Writer: Joshua Andino
2 min read December 2022 — With economic diversity, a growing population and strategic location providing continued opportunity and a shield for a potential downturn, Dallas-Fort Worth is ready for 2023.
Having seen a banner two years as a result of an early opening from the pandemic and strong economic tailwinds, the metroplex heads into 2023 with record investment and construction underway, and little seems capable of slowing down the market. A vast array of new development across the metroplex, a deep bench of industries, including 24 of the Fortune 500 companies, and a growing population will continue to drive opportunities across the region even in the wake of potential economic headwinds that have been forecast for 2023.
While other markets may be more susceptible to a potential correction – particularly one that seems to be building in the housing market, DFW’s robust population growth means the region will remain a premier opportunity for investors and business expansion. For this reason, the North Texas economy was the first to fully recover – and surpass pre-pandemic activity. Also separating the North Texas market from others is land availability. Whereas other growing markets across the U.S. are constrained geographically, forcing more people into less space and driving concerns around density, traffic and public transit, as well as environmental stewardship, the wide expanse of North Texas’ geography means that a number of areas remain available for development. According to Brooke Armstrong, CBRE’s president of advisory services, the big question is about infrastructure capability as opposed to land availability.
Armstrong told Invest: earlier this year, “Dallas-Fort Worth has traditionally not been an innovative city in terms of mass transit, so we really need to look at that moving forward. Another question is how we can maintain and improve our water systems to accommodate the increasing population. However, Dallas is well-positioned for this influx because we are not land-constrained and as we grow, we can go further out, whether it’s industrial or residential.”
While North Texas will continue to be an attractive market for real estate – particularly industrial development, the local economy’s diversity, and critical status as a logistics hub, with both air, rail, and interstate highway connectivity easily available, means its capability for growth will only expand as industries continue to look for strategic sites as supply chains recalibrate and globalism reverses. Earlier in 2021, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport saw 1 million tonnes of cargo pass through its hangars for the first time ever, while Fort Worth Alliance Airport joined the ranks of the top-20 busiest cargo efforts, seeing a whopping 2.4 billion tonnes of cargo pass through with FedEx and Amazon both driving the airport’s growth. With e-commerce continuing its steady ascent and industries returning to the U.S. or nearshoring operations, DFW’s central position will further cement it as a key market for a variety of industries to establish a presence.
In his own interview with Invest:, Fort Worth Alliance CEO Chris Childs explained,“Because e-commerce took such a leap forward during the pandemic, we’ve had among our best years ever since 2020. Amazon Prime Air opened its first hub here in October 2019, which was retrospectively great timing to accommodate that looming spike in demand for e-commerce… FedEx has also entered into a 20-year operating agreement with the City of Fort Worth and AllianceTexas, so that will bring opportunity for years to come.”
Regarding political developments around North Texas, it will still be some time before the state shifts from Republican stronghold to potential battleground. No Democrat has won statewide office since 1994, but with the state’s big cities – such as Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio, and Houston adding new residents by the day, a leftward shift has developed over the last few cycles. Nevertheless, Republican incumbent Gov. Greg Abbott handily secured his victory over Democrat Beto O’Rourke by about 11 points, showing that for the time being, Republicans run the show and Democrats have work to do.
Looking forward, the metroplex will continue to prosper. Multiple factors, including a deep bench of diverse industry leaders, a strategic location as logistics hub, and steady leadership means that for North Texas businesses, while there may be some national economic headwinds on the horizon, locally, they could not be better positioned for the future, riding on the region’s growth and generating their own as a result.