A Shake Shack, a hotel and renovation of Mule Alley are headed to the iconic Fort Worth Stockyards as part of a redevelopment initiative trotting off after a slow start.
Stockyards Heritage Development Co., a partnership between Majestic Realty Co. and The Hickman Cos., unveiled plans Thursday to continue the evolution of the historic district through its renovation of the Horse and Mule Barns in the Stockyards.
Plans were also unveiled for improvements to the Stockyards’ Exchange Avenue and construction of an Autograph Collection boutique hotel, event barn and "rustic resort," called Hotel Drover, at the end of Mule Alley’s street of shops, eateries, offices and live-entertainment venues.
The project’s first phase has just kicked off, launching the $175 million renovation and ground-up development that’s been designed and planned over the past several years.
“The Stockyards present a unique challenge, but also a rare opportunity,” Craig Cavileer, executive vice president of Majestic Realty Co./Stockyards Heritage Development Co., said in a news release. “We knew from the moment we first visited the district over 20 years ago that this was a rare gem — a place people from all over the world visit for a taste of Texas and the West.”
He said the developers have worked to incorporate into the project “the freedom, spirit and character of the cowboys, cowgirls and cattle culture that shaped Texas into what it is today.”
“That’s a tall order as a developer,” he said, “But also an inspirational one.”
Mule Alley will ultimately have some of the best restaurateurs, merchants, artisans and entrepreneurs in Texas, Cavileer said. He said the developers aren’t looking to “overly commercialize” the Stockyards, but to broaden its appeal for locals as well as guests from Texas, the U.S. and around the world.”
“We are taking our time, making sure new residents of Mule Alley fit the character of the Stockyards, and we’re encouraging our leasing team to think creatively about the mix,” he said. “We would rather take a risk with an inventive tenant than play it safe with a chain that brings little to the table.”