"If you would have told me two years ago I'd be right here, I'd have told you [that] you were crazy," says Georgie Zang, who corralled the vision for Main 7, a multi-million dollar project being built along Cooper Street near University of Texas at Arlington.
Sitting in an office overlooking Globe Life Park, Zang, 51, explains how she had originally been searching for property where she could build a home for a family member who has special needs.
"And you know that there's just not a lot out there," she says. The quest eventually led her to striking deals with development companies and the city of Arlington.
"[The idea] really was birthed from seeing a need at the city," she says of the unanticipated venture.
Zang, who now oversees sales for the 53-unit complex, says that while there are lots of apartments and student housing being built in Arlington, there's not a smorgasbord of luxury townhomes around. Main 7’s gated urban villas, which are modeled after similar structures in Highland Park and Uptown Dallas, start at $350,000 and veer upward to more than half a million dollars. They’re fee simple, she adds, meaning that buyers not only own the structure but the dirt below too.
After she worked as a local account manager in telecommunications for 25 years, Zang’s knack for conversing on an executive level, paired with an ability to bring the right people together to make things happen, meshed well with her new endeavor, she says.
"If it’s on my plate, I will get it done,” Zang says unblinkingly. “There’s nobody that’s going to work harder to get it done. These are not easy things to get done. You have to really, really, believe in what you’re doing to get over a lot of the hurdles. It’s not for the weary, I’ll tell you."
It’s also a bit challenging to hawk units that haven’t been built yet, Zang says. Eight of the 11 first phase units are already under contract by Arlington buyers who are eyeing a fourth quarter completion date.
"If you would have told me two years ago I'd be right here, I'd have told you [that] you were crazy." – Georgie Zang
"We'll be quickly moving into phase two," Zang says. "Even with the COVID, we've not slowed down construction.”
Zang, who also serves on the board of directors for Arlington Chamber of Commerce, noted that the city has poured money into revitalization projects downtown, and Main 7 will cap those efforts on the west end. Residents can soon enjoy art sculptures created by UTA artists, gas appliances, two-car garages and a Zen garden but, in order to keep homeowner association fees low, workout facilities and pools will be nonexistent.
"[People] want simpler,” she says. "The biggest draw is the walkability to downtown.”
Zang acknowledges the vast amount of help that she’s had along the way, from a builder in Tennessee who had a brother-in-law in Dallas to Oakhollow Group’s Mojy Haddad and Arlington’s Mayor Jeff Williams.
"Mayor Williams just sort of sold Arlington," Zang says of Williams’ enthusiasm during an initial meeting with Savannah Developers.
“These men really looked at this project and really got behind it," she continues. “I had the vision for it, but they’re the ones that are making it happen.”
Zang’s also proud of the fact that the historical property was once home to former Arlington Mayor John Pilant.
“There will be people telling you you’re crazy,” Zang says of chasing a dream. “But until the Lord shuts the door, I'm going to keep going through it. I want the city to be the best it can be. I want to do my part to contribute."