loop 250 N. in Midland (535 units, 75,800 sf)
•  1925 S. Bowie Dr. in Weatherford (470 units, 61,995 sf)

These, along with four additional properties acquired by SSTI in Alabama and Tennessee, will be rebranded under the SmartStop Self Storage name.

Source: U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

Listen to Podcast 196 that highlights Small Towns, Big Deals including
Santa Rosa: the sweetest little town in Texas
Abilene home sales stable; and 
Coca-Cola to pop in new 81,000-SF Amarillo facility.

For self-storage market information for all 25 MSAs, see SpareFoot Self-Storage data under retail in Market Data Sources!

Midland expecting 2,000 units by spring 2014 

(11/1/2013 6:45:00 AM)

MIDLAND - New apartment complexes are being built across the city, but Midlanders will not see any relief before first quarter 2014, when a significant amount of new units are set to open, according to city officials.

The last new complexes of apartments that opened were both in 2011 — the Blue Ridge Apartments and the Gateway Plaza Apartments.

“The new apartments will help ease the housing crunch. A year from now, it might solve the housing shortage,” said Steve Thorpe, City of Midland building official.

Apartments that currently have building permits, according to City of Midland Code Administration, are listed below.

Apartment Complexes Coming to Midland*
Complex Name # of
Units
Address Area**
Wadley Avenue Apartments 290 Wadley Ave. and Whittle Way
Midway Station 216 3700 North A St.
Tradewind Apartments 214 Tradewinds Blvd.
Mesquite Terrace 200 Loop 250 and Leisure Dr.
Sandstone Ridge 176 Sherwood Dr. and Holiday Hill
Wall Street Lofts 110 Wall St. and Main St.
Playa del Pueblo 96 611 E. I-20
Sunrise at Fairgrounds 54 1400 Fairgrounds Rd.
Westwood Villas 52 4100 W. Illinois Ave.

* listed by unit totals
**addresses may be preliminary

Source: City of Midland Code Administration and Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland new furniture store not run-of-the-mill 

(11/1/2013)

MIDLAND - Bob Mills Furniture has opened its new location at 3111 W. Cuthbert Ave., a former Rooms To Go store. The new store, with 60,000 sf of showroom and warehouse space, will employ 30 to 35 people.

The sales staff is paid a flat salary rather than commission and the company has a “companion pricing” strategy, offering furniture groupings for less.

Oklahoma City-based Bob Mills also has locations in Odessa, Lubbock and Amarillo.

The Tall City’s thriving economy, fueled by the oil and gas industry, has brought expanded locations for Carter’s Furniture and Rooms To Go, the arrival of Haverty Furniture Co., along with Furniture Row and Ashley’s Furniture on Loop 250.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Listen to Podcast 192...for this story and more!

Gushing oil: Permian Basin still leads U.S. 

(10/29/2013)

PERMIAN BASIN - The Permian’s production has increased by 93,000 barrels per day year-over-year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. The area is still the largest oil producer in the United States.

Production in the basin has increased steadily in recent years, hitting the 1 million-barrels-per-day point in 2011. It is projected to reach 1.3 million barrels of oil per day in October 2013.

The Eagle Ford reached the 1 million-barrels-per-day point in August 2013 and is projected to reach 1.1 million barrels per day in October 2013.

Several Houston companies have assets in the top plays. Occidental Permian Ltd. had the most production in the Permian for the first six months of 2013, with 20 million barrels.

The Bakken in North Dakota and the Eagle Ford in south Texas together account for 75 percent of current monthly oil production growth across the six regions the agency is tracking. Those regions include the Niobrara in Colorado and Wyoming, the Haynesville in east Texas and west Louisiana, and the Marcellus basin in Pennsylvania.

All together, the six basins represent almost 90 percent of domestic oil production and most domestic natural gas production growth in the past two years.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Border States opens in Midland territory  

(10/14/2013)

MIDLAND - Border States Electric has opened its new facility at 5206 Princeton Ave. The new location has 10,670 sf for office and 18,000 sf for the warehouse. The estimated cost of construction was $3.2 million, according to state filings.

The previous Border States Midland location was at 3303 W. Illinois Ave. "Growth in the Midland region, including energy, is a factor in the move to our new location," said Tom Nelson, BSE's corporate communications director.

In addition to the increased office space, the new location features a ten-acre lot with easy access for both contractors and tractor-trailers delivering product.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

See previous story Border States electrifies Midland with growth.

Midland-Odessa Index rises for 45th month 

(10/3/2013)

MIDLAND - The August 2013 Midland-Odessa Regional Economic Index was recorded at 212.3, an 8.7 percent increase from the August 2012 recording of 195.3.

August 2013 represented the 45th consecutive month of economic growth, according to Amarillo economist Karr Ingham.

Average housing prices in Odessa and Midland reached a record high of more than $250,000 in August 2013. The August 2012 to August 2013 increase in housing prices was about 17 percent. In Midland, the average price was more than $300,000.

However, the number of sales actually declined, which Ingham attributed to people not being able to keep up with prices. “Not every household income is going up at the level housing prices are,” said Ingham. “In fact, most people’s probably are not.”

