Nebraska Furniture Mart: Economic jewel or neighborhood eyesore?

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by STEVE STOLER

WFAA

Posted on December 3, 2013 at 6:28 PM

Updated Tuesday, Dec 3 at 9:00 PM

Nebraska Furniture Mart

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THE COLONY –– The country's largest home furnishings store is becoming a reality in The Colony. Construction is moving along on the Nebraska Furniture Mart. Its frame juts out into the horizon. 

Homeowners who live nearby are starting to realize just what they'll be staring at: 1.8-million square feet. That's more than twice the size of the American Airlines Center and two-thirds the size of AT&T Stadium.

It’s a massive project, with homeowners nearby questioning its impact on their property values.

The folks who live on Redstone Lane used to have a scenic view of a farm where cattle grazed. Today, scenes of construction have replaced those serene vistas. 

Penny Barre said she bought her house in King's Ridge, in part, for the view. But when construction started, she decided to sell it. 

"I had a glassed-in end of my house, and I used to look over the ranch," said Barre. "And now, I'm going to look at a furniture store, which I didn't find appealing."

City leaders in The Colony are touting the jewel of a master economic development plan, anchored by the Nebraska Furniture Mart. The corridor along the adjacent Sam Rayburn Tollway is booming with new shopping centers and attractions like Top Golf.

"We hope the development will be an asset and amenity to the community, not a deterrent," said Assistant City Manager Tod Maurina. "We believe it will."

But some Realtors fear the massive development, known as Grandscape, could drop some property values, where homes range from $300,000 to almost $500,000. 

"In real estate, location is everything, and view is a huge part of location, and thus, impact property values tremendously," said Cheryl Webb, a North Texas Realtor.

The Colony city leaders say they want to be good neighbors with the Plano homeowners who live closest to the development. They've met with homeowner association members regularly, and will start offering limited tours of the property. 

They also showed artist renderings of a buffer of trees designed to improve the view. 

"Progress and the future rolls on. So whether we like it or not, it's here," Barre said.

E-mail sstoler@wfaa.com

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