DALLAS — Doesn’t matter which one you’re most excited for: Maybe it’s Nashville-hot chicken in Deep Ellum, Chicago hot dogs in The Colony, or the H.E.B. grocery stores planned for Collin County or Forney.
They all point to the same fact: North Texas is growing.
We’ve told you about North Texas’ red hot housing market.
“Everybody wants to talk about people coming from California. That is very real, but there are also people coming from all over North America,” real estate broker Todd Tramonte said.
“And when you have more people living here, you're going to have more of the kinds of things we're all seeing: You're going to need more housing and more schools and more shopping centers,” SMU Cox School of Business economist Mike Davis said.
We’ve seen the tweets and Facebook comments from North Texans talking about all the new eateries and grocery stores coming to DFW.
“They've been talking about coming to North Texas for quite some time, so there's a lot of anticipation for H-E-B,” Texas Retailers Association Grocery Industry Consultant Gary Huddleston said. “But there's also strong grocery retailers within the Dallas-Fort Worth area that's been here for a good while.”
As a result, H-E-B’s arrival to North Texas will create competition that your wallet should benefit from, Huddleston said.
“Grocery retailing industry is very competitive, and so each grocery retailer will be trying to attract more customers by price and value, location, customer service,” Huddleston said.
Forney city officials announced plans for a new H-E-B on Tuesday. But North Texas shoppers will need to be patient.
“It's marketing,” Dallas City Councilman Tennell Atkins said. “Because they make an announcement, it don't mean they're going to open the store tomorrow. It might be within one year or two years or three years.”
Construction hasn’t started yet on the property H-E-B bought in Atkins’ District 8. He said he views the move as an acknowledgement of his district’s growth.
“We need groceries and I’m glad H-E-B put their brand in our neighborhood and I just can't wait for the time to be the first one to go through the door and buy some groceries,” Atkins said.
Atkins told WFAA the Kroger Customer Fulfillment Center should be opening in District 8 soon. The online grocery fulfillment facility will also provide jobs for the community, Atkins said.
It’s a trend Huddleston said he’s noticed.
“Several grocery retailers are opening fulfillment centers around North Texas to ensure that they're doing that business and capitalizing on both home delivery and order online and pick up at the store,” Huddleston said.
Restaurants are hungry to take advantage of what North Texas has to offer, too.
“We've said this throughout the whole pandemic: Thank, God we're in Texas,” Texas Restaurant Association Chief Operating Officer Joe Monastero said. “We've been in a much better position than many other states within the United States as a whole. We've been open in one shape or form or another since May of 2020.”
Monastero said the restaurant industry is well on its way to recovery: Just over 1,000 new TABC licenses were issued in the greater DFW metroplex since January of 2021.
“We are still floating somewhere between 15 to 18% of restaurants that we had prior to the COVID-19 pandemic permanently closed, but there are new restaurants that are starting to open,” Monastero said.