There are normally between 500 and 600 homes on the market, but a low of 215 was reached in July 2013; Odessa reached a low of about 200 from an average of about 400, according to Bobby McCourt, president of the Permian Basin Board of Realtors.

During summer 2013, houses were selling in an average 28 days in Midland and an average 38 in Odessa, said McCourt.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency reported a 7.47 percent increase in second quarter 2013 Midland housing prices compared to 2Q 2012. In Odessa, the increase was 9.53 percent.

While the region’s oil-fueled economy continues to expand, the rate of growth appears to be normalizing to levels that might allow infrastructure to catch up.

The Energy Information Administration and others have forecasted that crude oil prices in 2014 will average in the mid-$90 per barrel range. Ingham said those prices would sustain growth at a high but less extreme level.

Read more at the Odessa American.

Midland's unemployment rate lowest in Texas 

(9/25/2013)

MIDLAND - Unemployment in the Midland MSA was 3.2 percent in August 2013: a decline from the July 2013 rate of 3.5 percent, and the August 2012 rate of 3.5 percent, according to the Texas Workforce commission (TWC).

Midland recorded the lowest unemployment rate in Texas.

The drop in unemployment was largely due to a smaller labor force, which declined to 95,687 in August 2013 from 96,151 in July 2013. The number of employed Midlanders declined to 92,598 in August from 92,800 in July, while the number of unemployed Midlanders also fell to 3,089 from 3,351 in July.

The Tall City added 3,800 jobs from August 2012 to August 2013 for a growth rate of 4.6 percent.

Virtually all industrial sectors added jobs during the 12 months with only the government, education and health services and information losing 200 jobs each. The mining, logging and construction, sector, which includes oil and gas, added 2,500 jobs for a growth rate of 10.9 percent.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

For all Texas areas, see the Texas Workforce Commission.

Building by building: Midland CBD office statistics 2013 

(9/24/2013 7:30:00 AM)

MIDLAND - The Midland Development Corporation has released 2013 office space. The full report is available under the industrial category at Midland Market Data Sources.

Selected Midland CBD Class AA, A-B Office 2013*
Building Class Size Leased Rate
SF/YR.
Fasken Center AA 421,546 sf 100% $23
Bank of America Tower A-B 329,777 sf 99% $20
ARCO Building (Paragon) AA 223,368 sf 100% $19
Wilco Tower A-B 197,207 sf 95% $17
Mobil Building (Pure) AA 182,062 sf 100% $20
Centennial Tower AA 179,750 sf 100% $22
WNB Tower A-B 177,744 sf 100% $22
Independence Plaza AA 153,400 sf 100% $20
The Summit Building AA 148,936 sf 98% $22
Dinero Plaza A-B 121,454 sf 100% $18

*Selected ten in AA and A-B Class.

Read more at Midland Development Corporation.

See Midland NewsTalk Texas for more Midland real estate news.

Energy tower sparks already energized Midland 

(9/20/2013 4:00:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Due to the oil play western Texas, the Midland real estate market has been on fire. AngeloEconomics estimates more than 1.5 million sf of office space, 530 new hotel rooms, 12,289 multifamily units and 800,000 sf of retail space will be needed by 2023. 

Projected New Office, Hotel, Multifamily, Retail Space Needed by 2023*
Category Total Existing Pipeline Total SF Needed
by 2023**
Total New SF
Needed by 2013***
Energy
Tower
Office sf (June 2013) 9,935,477 1,104,000 12,548,507 1,509,030 564,000
Hotel rooms (2012) 3,000 1,301 4,831 530 198
Multifamily units (Mar. 2013) 9,825 1,866 12,980 1,289 132
Retail sf (2012) 6,677,968 50,000 7,526,070 798,102 53,500

*AngelouEconomics

**Office space and hotel rooms needed by 2023 are based on job growth projection of 52.6 percent. Multifamily units and retail space needed by 2023 are based on population growth projection of 25.4 percent. Hotel rooms and multifamily units include additional space necessary to achieve occupancy rates that mirror Texas state averages.

***Total new construction needed by 2023 = Total needed space by 2023 — (Total Existing Space + Pipeline).

Source: Midland Economic Development Corporation

Midland gushes jobs  

(9/18/2013 9:00:00 AM)

MIDLAND - From 2002 to 2012, Midland County gained 27,585 jobs, a 52.6 percent growth rate. The county is projected to gain 19,461 new jobs between 2013 and 2023.

The Permian Basin region will continue to be the largest and most important on-shore oil and gas production region in North America for many years. Most projections point to a 50 to 100 percent increase in crude oil production by 2016 compared to 2012 levels, which were well over 1 million barrels per day.

Several major business expansions in Midland and Odessa will lead to hundreds of millions of dollars of direct capital investment and thousands of direct, indirect and induced jobs.

