11-acre project takes shape in Grapevine: Developer aims to attract more retail options

(Graphic by Ellen Jackson/Community Impact Newspaper)
(Graphic by Ellen Jackson/Community Impact Newspaper)

(Graphic by Ellen Jackson/Community Impact Newspaper)

Image description
(Graphic by Ellen Jackson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
(Graphic by Ellen Jackson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
(Graphic by Ellen Jackson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Construction is moving forward on the first pieces of an estimated $31 million project called Grapevine Station North.

Chris Leighton, a broker for Westwood Real Estate Development, said he envisions the project attracting more retail and restaurants to the corner of SH 26 and Ruth Wall Road.

“I don’t know how many towns of 50,000 people have a billion-dollar corridor, but Grapevine does and we happen to be at that intersection in a big way,” he said.

In addition to bringing more traffic to the north side of Grapevine, officials said the development should address another resident demand: having a place closer to home to buy groceries.

"They see the same need that we do, which is to get some fresh produce and some other kinds of things available for people,” said Bob Farley, Grapevine Economic Development director.

Once finished, the project will include small offices, retail and restaurants. The anchor will be the Texas Best Smokehouse travel center. There will be eight buildings total, in addition to a car wash as part of the travel center.

Developing office and retail

Grapevine Station North adds more than 11 acres to the original Grapevine Station development on the south side of SH 26.

More than 3 acres of Grapevine Station North have been set aside for the Texas Best Smokehouse travel center, where groceries will be sold. Another 7.5 acres will be used for single-story buildings for retail, medical office and restaurant uses.

No specific companies have been announced, as leases are still in progress, Leighton said. However, he said the site will be developed so that offices are in the back part of the property with retail stores closer to Northwest Highway.

Developers and city officials likened the Texas Best Smokehouse to a smaller version of Buc-ee’s, a popular Texas gas station. Like Buc-ee’s, the Texas Best Smokehouse will sell a variety of products, such as jerky, jarred products, snacks, Texas wines, home goods and clothing.

Construction on the store will cost an estimated $11 million, owner Nasser Safa said. The store is expected to generate $8 million in sales each year, he said.

“We are in the gas station business; however, we are in the upper scale, not the mediocre or the average gas station that you walk into,” Safa said.

Texas Best Smokehouse will have 14 fuel pumps. There will be up to 12 Tesla charging stations and a few general vehicle charging stations.

A tunnel car wash with vacuums and detailing services will be included in the development. Inside the store will be the Texas Best Smokehouse barbecue restaurant, a deli restaurant, a pizzeria, a coffee bar and a juice bar. Meat from the smokehouse restaurant can also be used as pizza toppings at the pizzeria.

“We cater to the community on an individual basis,” Safa said.

Area lacking density

The Texas Best Smokehouse is crucial to the Grapevine Station North project, as it is expected to help drive foot traffic to the area, Leighton said.

The north side of town has struggled in the past to keep retail and restaurant options open, Leighton said when the project went before Grapevine City Council in August 2018. That is because much of the surrounding land is being used by Grapevine Lake and the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport instead of housing developments, he said.

With the lack of retail options, fewer people have reason to visit that side of town beyond the Starbucks and the Mesa Mexican restaurant there, city officials said at the meeting.

The south end of Grapevine Station was developed into several offices for this reason, officials said. However, the intention is to develop more retail spaces and restaurants at Grapevine Station North, Leighton said. Based on his experience with the south side, Leighton said he believes the Texas Best Smokehouse will help the area overcome its previous struggles.

This was something Grapevine Mayor William D. Tate recognized at the August 2018 council meeting.

“This will create a lot of traffic, yes, but that’s what we need: traffic. We need some energy, and that will help the retail there,” Tate said at the meeting. “They’ve struggled for years trying to get retail in there.”

Working with resident demand

The Texas Best Smokehouse project was approved after developers assured Grapevine City Council that groceries would be included.

Safa said he is dedicating about 1,200 square feet of the store to fresh produce, in addition to other grocery items. The fruits and vegetables will benefit not only the residents but also the store itself, he said, since the items can also be used by the restaurant.

“We understand that the demographics don’t support [produce], but we can throw it in, and we found a way to make it a win-win,” Safa said.

City Council’s request stemmed from inquiries to the city from residents about having a grocery store closer to their homes. The city had even reached out to Westwood to see if it could entice a full grocery store to set up shop in the area, but to no avail.