Major Expansions (2012-2013)*
Company Direct Impact on Midland
Economy
XCOR Aerospace $12 million capital investment,
100 new jobs
Concho
Resources
Renovation of downtown office building
for corporate headquarters
Pioneer Natural
Resources
$50 million capital investment,
300 to 400 new jobs
Chevron $100 million capital investment,
up to 270 new jobs
EOG Resources 86,000-sf regional headquarters
Devon Energy $2.5 million capital investment,
60 new jobs
Baker Hughes** $22 million capital investment
Halliburton** $13 million capital investment
TMK IPSCO** $17 million capital investment,
100 new jobs

*AngelouEconomics

**Odessa

Source: Midland Economic Development Corporation

Permian Basin on track for top shale oil producer 

(9/17/2013 1:00:00 PM)

PERMIAN BASIN - Between January and June of 2013, the Permian Basin has already surpassed oil production in the Eagle Ford, showing 889,808 barrels each day compared to the 598,706 barrels per day in South Texas, according to the Texas Railroad Commission.

The top producer in the Permian Basin is Houston’s Occidental Permian Ltd., which produced more than 20 million barrels during first half 2013.

Irving-based Pioneer Natural Resources USA Inc. was next with more than 12 million barrels of oil production, and rounding out the top three was Houston’s Apache Corp., which produced almost 10 million barrels.

The Permian Basin oil production will reach 2 million barrels of oil per day within the next five years, said Stephen Shepherd, an associate in the exploration and production research group at Simmons and Company International in Houston.

As production moderates in the Dakotas' Bakken Shale, the Permian is expected to fill the gap, said Shepherd. Simmons and Company expects the Eagle Ford to surpass the Bakken in oil production sometime in 2014.

In 2013, the Eagle Ford is on track to produce about 930,000 barrels of oil per day. The Williston Basin in the Bakken Shale is producing in 2013 a little more than 1 million barrels, and those two are expected to flip in 2014. The Permian should produce around 1.4 million in 2013.

The Eagle Ford is expected to continue at the current pace while the Permian will accelerate production, driven by horizontal drilling.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Midlandís Cinergy tags cinemas, lasers and more 

(9/2/2013)

MIDLAND - The 50,300-sf Cinergy Cinema complex, located at 1917 Liberty Rd. in Gateway Plaza, has opened. The entertainment complex includes 11 movie screens, a 70-foot Hyper Digital Experience screen, the largest between Dallas-Fort Worth and Phoenix; the next largest screen will be 50 feet.

Complex amenities include

  • a two-story, 5,000-sf, 58-person Lasertron laser tag arena;
     
  • a 2,000-foot black light elevated ropes course above the lobby and arcade;
     
  • five big party rooms;
     
  • an arcade and gaming area with more than 50 games; and
     
  • various dining options.
     

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Million-dollar homes hit the ĎPaní and West Texas 

(8/27/2013)

WEST TEXAS, PANHANDLE COUNTIES - In Midland County, the number of single-family homes valued at $1 million or more has increased from five in 2005 to 104 in 2013. The Midland Central Appraisal District reported 41 single-family residences were added to the tax rolls in 2013 alone.

The area with the most million-dollar single-family homes — with 47 — is between Big Spring Dr./Hwy. 349 and Midkiff Rd., north of Bluebird Ln. There are 17 homes listed as being in Odessa but also in Midland County.

The Reporter-Telegram, in conjunction with a MyWestTexas.com presentation of the most expensive 100 houses in Midland County, requested the total number of million-dollar single-family residences in each of the major West Texas and Panhandle metropolitan areas.

Another 20 properties are valued at $1 million or more in the county but are listed as “E1” or “Real Farm-Ranch House +/- five acres.” There are 49 single-family residences on land covering two acres or more.

Million-dollar Single-family Homes in Major Counties Across West Texas*
County Population Number of million-
dollar homes
**Midland 146,645  104
Potter/Randall 255,808 69
Lubbock 285,760 61
Ector 144,325 26
Taylor 133,473  13
Tom Green 113,281  7

*Largest metropolitan area in the county: Midland (Midland), Ector (Odessa), Taylor (Abilene), Lubbock (Lubbock), Tom Green (San Angelo) and Potter/Randall (Amarillo).

**Midland County does not include properties classified as “E1” or “Real Farm-Ranch House +/- five acres.”

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Permian Basin oil and gas adds jobs 

(8/19/2013)

PERMIAN BASIN - The Texas Permian Basin Petroleum Index rose again in June 2013, coming in 4.9 percent above June 2012 levels.

The Permian Basin oil and gas industry continues to create jobs at a fast pace, with employment averaging 30,795 in June 2013, up 12 percent from June 2012 and 30,160 so far in 2013, up 14.7 percent in the same period in 2012.

High drilling activity continued to lift Permian Basin oil production volumes, which were up 2.1 percent in June 2013 over June 2012 and are up 4 percent so far this year compared to 2012.

Strong prices also improved the value of June 2013 oil production to $2.62 billion, up 18.9 percent from $2.2 billion in June 2012. For 2013, the value of oil production slipped 0.2 percent to $15.233 billion from $15.26 billion in 2012.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Business is ripe in Midlandís vineyard  

(8/19/2013)

MIDLAND - Ground has been broken on a new 58,000-sf, two-story office building at The Vineyard at Fasken Oil and Ranch Office Park on Holiday Hill Rd.

The building will serve as the regional headquarters for SM Energy which currently has 75 employees, but will add another 50 jobs once the building is completed in March 2014. The company also has an option to build a second building at a later date.

Situated on 1,000 acres on the C Bar Ranch, The Vineyard is an effort by Fasken to diversify away from being primarily an oil and gas company.

In addition to SM Energy's building, construction on a spec office building has also begun. The buildings are estimated to cost a combined $15 million. The office park may hold up to seven office buildings.

The Vineyard will also feature a 176-unit apartment complex currently under construction along with single-family residences and an elementary school.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Border States electrifies Midland with growth 

(8/8/2013)

MIDLAND - Border States Electric will open in its new 28,000-sf facility at 5206 Princeton Ave. in September 2013, according to Midland Manager Trish Marquez. The estimated cost of construction was $3.2 million, according to state filings.

The new building, situated on ten acres, will include 10,000 sf for offices and an 18,000-sf warehouse.

"We've experienced unprecedented growth" in Midland, said Marquez. The growth has led to increased staffing, going from eight employees to 26 currently, and hires have already been made for the new facility.

Border States, an employee-owned company, offers chemicals, lubricants and paints, and electrical supplies. The company is currently located in part of the former Dunlaps location at 3303 W. Illinois Ave.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram and Border States.

The Residence at Midland brings 290 high-end units 

(8/7/2013)

MIDLAND - The Residence at Midland, a 290-unit high-end apartment complex will break ground in September 2013 at the southwestern corner of the Deauville Blvd. and Tradewinds Blvd. intersection.

The first units will open in September 2014, but the total construction time for all units to be completed is 18 months, according to Jay Stewart, with Houston-based firm Parkcrest Builders.

The apartment buildings in the northern portion of the property, near the Chevron campus will be three stories. The southern buildings next to Legends Park will be two stories.

The Residence at Midland would be the first apartment complex near the Scharbauer Sports Complex and west of Loop 250. The area also includes housing subdivisions such as Legends Park, Chevron’s campus and hotels.

“We like the proximity to (Interstate 20) there,” said Stewart. “It has easy access to Loop 250, which would be good for people commuting to both Midland and Odessa.”

The complex will have one entrance each on Deauville Blvd. and Tradewinds Blvd., said Martin Siwek, planner for the city’s planning division.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Big Spring C-Container housing option 

(8/1/2013 7:05:00 AM)

BIG SPRING, HOWARD COUNTY - Living in Big Spring just got easier as the city has approved alternative housing. Council members voted to allow boxcar housing in certain areas.

With the oil boom continuing to thrive, more and more people are moving to West Texas. The city is dealing with the housing shortage in an unusual way, even if it is not the most attractive looking.

"This is a need — don't get me wrong, I think we can make some money off of it after everything's done and paid for but it's a need that's helping people," Don Avant, one of the co-founders of the alternative housing project, said.

Audrey Key moved into the very first boxcar. With year-long waiting lists for apartments, she was out of options. She said that moving in was easy since there was literally nowhere else to go that was affordable.

The houses come with full amenities, furniture and maintenance support for $1,200 per month.

There are currently about 50 people living in C-Container housing.

Read more and see the video at KWES NewsWest9.

Listen to Podcast 181 for this story...and more!

Midland Hotel Fuel heads to United Life 

(7/29/2013)

MIDLAND - The old Western United Life Building will be transformed into a high-end hotel — Hotel Fuel.

The building has been vacant for more than ten years. But Mahendra Patel and his son, Sagar Kumar (who heads the investment group JCM Furnishings), saw a vision to use the "beautiful" building for their next project.

The former office space on the corner of West Texas Ave. and Colorado will be open late next year.

In its place will be 142 apartment-like rooms, gyms and meeting rooms on every floor, along with restaurants and retail shops among other lounge space.

"You see an old building that everybody else is saying 'knock it down, tear it down!' They're saying, 'Oh no, let's make it beautiful," Trost said.

According to Patel, there are so many hidden costs when you do remodel work but it costs less than when you're building from scratch. He said that resurrecting a brand new building in this economy would cost about $50 million.

The actual cost for them is about $9 to $10 million. Patel also estimates the hotel will lead to about 50 to 80 permanent jobs, in addition to about 70 temporary construction jobs. The renovation is set to start in October.

Patel has a few hotels in the Midland-Odessa area. Consequentially, he said he is well aware of the market's ups and downs. That is why they have a contingency plan to be able to lease the double-sized rooms out as apartments.

Read more at NewsWest9.

Midland much ado about teachers 

(7/23/2013 7:00:00 AM)

MIDLAND - Midland’s city council approved a temporary land use permit for a 70-unit manufactured home development to alleviate the housing issues for Midland Independent School District (MISD) employees.

The MISD starting teaching salary is $48,000, and in 2012, Midland County had the second highest income per capita in the United States at $65,173.