“There’s sort of a twofold challenge: You’ve got grocers that have built large stores that are within commutable distance of where that population is, ... and then, the north side challenge, historically, of not having as much raw residential development,” Farley said.

Some residents who live on the north side of the city expressed disappointment with the planned development for the site.

“A grocery store is much-needed,” Grapevine resident Rhonda Bishop said. “Kroger is so overwhelmed with both Grapevine and Southlake residents shopping there.”

“The last thing we need is another gas station/convenience store, even if it does sell a few healthy items,” Grapevine resident Susan Quinn said.

A few of the smaller grocers have begun to express interest in the area, Farley said. No one has stepped up with a proposal just yet, though, so the Texas Best Smokehouse can serve as a sort of placeholder, he said.

“This will be a transitional piece for that corridor until such time as that density is there,” Farley said.
By Miranda Jaimes

Editor, Frisco & McKinney

Miranda joined Community Impact Newspaper as an editor in August 2017 with the Grapevine/Colleyville/Southlake edition. In 2019 she transitioned to editor for the McKinney edition. She began covering Frisco as well in 2020. Miranda covers local government, transportation, business and nonprofits in these communities. Prior to CI, Miranda served as managing editor for The Prosper Press, The Anna-Melissa Tribune and The Van Alstyne Leader, and before that reported and did design for The Herald Democrat, a daily newspaper in Grayson County. She graduated with a degree in journalism from Oklahoma Christian University in 2014.


Frescas offers authentic Mexican drinks and snacks like elote, a street-style corn on the cob. (Courtesy Frescas)
New shop Frescas to bring authentic Mexican drinks, snacks to Southlake

Frescas, opening this weekend, hopes the Southlake community will enjoy a taste of Hispanic culture with its authentic Mexican treats.

Taco Ocho is now open in McKinney. (Courtesy Taco Ocho)
Taco Ocho opens in McKinney; Hoff's Steaks & Steins coming to Frisco and more DFW-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, including Tornado Terry's celebrating 30 years of games in Fort Worth.

Q&A: Greg Smith, executive director of Fast Growth School Coalition

Greg Smith is the former superintendent of Clear Creek ISD and became executive director of Fast Growth School Coalition in December 2020. 

An open space bond is expected to be on Southlake's November 2021 ballot. (Sandra Sadek/Community Impact Newspaper)
Southlake plans to move forward with open space bond election in November

After being delayed in May 2020, the city of Southlake plans to call a special election for the open space and stormwater management bond on the ballot in November.

Swedish electric car brand Polestar is coming to Grapevine. (Courtesy Grubbs Family of Dealerships)
Grubbs to operate Grapevine's first all-electric car brand

Polestar, Grapevine's first all-electric car brand, will be operated by the Grubbs family of dealerships. The brand currently offers two models with a third planned in the future.

The Carroll ISD Board of Trustees decided Aug. 2 to hold a special election in November to fill Place 7 on the board. (Sandra Sadek/Community Impact Newspaper)
Carroll ISD board opts for special election to fill Place 7 vacancy

The board came to a 4-0 decision during a workshop meeting to hold a special election Nov. 2 to fill the vacancy for Place 7, the term for which expires in May 2022.

Stumpy's Hatchet House offers ax throwing for groups of any size. (Courtesy Stumpy's Hatchet House)
Ax-throwing venue comes to Frisco; Plano ISD to offer back-to-school fair and more DFW-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, including an Aug. 3 event Plano ISD is hosting to give away backpacks.

Tarrant County data shows that, as of July 28, 55% of residents age 12 and older have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 48% percent of those residents are fully vaccinated.(Courtesy Texas Children's Hospital)
As July draws to close, Tarrant County nears 550 COVID-19 hospitalizations

Tarrant County data shows that, as of July 28, 55% of residents age 12 and older have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 48% percent of those residents are fully vaccinated.

student writing on paper
Texas Legislature allows parents to opt for students to repeat grade levels or courses

Senate Bill 1697 is effective for the 2021-22 school year.

Oni Ramen plans to open a location in Richardson's CityLine development later this year. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Oni Ramen coming to Richardson; American-Italian restaurant Sfereco set to open in Lewisville and more DFW-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, including a new bakery coming to McKinney.

On July 29, the city announced that it acquired 230 acres of parkland within the Painted Tree residential development. (Courtesy city of McKinney)
McKinney pays $23M for 230 acres of parkland in Painted Tree development

Athletic fields, recreational facilities and future community and economic development projects will be built upon the new land.