However, monthly rent continues to rise in the Permian Basin, from $568 a month for an unfurnished one-bedroom apartment in 2011 to $779 in 2013, according to the latest Chamber of Commerce annual apartment survey.

Raises — $2,000 for teachers, 4 percent for clerical, technical and manual trades support staff, 4 percent for administrators on teacher salary schedule and 2 percent for executive directors, based on the midpoint salaries — were approved by MISD trustees as means to help all staff members combat the rising cost of living.

Additionally, a donation of $3.3 million from the Scharbauer Foundation to fund rental assistance up to 40 percent, and an apartment locator hotline run by WesTex Communities should provide teachers relief from the volatile housing market, said Superintendent Ryder Warren.

Read more at the Odessa American and the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Permian Rail Park to open in 2014 

(7/10/2013)

BIG SPRING, MIDLAND - Frontier Logistics and Kyle Kinsel Co., developers of Mission Rail Park, will begin constructing a 550-acre rail-equipped industrial facility, situated between Big Spring and Midland.

The Permian Rail Park, slated to open in second quarter 2014, will be situated in the Wolfcamp and Cline Shale plays in the Permian Basin. It's also 100 miles of the Delaware Basin’s Bone Springs Shale, Avalon Shale and Wolfbone play.

"Permian Park is important because it is located within four miles of ten major pipelines used to carry petroleum products to and from refineries," Kyle Kinsel, the developer said. "This makes it an ideal location for crude oil storage, blending or processing facility. We also see this as a logistical hub for the Cline and Wolfcamp shale plays."

The Rail Park will serve industrial tenants ranging from large distribution and manufacturing facilities to small rail users, the developers added. It will also house oilfield service and pipeline operations that need rail to move products to and from nearby shale plays.

"It will be the only rail facility capable of accepting unit trains on the eastern side of the Permian Basin which is essential in servicing the increasing production from the Cline and Wolfcamp Shale plays," Kinsel added. "What is key is our ability to tap into pipelines giving our customers the option to load and store crude by rail or pipeline."

The Permian Basin, a 102,000-square mile region that is considered the largest U.S. oil basin, has produced around 30 billion barrels since the early 1920s. Companies filed 845 oil and gas drilling permits in February alone in the basin, according to the Texas Railroad Commission (TRC).

Read more at Rigzone.com.

Landpoint hiring to serve pipeline operators in Victoria 

(7/9/2013)

VICTORIA - Land-surveying firm Landpoint Inc. is expanding into the Eagle Ford Shale, adding up to 30 employees to handle work on South Texas’ expanding pipeline infrastructure.

Bossier City, La.-based Landpoint uses high-definition scanning technologies in conjunction with GPS and conventional surveying methods during development of pipeline projects.

The company’s new work crews initially will operate out of its office in Victoria. However, Business Development Manager Robert Behrendt says the company could open additional locations across the shale as work expands.

In addition to its Victoria office, Landpoint has four other locations around the United States. The company will open a Midland office in the next 60 days.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Economic growth remains strong in Midland-Odessa 

(7/8/2013)

MIDLAND, ODESSA - Economic growth remained strong in Midland-Odessa, according to the May Midland-Odessa Regional Economic Index.

Amarillo Economist Karr Ingham said the May index is 10.8 percent above the May 2012 index. The rate of growth has narrowed slowly but steadily.

“In fact, this would be the desired outcome. Rates of growth would not and could not continue at peak levels. However, a sharp peak followed by a nosedive would not be the preferred outcome, of course,” Ingham said.

While the index remains on the rise, it does so at a moderate pace “as the general economy and the regional oil and gas economy continue to flatten a bit, though at very high levels,” he said.

Ingham's May figures may appear flat compared to year-ago levels but stressed that year-ago levels were very high.

Growth in employment is a characteristic of local economic expansion, and Midland-Odessa unemployment remains among the state’s lowest.

Year-over-year employment growth has narrowed slightly but steadily so far this year, with estimated total employment up 5.3 percent over May 2012, which was up over 8 percent from May 2011.

Construction activity in Midland-Odessa remains on the rise with the valuation of all building permits issued up by 11.2 percent year-over-year and by 32.5 percent thus far in 2013 compared to the first five months of a year ago, which in turn was nearly double that of the previous year.

“Housing construction continues to expand as well, with new single-family residential building permits up by nearly 14 percent and 19 percent for the month and year-to-date, respectively. And again, these come on top of some high numbers from a year ago,” Ingham said.

The only negative in the index remained existing home sales, a trend Ingham attributed to tight inventory. May existing home sales fell 3.2 percent compared to last May but are up 2.4 percent so far this year compared to the previous year.

The May sales price averaged $222,837, up 1.8 percent from $219,000 last May. The year-to-date average of $213,071 is 3 percent higher than last year’s year-to-date average of $206,770.

Last year’s year-to-date average was more than 12 percent higher than the first five months of 2011.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland issues $107M in building permits in one week 

(6/27/2013 2:00:00 PM)

MIDLAND - A number of major construction projects completed the approval process at the same time, helping the city of Midland issue $107.5 million in building permits during the week of June 17, 2013.

“It was a good week,” said Steve Thorpe, city building official. He said approval for final plans allowed construction to begin on the projects.

Among the permits issued:

  • W.E. Bellows received a $57.8 million permit to begin construction of Pioneer Natural Resources’ new office building at 3617 N. Big Spring St.
  • CF Jordan Construction received a $15 million permit for two new office buildings totaling 110,000 sf in Fasken Oil & Ranch’s Vineyard development at 6301 Holiday Hill Rd.
  • The city issued a $14.8 million permit to Schlumberger for construction at 7220 W. I-20 and a $6 million permit for a new Candlewood Suites at 110 W. Longview Ave.
  • MW Builders of Texas took out a $5.8 million permit to renovate a building at 3510 N. A St. for Midland Shared Spaces.
  • Kent Oil received a $2 million permit to build a new Kent Kwik at 1709 Rankin Hwy.
  • Aztec A-1 Storage received a $1.3 million permit for new storage units at 1219 S. Midland Dr.


He expects this week to be another big week for his department.

“We just talked with Chevron,” he said about permits for the company’s $100 million campus west of the Scharbauer Sports Complex.

Thorpe said the city doesn’t keep track of weekly totals so he wasn’t certain if last week’s $107 million was a record. He said that through the end of May, the city had issued $178 million in building permits, compared to $157 million during the same period last year.

Application fees cover his department’s operating expenses, and any excess is turned over to the city’s general revenue fund.

“So in a roundabout way we’re helping lower the tax burden,” Thorpe said.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Lowest unemployment in Texas? Midland, Odessa 

(6/24/2013)

MIDLAND, ODESSA - Midland and Odessa top the list of cities with the lowest unemployment in the state.

According to the Texas Workforce Commission, the City of Midland has the lowest unemployment rate at 3.4 percent, followed by Odessa at 4.1 percent.

Amarillo is at 4.8 percent.

Meanwhile, construction has remained the fastest growing major industry in the state, based on a 6.7 percent growth rate.

Read more at CBS7KOSA.com.

Looking for a job? One-way ticket to Midland 

(6/13/2013 7:00:00 AM)

MIDLAND - New figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics confirm what everybody already knows: If you’re looking for a job in Cleveland, Ohio, your best bet is a one-way ticket to Midland, Texas.

Midland is not the most scenic spot in the U.S., but the average rent on an apartment there is nearly twice what it is in nearby cities of comparable size, and rents are up more than 20 percent year over year — if you are lucky enough to get an apartment.

Official unemployment is about 3 percent; real unemployment is effectively zero. The reason for that is a booming energy industry.

Whereas previous Texas oil-and-gas booms have been driven largely by prices, this boom is underway when oil prices are high but not dramatically so, and natural-gas prices are on the low side (last year, they were at 13-year lows). This isn’t a price bubble, but real production improvements driven by technological advances.

Nellwyn Barnett of the Midland Chamber of Commerce is not telling any fairy tales. Sure, the capital of the West Texas oil patch has tried to diversify its economy, and has had some success, but it’s still an energy town.

“Rather than try to paint a picture of a diversified economy for the media, we embrace energy. But there has been a great deal of diversification within the industry, which gives us a lot more stability than we’ve had in our past," Barnett said.

The downside, if you want to call it that, is that Midland and the surrounding areas have been left with some pretty high-class problems: There are not enough houses and apartments for all of the new workers flooding into the Permian Basin, and the allure of high-wage jobs in the energy industry has made it hard to hire people for jobs in retail, services and education.

Last year, Midland was obliged to petition the state for waivers of student-teacher-ratio rules in its schools. Getting back within state guidelines has meant hiring new teachers, which has been a challenge with so much competition from the energy business.

Educational institutions are a critical factor: Midland College, the University of Texas of the Permian Basin and Texas Tech University all offer energy-oriented academic programs that help keep the oil and gas rigs staffed.

According to a 2012 report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, Midland had a higher per capita income than did Silicon Valley, and the second-highest per capita income in the nation, trailing only the posh Connecticut suburbs of New York City.

“West Texas is not for everyone,” Barnett says. “For people relocating from other parts of the country, it can be startling.” In other words: It ain’t pretty, but it works. “But,” she adds, “if you want a job in Midland, Texas, you can find it.”

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram and the National Review Online.

Midland-Odessa economy continues expansion 

(6/7/2013)

MIDLAND-ODESSA - Extremely strong economic expansion continued as the Midland and Odessa economies entered second quarter 2013.

Amarillo Economist Karr Ingham, who prepares the Midland-Odessa Regional Economic Index for Midland Development Corp. and Security Bank, said the index in April was 11.7 percent above April 2012 and has posted 38 consecutive months of growth.

It is an economy that should be celebrated for its expansion and job creation, Ingham said. But, such an overheated economy comes with challenges such as the Midland-Odessa labor market.

The area's employment growth leads not only the state, but the nation, with Midland posting the nation's lowest unemployment rate for five consecutive months. Ingham predicted that the unemployment rate would continue to decline, meaning the labor market will get even tighter, putting upward pressure on wages and other elements.

"Everything is magnified in Midland-Odessa," he said. "When economic data is revised upward, the revisions are astounding, and when they're revised downward, you really get hammered."

"It's not logical to expect to maintain 20 to 30 percent retail sales increases or 20 to 30 percent growth in automotive spending or 6 to 7 percent job growth," he said. "The rate may stabilize at a high level of activity. By no means does that mean that area is on the verge of a contraction."

Retail spending, for example, was 7.3 percent higher than April 2012, which was over 34 percent higher than April 2011 levels.

Construction and housing have "a lot to do with continuing to push the index higher," Ingham said. The total value of building permits issued in the two cities in April reached $98.15 million, up 55 percent from $63.3 million last April, the fifth highest month on record.

For the year, those permits have totaled $324.77 million, up 36.7 percent from $237.6 million in the first four months of 2012.

Midland and Odessa issued 115 new home permits in April, compared to 91 last April, the fifth consecutive month that number has exceeded 100. The two cities have issued 451 so far in 2013, up 20.6 percent from last year, which was 38 percent above the first four months of 2011.

Realtors sold 283 existing homes in April, up 18.9 percent from 238 last April, a sign, that new home construction has expanded the inventory of available housing.

The average sales price of $211,268 was up 6.6 percent, from $198,224 last April, which was 28.7 percent above the April 2011 average.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland drops calls to Farmers Branch, Wichita Falls 

(6/6/2013 6:45:00 AM)

MIDLAND - The city will lose about 100 jobs with the closing of the AT&T call center.

The call center, then known as Cingular Wireless, opened in June 2001 in the 135,000-sf building that once housed Builders Square home improvement center at Loop 250 and Andrews Hwy.

"We are consolidating some call center work into larger AT&T centers in Farmer's Branch and Wichita Falls," said spokesman Marty Richter. "All affected employees are being offered the opportunity to follow their work to those locations, and a relocation allowance."

To bring the call center to Midland, Cingular received the city's first tax abatements, plus a $1.25 million forgivable loan, $1 million of which came from the city's water and sewer funds and $250,000 from the Abell-Hanger Foundation.

Center employees have until August to accept a move, apply for other jobs or leave the company. The building remains open because a handful of employees continue to work there.

Roughly half of the 100 jobs are moving to Farmers Branch and half to Wichita Falls.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Natatorium still to dip in Midland 

(5/30/2013)

MIDLAND - City of Midland Aquatics (COM), located at 3003 North A St., will break ground next week on the FMH Foundation Natatorium.

The expansion will consist of a 40,000-sf natatorium with a 50-meter pool, multipurpose pool and a 7,000-sf courtyard. Th

The expansion will bring COM Aquatics to a total of 110,000 sf of available programming space with seven pools, a courtyard, physical therapy center, diving arena, wellness and aerobics facilities, fitness gym and a learn-to-swim division.

The cost of the new facility is $7 million, according to previous news stories.

The new addition will allow the ongoing development of COM Aquatic programs to expand and better accommodate a rapidly increasing membership for both youth and adults.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

See previous story Midland to dip in $7M acquatics center.

Midland saddles up Horseshoe expansion 

(5/29/2013)

MIDLAND - In 2014, the Horseshoe, located at 2514 Arena Trail, will have two additions. A proposed pavilion will have 52,000 sf of multiuse space that can accommodate up to three events simultaneously, while a 33,500-sf livestock building will be a covered open-air facility that adjoins the existing livestock building. It will have 180 stalls.

In May 2013, County Commissioners approved a contractor to build the two new buildings for $24.3 million. To fund it, the county is using sales tax and hotel and motel tax revenue.

Direct economic impact from the Horseshoe is estimated at $7 million and indirect economic impact is estimated at $20 million, according to Mike Dooley, who runs the private company that manages the Horseshoe.

County Judge Mike Bradford said the Horseshoe will be able to book an additional 150 to 200 events within the first year of the pavilion's opening. Because big events are booked a year or more in advance, he said venue users will start talking to them during the construction phase.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

SpringHill Suites opens in Midland 

(5/29/2013)

MIDLAND - The 107-suite SpringHill Suites by Marriott has opened. Located at 5716 Deauville Blvd., the SpringHill Suites Midland will operate as a Marriott franchise, owned and managed by Insignia Hospitality Group Inc.

Located five miles from downtown and 15 miles from Midland International Airport, the hotel offers guests access to the Scharbauer Sports Complex, Midland Park Mall and Midland Memorial Hospital.

The property has 2,593 sf of meeting space to accommodate meetings and functions of up to 220 people. Additionally, the hotel also offers business services, guest laundry facilities, an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness center.

The project had an estimated cost of $5.1 million, according to state filings.

Read more at PRLOG.

Midland's hotel numbers soar 

(5/22/2013 7:00:00 AM)

MIDLAND - The hotel business collected more than $20 million in taxable receipts in first quarter 2013.

The Texas Comptroller’s Office reported $20.1 million was collected between January 2013 and March 2013, which was an excess of $1.5 million more than Lubbock and $2.5 million more than Odessa. The total fell short of beating the top quarter in the city’s history which was $20,501,877 in 3Q 2012.

The $20.1 million during 1Q 2013 also is nearly three times the amount brought in during 1Q 2010, $7,252,122. Midland hotels collected $16.9 million during 1Q 2012. That means receipts grew by more than 17 percent in one year.

The hotels bringing in the most total receipts during the first quarter were the LaQuinta on Loop 250 ($3.6 million), the MCM Fundome in Odessa ($3.154 million) and the DoubleTree by Hilton ($3.05 million).

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Midland employment on the rise 

(5/20/2013)

MIDLAND - The preliminary local jobless rates for April 2013 are available, with revised March 2013 numbers in parentheses. Only the top ten are listed.

  • Midland 3.0 (3.1)
  • Odessa 3.7 (3.7)
  • Amarillo 4.4 (4.6)
  • Abilene 4.8 (4.9)
  • Lubbock 4.8 (5.3)
  • College Station-Bryan 5.0 (5.1)
  • San Angelo 5.0 (4.9)
  • Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos 5.1 (5.3)
  • Victoria 5.1 (5.2)
  • Longview 5.4 (5.6)


Midland’s labor force grew to 94,321 from the March 2013 figure of 93,491 and created 1,000 new jobs from March 2013 to April 2013 for a job growth rate of 1.2 percent, according to the Texas Workforce Commission.

Statewide, the unemployment rate remained at 6.4 percent, with 33,100 new jobs added in April 2013. The state has added 326,100 new jobs in 2013.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

For all Texas areas, see the Texas Workforce Commission's monthly report.

Apartments, convenience store coming to Midland 

(5/10/2013)

MIDLAND - The Planning and Zoning Commission passed items that will help develop the city’s east side.

Although construction has already begun on Sunrise at Fairgrounds Apartments, the commission approved a final plat for utility corrections.

Located near the intersection of Fairgrounds Road and Golf Course Road, Sunrise at Fairgrounds is a five-acre affordable housing apartment complex.

The complex will feature two-bedroom, two-bath and three-bedroom, two-bath apartments with vinyl plank flooring, kitchen appliances and washer and dryer hookups.

Phase one will be available for occupancy in November. The separate leasing office and amenity center will be built during phase two.

Another addition to the east side of town is a Stripes convenience store at East Loop 250 and Elkins Road.

Read more at MyWestTexas.com.

Midland housing shortage may last awhile 

(5/6/2013)

MIDLAND - Members of Midland's housing community believe it will be between 18 months to three years before the housing supply will catch up with demand.

There is a flood of combined housing units in the works — hotel rooms, apartment units and housing lots — reaching into the 5,000 range, according to the City of Midland.

In September 2012, City Manager Courtney Sharp said Midland was about 5,000 units short. In first quarter 2013, the city issued 283 housing permits.

Developers are working with the city to catch up with the demand that has workers living in hotel rooms and man camps.

People in the Midland housing industry, such as Mark Payne, a local home builder and developer of Mark Payne Homes, said the 5,000-unit shortage is a reasonable estimate that will go away in about two to three years.

The average price of a home is now at $271,000, a $30,000 increase from September 2012 and an increase of nearly $80,000 from May 2010, according to Bobby McCourt, president of the Permian Basin Board of Realtors.

National developer D. R. Horton is currently working on a 398-unit subdivision west of the Scharbauer Sports Complex.

Read more at MyWestTexas.

Chevron human energy taps $100M Midland campus 

(4/30/2013)

MIDLAND - Ground has been broken on Chevron’s new $100 million Midland campus. It will feature two four-story buildings totaling 330,000 sf. The two buildings will be connected by a walkway and will accommodate 800 employees, twice the capacity of the current offices.

Construction is expected to begin this summer on the campus west of the Scharbauer Sports Complex is expected to take 22 to 24 months. There will also be an adjacent parking garage with space for 700 cars and separate visitor parking. Amenities include a conference and training center.

The 25 acres Chevron purchased from the Scharbauer Brothers also has room for a third four-story building with capacity for 400 people.

The new campus is the largest such project to be built in Midland in at least 30 years, when the oil industry was last booming, according to Wes Perry, Midland’s mayor.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Restaurants, stores, hotels coming to Midland 

(4/25/2013)

MIDLAND - The zones for two hotels in development on Deauville Blvd. southeast of Sam’s Club have approved. The northern hotel will be a Cambria Suites and the southern hotel will be an independently owned upscale hotel, according to Ken Van Dyne, the city’s planning director.

Additionally, a Four Point Sheraton on Starboard is being built near the upcoming Cinergy Cinema movie theater on Liberty Drive.

A Golden Chick restaurant will be located on South Fort Worth St., just south of East Florida Ave.

Jared The Galleria of Jewelry will be built on the Midland Park Mall property, just south of Genghis Grill.

Two separate apartments were approved. The first was a 300-unit luxury apartment complex at Edwards St. and Spring Park Dr. The second was a 250-unit apartment complex at Briarwood Ave. and Mathis St. that will include single-floor buildings next to neighboring homes north of the complex.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

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